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Lesson 4: Grammar - Adjectives and Nouns

 

A statue of William Shakespeare in Leicester Square in London. Source: commons.wikimedia.org


During this lesson you will review a few rules on using adjectives in English, work on expanding your vocabulary, and take a quick look back at some nouns.

First, go to the Learn English website by the British Council and study adjectives focusing especially on the Order of Adjectives. The site also offers several exercises for practice purposes.

Second, go to this website listing of Descriptive Adjectives for some vocabulary enhancement. Do you know what all of those adjectives mean, are they active in your vocabulary, and do you know how to pronounce them?

Third, look at the grammar section below.

  

Attributive and Predicative Adjectives

Attributive adjectives are those which come before the noun they qualify, but predicative adjectives come after a linking verb like be, seem or become.

  • most adjectives can serve either purpose

  • some adjectives are only attributive and some only predicative so you need to use a different adjective in the other function (see the table below)

  • some adjectives have forms that are only used in a predicative function; these begin with a-

 

Attributive and
predicative

Only attributive

Examples

Only predicative

Examples

happy

 

Tom is a happy boy.

Tom is happy.

glad

Tom was glad to see you.

healthy

 

Brenda is a healthy woman.

Brenda is finally healthy.

well

Brenda is well now.

satisfied

contented

 

Marty is satisfied/contented with his work.

Marty is a satisfied/contented employee.

content

Marty has been content at work.

sick

 

Rick is sick.

Rick's sick brother is with him.

ill

Rick became ill last night.

scared

frightened

 

The bunny was scared/ frightened.

The scared/ frightened bunny escaped.

afraid

The bunny was afraid of people.

live

living

She was at a live concert.

The concert was broadcast live.

She respects all living things.

alive

I didn't know that your grandparents are still alive.

 

sleeping

Sleeping babies look so innocent.

asleep

The baby is finally asleep!

similar

 

Those two pictures are similar.

They had similar opinions.

alike

The paintings were alike in many ways.

conscious

 

He was conscious of his mistake.

That was not a conscious mistake.

aware

He was aware of his mistake.

     

alone

Tina was there alone.

     

ashamed

You don't need to be ashamed!

     

awake

Are you awake?

 


Adjectives as Nouns

An adjective can be used as a noun by adding the definite article the in front of it. Nouns formed this way are divided into two categories:

  • singular abstract nouns, for example

    • the impossible, the obvious

I tried to achieve the impossible.

Brett didn't want to admit the obvious.

  • plural nouns that refer to a group of people, for example

    • the young, the brave

§ "The Bold and the Beautiful" has been very successful. 

§ The anthem ends with, "the land of the free and the home of the brave."


Exercise 4.1 Using Adjectives

Fill in the correct word according to the Finnish translation.


1. You cannot avoid .

2. When I came home, he was sound .

3. The problems of should be solved as soon as possible.

4. The girl had a dress to Marilyn Monroe’s.

5. I must stay .

6. When designing new buildings, the needs of have to be taken into consideration.

7. People are often afraid of .

8. Have you ever seen a giraffe.

9. The girls are .

10. happened.
 

Source: commons.wikimedia.org

 

 


Singular and Plural Nouns

This part of the lesson offers just a quick look at the some nouns in English. You will find more information on the topic of singular and plural nouns for example in the ENA1 course materials.
 

Exercise 4.2 Singulars and Plurals of Nouns

Give the singular and the plural form of the following nouns.

TRANSLATION: näyttelijä / näyttelijätär
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: leipä
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: ilmiö
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: katto
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: lohi
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: japanilainen
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: vaate
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: herrasmies
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: läksyt
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: politiikka
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: sakset
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: tikapuut
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: ohikulkija
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: miesopiskelija
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: uutiset
SINGULAR:  PLURAL: 

TRANSLATION: farkut
SINGULAR:  PLURAL:  



Exercise 4.3 Nouns - Write Sentences

 

Here are ten nouns. Write two sentences per word so that one sentence will include the given word as a noun in the singular form and the other in the plural form. That is, 20 sentences altogether.

Tehtävä arvioidaan arvosanalla 4-10.

 

mother-in-law

equipment

sheep

people

Swiss

head of security

wolf

headquarters

wedding

 

luggage


Exercise 4.4 Describing things - Scenery

 

Look at the two pictures below and write a short description of about 50 words / picture. Focus on using adjectives.

Tehtävä arvioidaan arvosanalla 4-10.

Piccadilly Circus

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e0/Piccadilly_circus_1992_07.jpg Source: commons.wikimedia.org

 

Sydney Opera House

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/98/SydneyOperaHouse.jpg Source: commons.wikimedia.org

 

Submit your text here:

 


Exercise 4.5 Describing things - A Comparison

Look at the two works of art below, both iconic American art, and write a short description of about 100 words where you compare them. Focus on using adjectives.

Tehtävä arvioidaan arvosanalla 4-10.

Marilyn by Andy Warhol

Source: es.wikipedia.org

 

American Gothic by Grant Wood

Source: en.wikipedia.org


Submit your text here:


Exercise 4.6 Using Adjectives - Narration

Watch this one-minute video of the headquarters of Otavan Opisto and narrate it. Focus on using adjectives, and make sure that your narration is also one minute long. Record your narration and submit the audio file below.

Tehtävä arvioidaan arvosanalla 4-10.

Jos video ei näy ja osoiterivin alku on https, ota s pois (jää http) ja päivitä sivu. Jos tämäkään ei auta, laita viesti kurssin opettajalle (eeva.lehikoinen@otavanopisto.fi).


Otavan Opisto / Tarja Männikkö, Arto Silén ja Heli Viitanen

© 2015 Otavan Opisto