This post is a blast from the past - a return to a topic addressed in my very earliest spoonfuls. Why? Subject-Verb mismatches are a common grammatical problem and frequently appear as some of the trickiest questions in the SAT and ACT Writing sections.
If you'd like to brush up on the rules before taking the little quiz, I recommend you review the following spoonfuls: #2: VERBS, #3: SUBJECTS, #4: SUBJECT-VERB AGREEMENT, #5: INDEFINITE PRONOUNS, and #19: COLLECTIVE CONFUSION. In addition, I'll also provide two helpful hints. So test your knowledge and don't worry - I won't be grading your answers!
Hint #1: With active verbs, the singular form ends in S.
Hint #2: Identify the subject first and determine if it's singular or plural. Then match the verb form!
CHOOSE THE CORRECT VERB FORM
(No peeking at the answers!)
1. John and Mary (walk, walks) to the park each day.
2. Either Sam or Pam (is, are) responsible for taking out today's trash.
3. Everyone (is, are) getting tired of being cooped up.
4. High in the craggy mountains, far from civilization, (live,lives) a herd of mountain goats.
5. The topic of this book (is, are) birds of New England.
6. During this difficult time, many colleges (is, are) dropping their SAT requirements, which (make, makes) the college essay even more important than before.
7. Before bed each night, Kevin (do, does) yoga.
8. Neither Will nor Phil (know, knows) anything about the homework assignment.
9. Each of the dogs (sniff, sniffs) at the same exact spot in the yard.
10. In the deep, dark night, when the human family sleeps, the raccoon family (tip, tips) over the trash and (enjoy, enjoys) a feast.
1. John and Mary walk
2. Either Sam or Pam is
3. Everyone is
4. lives a herd
5. The topic is
6. many colleges are, which makes the college essay
7. Kevin does
8. Neither Will nor Phil knows
9. Each of the dogs sniffs
10. the raccoon family tips and enjoys
I hope you enjoyed this little quiz. And above all us, I hope you and your family remain safe and healthy during this very worrisome time.
Laura Fineberg Cooper
A Spoonful of Grammar