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Does your verb agree with your subject?

A look-back on the basics of subject-verb agreement

BASIC RULE

Singular noun = Singular verb

S Form - Verb + -s or -es Base form.

Plural noun = Plural verb

EXAMPLE
The students (pass) through the Our

Lady of the Holy Rosary Building.


The students pass through the Our lady

of the Holy Rosary Building.

EXAMPLE
The student (pass) through the Our Lady

of the Holy Rosary Building.


The student passes through the Our lady

of the Holy Rosary Building,

RULE 1
Two singular subjects connected by OR

or NOR = SINGULAR VERB

Example: The teacher nor the students knows the way out of the theater. The teacher or the students knows the way out of the theater.

RULE 2
Two singular subjects connected by

EITHER/OR or NEITHER/NOR = SINGULAR VERB

EXAMPLE
Neither Jay or Faye gives an importance

to sleeping early. Either Jay or Faye gives an importance to sleeping early.

RULE 3
When I is one of the subjects

connected by either/or or neither/nor put it second and follow it by AM.

EXAMPLE
Wrong: Either I or the other teachers are

going to clean the faculty room.


Correct: Either the other teachers or I am

going to clean the faculty room.

RULE 4
When a singular subject is connected to

a plural subject with OR or NOR, put the plural subject LAST. Use a PLURAL VERB.

EXAMPLE
Wrong: His students or Mr. Mangahas

goes to the IMTC.


Correct: Mr. Mangahas or his students

go to the IMTC.

RULE 5
When a singular subject is connected to

a plural subject with EITHER/OR or NEITHER/NOR, put the plural subject LAST. Use a PLURAL VERB.

EXAMPLE
Wrong: Neither the books nor the class

record is on my desk.
Correct: Neither the class record nor the

books are on my desk.

RULE 6
Use a PLURAL VERB with two or more

subjects connected by AND.

Example: A pencil and an eraser are needed for the examination.

RULE 6 EXEMPTION
If two objects or persons are considered

as one, they use the singular verb. Example: Bread and butter is my breakfast today. Salt and pepper is used to season dishes. My friend and confidante is trustworthy. My friend and my confidante are trustworthy.

RULE 7
Sometimes, a subject is separated from

the verb by groups of words. Ignore these expressions, look for the subject and determine if it needs a singular or plural verb.

EXAMPLE
Ms. Pangilinan, who is one of the

coordinators, discusses the Sacraments with her class. The coordinators, who are the immediate superiors of the teachers, observe classes once a month.

RULE 8
The pronouns, EACH, EVERYONE,

EVERY ONE, EVERYBODY, ANYONE, ANYBODY, SOMEONE and SOMEBODY require a SINGULAR VERB.

EXAMPLE
Each of us has to live up to the Vision-

Mission of the school. Everyone is expected to follow the rules and regulations. Anybody who violates the rules are given sanctions.

RULE 9
For words indicating portions (percent,

fraction, part, majority, some, all, none, remainder, etc.) look at the OF PHRASE to determine if a singular or plural verb is needed.

EXAMPLE
Ninety percent of the students have

taken the Scholastic Inventory Test.


Ninety percent of the population has

taken the Scholastic Inventory Test.

EXAMPLE
Half of the pie is eaten.
Half of the pies are eaten.

Some of the ribbon is used for dcor.


Some of the ribbons are used for dcor.

RULE 10
When EITHER and NEITHER are

subjects, they always take the SINGULAR VERB. Example: Neither is giving up the fight. Either is going to see the film.

RULE 11
In sentences beginning with HERE and

THERE, the subject follows the verb.

Example: Here are pieces of chalk for the game. Here is a piece of chalk for the game.

RULE 12
Use SINGULAR VERB with SUMS OF

MONEY or PERIODS OF TIME. Example: Forty pesos is the needed contribution each month. Five hours is too long for an exam.

RULE 13
Pronouns WHO, THAT, WHICH use a

singular or plural verb depending on the noun preceding them.

EXAMPLE
Ms. Monzon is the teacher who

discusses subject-verb agreement now.


Ms. Monzon is one of the teachers who

are employed in SCSJ.

RULE 14
COLLECTIVE NOUNS may be either

singular or plural depending on their usage.

EXAMPLE
The faculty prepares for the upcoming

Sisters Day.
The faculty divide themselves into

committees for the event.

FINAL RULE
Only the subject affects the

verb!

ORAL DRILLS

Take a closer look.


The president give a plaque of

appreciation to the volunteers.


The president gives a plaque of

appreciation to the volunteers.

Take a closer look.


The volunteers give their gratitude to the

president for giving them the award.


The volunteers gives their gratitude to

the president for giving them the award.

Take a closer look.


One-half of the schools population have

OFWs as parents.
One-half of the schools population has

OFWs as parents.

Take a closer look.


Two-thirds is the needed size for the

ribbon.
Two-thirds are the needed size for the

ribbon.

Take a closer look.


The teacher nor the students knows if

the classes are cancelled.


The teacher nor the students know if the

classes are cancelled.

Supply the correct form of the verb.


1. Details _______ our minds to buy what our hearts desire.
a. convinces b. convince

Supply the correct form of the verb.


2. Everyone ______ to rationalize his or her desires. a. tries b. try

Supply the correct form of the verb.


3. My son, along with two friends, _______ coming for the weekend. a. is b. are

Supply the correct form of the verb.


4. Each of you ______ an equal chance to make good grades. a. have b. has

Supply the correct form of the verb.


5. The characteristics of the car _______ the reader proof that particular car is needed. a. give b. gives

Supply the correct form of the verb.


6. Other kinds of persuasive information ____ a physical description of the product, the reputation of the company, and the test and performance data. a. includes b. include

Supply the correct form of the verb.


7. Another source of persuasion ______ the testimonial of a satisfied customer. a. is b. are

Supply the correct form of the verb.


8. The famous ads of the past for the Charles Atlas body-building program ____ still another strategy: showing the reward in action. a. demonstrates b. demonstrate

Supply the correct form of the verb.


9. There _____ usually many legitimate claims that can be made about a product or service if one knows the facts. a. are b. is

Supply the correct form of the verb.


10. Sitting on the sofa ____ two students from Japan. a. are b. is

MERCI BEAUCOUP!