Raoul's China Saloon (V4.0 Beta)

The Teachers' Lounge => Teacher's Tips (ON-TOPIC) => Topic started by: Raoul F. Duke on July 02, 2008, 06:12:06 AM

Title: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on July 02, 2008, 06:12:06 AM
Upon many year's of reading this' s'ite, I've come to the s'ad conclus'ion that way too many expat Englis'h teacher's, even thos'e with res'pectable teaching credential's, can't tell an apos'trophe from a dead crab.

If thi's were a web'site for fan's of Wheel of Fortune  or WCW Wre'stlemania, thi's probably wouldn't bother me s'o much. But we're not, and it doe's.

S'o, a's a public s'ervice, here are the rules' for us'ing an apo'strophe. Might want ta look into 'em. bfbfbfbfbf

Please. llllllllll

The Apostrophe
Brought to you by the Purdue University Online Writing Lab

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The apostrophe has three uses:

1) to form possessives of nouns
2) to show the omission of letters
3) to indicate certain plurals of lowercase letters.

Apostrophes are NOT used for possessive pronouns or for noun plurals, including acronyms.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Forming possessives of nouns
To see if you need to make a possessive, turn the phrase around and make it an "of the..." phrase. For example:

the boy's hat = the hat of the boy
three days' journey = journey of three days

If the noun after "of" is a building, an object, or a piece of furniture, then no apostrophe is needed!

room of the hotel = hotel room

door of the car = car door

leg of the table = table leg

Once you've determined whether you need to make a possessive, follow these rules to create one.

• add 's to the singular form of the word (even if it ends in -s):
the owner's car
James's hat

• add 's to the plural forms that do not end in -s:

the children's game
the geese's honking

• add ' to the end of plural nouns that end in -s:

houses' roofs
three friends' letters

• add 's to the end of compound words:

my brother-in-law's money
 • add 's to the last noun to show joint possession of an object:

Todd and Anne's apartment
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Showing omission of letters
Apostrophes are used in contractions. A contraction is a word (or set of numbers) in which one or more letters (or numbers) have been omitted. The apostrophe shows this omission. Contractions are common in speaking and in informal writing. To use an apostrophe to create a contraction, place an apostrophe where the omitted letter(s) would go. Here are some examples:

don't = do not

I'm = I am

he'll = he will

who's = who is

shouldn't = should not

didn't = did not

could've= could have (NOT "could of"!)

'60 = 1960
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Forming plurals of lowercase letters
Apostrophes are used to form plurals of letters that appear in lowercase; here the rule appears to be more typographical than grammatical, e.g. "three ps" versus "three p's." To form the plural of a lowercase letter, place 's after the letter. There is no need for apostrophes indicating a plural on capitalized letters, numbers, and symbols (though keep in mind that some editors, teachers, and professors still prefer them). Here are some examples:

p's and q's = a phrase indicating politeness, possibly from "mind your pleases and thankyous"?

Nita's mother constantly stressed minding one's p's and q's.

three Macintosh G4s = three of the Macintosh model G4

There are two G4s currently used in the writing classrom.

many &s = many ampersands

That printed page has too many &s on it.

the 1960s = the years in decade from 1960 to 1969

The 1960s were a time of great social unrest.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Don't use apostrophes for possessive pronouns or for noun plurals.
Apostrophes should not be used with possessive pronouns because possessive pronouns already show possession -- they don't need an apostrophe. His, her, its, my, yours, ours are all possessive pronouns. Here are some examples:

wrong: his' book
correct: his book

wrong: The group made it's decision.
correct: The group made its decision.

(Note: Its and it's are not the same thing. It's is a contraction for "it is" and its is a possesive pronoun meaning "belonging to it." It's raining out= it is raining out. A simple way to remember this rule is the fact that you don't use an apostrophe for the possesives his or hers, so don't do it with its!)

 
wrong: a friend of yours'
correct: a friend of yours

wrong: She waited for three hours' to get her ticket.
correct: She waited for three hours to get her ticket.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Proofreading for apostrophes
A good time to proofread is when you have finished writing the paper. Try the following strategies to proofread for apostrophes:

• If you tend to leave out apostrophes, check every word that ends in -s or -es to see if it needs an apostrophe.

• If you put in too many apostrophes, check every apostrophe to see if you can justify it with a rule for using apostrophes.

We have interactive exercises on using apostrophes: you can try apostrophe exercise one ( http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/interact/g_apostEX1.html ) or apostrophe exercise two ( http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/interact/g_apostEX2.html ).
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Lotus Eater on July 02, 2008, 07:20:29 AM
Aha.. now we will all have to write correctly, use our spell checker and punctuate appropriately.  There are going to be some sad souls!!

<Yep, especially you. -R>
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: George on July 02, 2008, 07:47:32 AM
I'm already the spell checker. Raoul will have to be the apostrophe checker.
I wouldn't worry tooo much, Laoban. Other Forums are waaaaay worse!..........and don't tell me I should use Fora. This isn't Latin class!
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: AMonk on July 02, 2008, 09:30:15 AM
Other Forums are waaaaay worse!..........and don't tell me I should use Fora. This isn't Latin class!

"Forums" is an acceptable alternative in English.  (In Latin it would be "Fori", if you're talking of plural/multiple locations).
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: ericthered on July 02, 2008, 09:34:43 AM
Non scholae sed vitae discipuli....need to watch those apostrophes....
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Schnerby on July 02, 2008, 09:37:05 AM
I proofread for pay. I cannot proofread after hours.
This is a legitimate excuse for poor typing!
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: china-matt on July 02, 2008, 10:26:25 AM
I'm with Schnerby on this one. Plus, I let a lot of things slide when I read most forums.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: AMonk on July 02, 2008, 11:29:23 AM
Sorry, people, but I'm with Raoul and George on this one. 

Barring a few typos (on account of racing), I cringe whenever I encounter bad English, mispelt words or misplaced apostrophes.  They are worse than fingernails screeching down a backboard.  They can ruin a perfectly good novel, and make me avoid certain Posts (generally on other websites).
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Schnerby on July 02, 2008, 11:51:50 AM
I can see where you are coming from. If you're reading a book you can reasonably expect a typo-free read. If you're reading a webpage I think you even can reasonably expect spell check.

On a forum typos can and will happen.
As for apostropes, I'm not going to chuck 'em in willy nilly, but I'm also not going to think too hard about the rules or refer to grammar posts/threads.

Can't we just let our hair down a little?

Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: George on July 02, 2008, 12:10:32 PM
Quote
As for apostropes
Quote
Can't we just let our hair down a little?

Not if you spell like that!! bibibibibi ahahahahah ahahahahah
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Schnerby on July 02, 2008, 12:21:29 PM
See, I know how to spell apostrophe but my cold fingers don't know how to type it! 
An apostrope is a bit like a llama, FYI  ahahahahah  ahahahahah

What I'm asking is, can we just appreciate the content without correcting each other's spelling/grammar/usage/style?
We are all (or at least mostly) teaching English so we can all (or at least mostly) use it properly. Let's not get petty.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: George on July 02, 2008, 12:36:40 PM
OTOH......if you consider your post is worthy, the least you can do is make sure it's correctly written.
OTOOH...some typos make for good entertainment.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: cheekygal on July 02, 2008, 02:05:12 PM
I choose not to use them  afafafafaf They areNT that important to me KHERE  agagagagag
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: LaowaiSaosao on July 02, 2008, 02:20:13 PM
Schnerby, I proofread for pay like you, but have the opposite reaction out of hours - I continue to notice all the mistakes even when it's not my job to correct them, my husband thinks it's great when I find mistakes in newspapers and on TV (I've given up watching CCTV9 because it's so annoying).

That said, although I notice them they don't bother me on a forum like this as it's not a workplace so I'm not too worried about people making mistakes, we all make typos after all and if we had to spell check everything everytime it would definitely limit my creativity and interest in posting.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on July 02, 2008, 06:31:22 PM
Just venting some frustration, really.
There's no dress code for English here; kinda figure it's up to us individually to do that.

I got no problem with a good honest typo. We all make 'em.
I god no problem with people writing in a hurriedly. Some of us...that's just their style.
Using non-standard stuff to produce some character is great...no problem there.

But there's a distressingly large group of us on here that keep making the same mistakes, again and again and again...with apostrophes being perhaps the most glaring example. This indicates that just maybe the authors don't really know how to drive that thing. bibibibibi

So...sorry. Feel a bit better now. I'll relax and try to remember which code it is that'll add a dead crab to our punctuation set. agagagagag
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: George on July 02, 2008, 09:08:36 PM
Quote
people writing in a hurriedly
OK. Now start a thread on the proper use of adverbs! bibibibibi
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Ruth on July 03, 2008, 04:01:20 AM
Yeah, and while you're creating new threads, could you start one on the use of to, two and too and another one on your and you're?  Those are the errors repeated on this forum that most get under my skin.  But, checking spelling and grammar is not why I come here.

Methinks Raoul has too much time on his hands in [cue music, please] Oklahoma.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Escaped Lunatic on July 04, 2008, 02:39:46 PM
I'm sure it's its that's caused Raoul's distress.

Ruth, your issue is that you're annoyed because there are two too many ways to spell to.

 axaxaxaxax


Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Ruth on July 04, 2008, 11:37:15 PM
Escaped Lunatic, "Your write!!"  ahahahahah
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Con ate dog on July 06, 2008, 06:49:05 PM
There their they're, kids, don't get upset.  bpbpbpbpbp
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: adamsmith on July 07, 2008, 04:43:24 AM
no, There, they're their kids, don,t be upset bfbfbfbfbf
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: joe.thinker on July 07, 2008, 05:57:16 AM
iM s'o happie this thred gaht start'ed !
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Escaped Lunatic on July 08, 2008, 12:31:40 AM
If I can skip the current pun-ishment, I've got my own peeve along these lines...

A southern gentleman might address a group of people as y'll, being short for you all, or all of you.

A redneck will use y'all to address a single person (perhaps short for "yep, I'm too dumb to know singular from plural).   llllllllll
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Ruth on July 08, 2008, 09:09:56 AM
But the redneck is refering to you, yourself, and you when he says "y'all".
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: DWA on July 08, 2008, 10:27:26 AM
I get a real chuckle ahahahahah outa this thread.  It's a good change from the usually wrangling and other stuff we usually wank about.....

Way to go Raoul !~! agagagagag
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: china-matt on July 08, 2008, 10:49:48 AM
Escaped Lunatic, would you prefer a Pittsburghese version for you (pl.): "Yinz"
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Ruth on July 08, 2008, 11:37:44 AM
Never heard that one, China-matt. When we were kids we used to say 'youse', as in "Youse guys wanna come out and play?"  My mother (the school teacher) beat it out of me   cbcbcbcbcb  Okay, I made up the 'beat' part.  Let's say nagged and corrected it out of me.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Escaped Lunatic on July 08, 2008, 02:52:50 PM
Yinz???  Wo bu ming bai.

Youse.  Ming bai.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: DaDan on July 09, 2008, 12:59:40 AM
when does the punch line come?
 mmmmmmmmmm
I've been reading this thread every couple days looking fo`it...
but I be am startin fo to tink it be one serious complaint by da kine folk who be tinkin their scoolin an upbringin done ben betta than us ottas....



Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: china-matt on July 09, 2008, 01:53:14 AM
Yinz gotta try this one. Could be a good lesson the next time a student brings up "standard" English accents.
http://www.pittsburghese.com/ (http://www.pittsburghese.com/)
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Nolefan on October 29, 2008, 09:34:21 AM
uhm.. the 3 little words thread is making me bring this one back up...

" that's not fine " is short for " that is not fine" which is a 4 words
" now I'm tired " is short for "now I am tired" which is also 4 words

just because we use an apostrophe, it don't mean the word vanished... back when I was in college, those " 's" and " 'll "  counted as a full word!!!
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: teleplayer on October 29, 2008, 01:28:17 PM
uhm.. the 3 little words thread is making me bring this one back up...

" that's not fine " is short for " that is not fine" which is a 4 words
" now I'm tired " is short for "now I am tired" which is also 4 words

just because we use an apostrophe, it don't mean the word vanished... back when I was in college, those " 's" and " 'll "  counted as a full word!!!


I was wondering when this little item was going to be challenged! I'm guilty too! agagagagag
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Escaped Lunatic on October 30, 2008, 12:12:15 AM
When one is restricted to only 3 words, I think that contractions are a valid way to stay within the rules, as are other commonly used abbreviations that might reduce word count while conveying meaning.

FYI's ok, right?   ahahahahah


Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on June 07, 2010, 02:48:34 PM
Upon reading recent posts, it seems that, gosh, this thread is as fresh and relevant as ever it was. bibibibibi

I do have a pet peeve about this, I guess...certainly coming from English teachers. I can't help it...when one consistently misuses an apostrophe in what's otherwise supposed to be good English, here is the mental picture I get:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/RaoulSaloon/Saloonies/you_might_be_a_redneck.jpg)

...no matter how hard I try not to. bibibibibi
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on December 08, 2010, 05:50:44 PM
Hmmmm...time to bump this thread up again. Might even make it a sticky.
This thread is OBVIOUSLY NOT BEING READ ENOUGH! llllllllll
(Maybe that should be "OBVIOUS'LY NOT BEING RED ENUFF" instead?)

There's not even a trace of "better-than-you" at work here. Many of us, including me, sometimes write in dialects, etc. for effect, and that's cool. Some of us, such as our old and dear friend Da Dan, are not English teachers at all, and therefore free to write any damn way they want to.

The point is, if you're going to come on here and present yourself as an English teacher, you'd better be prepared to demonstrate a command of the English language at least better than that of the gentleman with the well-ventilated bathroom pictured above.

If you can't do that, perhaps a career re-evaluation might be in order. bibibibibi kkkkkkkkkk
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: piglet on December 08, 2010, 07:21:22 PM
Concur wholeheartedly RD
I also object to people saying "laying" when they mean "lying". It makes me think of chickens.
And why can nobody spell the word "definitely" correctly?
It's really not that hard,is it?
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Paul on December 09, 2010, 05:09:03 AM
Other Forums are waaaaay worse!..........and don't tell me I should use Fora. This isn't Latin class!

"Forums" is an acceptable alternative in English.  (In Latin it would be "Fori", if you're talking of plural/multiple locations).

Ahem!  You'd have been beaten with a leather strap for that remark at my school!!
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Stil on December 09, 2010, 01:49:19 PM
Mmmmmm, Leeeeather
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: latefordinner on December 10, 2010, 03:17:22 AM
"Now I lay me down to sleep" - does this conjure an image of crapping feathers or what?
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: piglet on December 10, 2010, 07:53:12 AM
yes but that is poetry, and "lay me down' is not the same somehow as "I was laying on the floor when... " as my students write. But it's a valid question,latefordinner. You have got me scratching my head there
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on December 10, 2010, 04:48:37 PM
Mmmmmm, Leeeeather

Well, you might be interested to know that we have leather straps at The Saloon, too. afafafafaf
Of course, they're reserved only for people who try to take On-Topic Area threads off-topic, and even then only used to strap them to the table of our makeshift surgical facilities down behind the scream-proof walls of our basement, to cut down their wriggling and howling while we harvest their organs.

Tonight, ze Tortles, zey look ze hongry. uuuuuuuuuu


OK, that's done. Now to go out and try to get lied! afafafafaf
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: nicenightforawalk on July 27, 2011, 09:19:04 PM
Well Ive just read the thread, so the bump was worth it. Ill play safe though, and leave the apostrophes out totally!  bjbjbjbjbj

Ill apologise in advance for my bad English ... I re-read a post I made on another forum recently and I have adopted Chinglish. 'I have been studied this subject for 5 years'

Worryingly I find I myself doing this more and more.
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: piglet on July 29, 2011, 05:21:00 AM
Well I have recently read (not here fortunately) epeople who can't differentiate between their and there, or they're.
It's extremely annoying. llllllllll
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: elzoog on August 25, 2011, 12:32:26 AM
I thought of this thread immediately after reading this news article.

http://shine.yahoo.com/event/fallfashion/grammar-fail-on-old-navys-college-t-shirts-uh-oh-2531551/
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on August 25, 2011, 12:49:33 AM
You and I had the same exact thought. agagagagag
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Stil on August 25, 2011, 12:57:36 AM
(http://i888.photobucket.com/albums/ac89/ChangshaNotes/Micellaneous/apostrophe-sm2.jpg)
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: china-matt on August 25, 2011, 02:40:02 AM
 bkbkbkbkbk

Goes along with a great post I saw from the FakeEditor on twitter about capitalization. I'll repeat it here since we don't have a capitalization thread. "Capitalization distinguishes between helping your uncle Jack off a horse, and helping your uncle jack off a horse."

Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: dragonsaver on August 25, 2011, 03:33:42 AM
 bkbkbkbkbk axaxaxaxax
Title: Re: A Resource for English Teachers: How to Use a F@%king Apostrophe
Post by: Raoul F. Duke on August 25, 2011, 04:09:40 AM
Excellent, Stil! bfbfbfbfbf agagagagag ahahahahah