The plan of today’s class is to talk about
- What are Nouns
- Different types of nouns
- Some rules to recognise nouns in a sentence
- Quiz #4
- Answers to Quiz #3
- Shout out to the five fastest correct entries
Let’s get going.
Let’s meet the Noun –
We’re going to play a game of ‘I Spy’. In this game, we look around ourselves and everything that we see say ‘I Spy’ – e.g. I Spy a camera, two lights, Simby, balcony, trees, a bird, a glass of water, a tripod, a bunch of flowers, a pile of cushions etc.
Pause the video and write down at least 10 things you can see around you.
Now look at your list – chances are they are all nouns – TV, laptop, bed, mother, a jug of milk, some children, clouds or a car.
A noun is a naming word – it can be a name of a person, place, living things like animals, birds, non living things like an object or even an idea.
Nouns are the most common part of a sentence and most sentences contain at least one noun.
Let’s see how this works
- This is Jerry
- He is from America
- He is a mouse
- Jerry has a squeaky voice
Quickly try to find the nouns in these four sentences and put them down as a comment.
Now I will give you some tests / rules to help you identify the nouns in a sentence
Try to spot the name of a person, place, living being, thing or idea – you will know that it is a noun
So, Jerry is the name of an animal. America is the name of a place. Mouse is the name of an animal. In the fourth sentence, both Jerry and voice are nouns. Voice is a thing – it is also an idea. The reason we put in ‘idea’ into the list is because these are things that you cannot touch, feel or pick up. These are intangible things.
Notice that I did not circle the ‘he’ or ‘this’ – these are pronouns and we will discuss them later.
2. Ask a question ‘who’ or ‘what’ or ‘where’ and usually the noun will be the answer. Let us see some examples.
The squirrels finished the entire basket of nuts.
Who finished the entire basket of nuts – The squirrel
What did the squirrels finish – the nuts
Where were the nuts kept – in the basket
So, in this sentence, squirrels, basket and nuts are nouns.
Therefore, in a sentence, there can be multiple nouns
Let’s go back to – Jerry has a squeaky voice
Who has a squeaky voice – Jerry
What does Jerry have – a voice – (squeaky is just describing the voice)
In the previous class we mentioned that when you ask the question of who or what – the answer is the subject of the sentence. Now connect that to nouns and most of the time nouns are the subjects of most sentences.
The Eiffel Tower is in Paris.
What is in Paris? – The Eiffel tower
Where is the Eiffel Tower – in Paris.
Both Eiffel Tower and Paris are nouns.
3. Rule #3 is to try the ‘I spy’ technique we used earlier on in the video – if you can spy something, then it is likely a noun
Now, notice how Eiffel Tower, Paris, Jerry and America were starting with a capital letter. These are proper nouns.
Nouns can be of 2 types – Proper noun and common noun.
Proper noun is the specific name of a particular person or place whereas a common noun is a more generic version of that name. Proper nouns always are capitalized whereas common nouns only start with a capital letter at the beginning of a sentence.
The way to remember this is – common nouns are for common things – very general and proper nouns are for particular and special things – very proper.
e.g. She ate an apple – since this begins with a small letter, you know it’s a fruit.
But if you read about “Apple” then you realize it’s probably the computer company (or possibly someone named Apple).
– beetle = insect
– Beetle = car made by Volkswagen
And that is why it is important to know the difference
Let’s take a look at my Monopoly game to understand this better –
This is a house and this is a hotel. These are common nouns. All of them are hotels so it’s quite common, nothing unique about the particular hotel. But Trafalgar Square is a proper noun, since it is a specific place in London and hence it is written in capital letters.
Let’s look at common nouns – these are names given to every person or thing of the same kind. There are three different types of common nouns
- The basic common noun – e.g. milk, cookie, glass, lion
- Collective nouns e.g.
- The batch of cookies Sarah made was delicious.
- The crowd rushed to the ticket counter as soon as it opened.
- The scurry of squirrels dug holes throughout Gopal’s garden.
A collection is basically a group of items. So, the words batch, crowd and scurry in the sentences are single words for a group or collection of the same persons or objects. Hence batch, crowd and scurry are collective nouns.
Some other collective nouns are
a bevy of girls
a bunch of flowers
a pack of dogs
an army of caterpillars
a bale of turtles
Now that we have spoken about the names of people, living and nonliving things, we need to talk more about the names of ideas. These nouns are called abstract nouns. Abstract nouns can include:
- i) qualities like courage, wisdom, humility,
- ii) feelings like love, hatred,
iii) actions like a smile, movement, creation and
- iv) situations such as famine, childhood, happiness
- The soldiers showed great patriotism and bravery at the war front.
- Heavy rains and flooding led to famine in the village.
In these sentences, patriotism, bravery, famine are the abstract nouns.
Soldiers, war front, rains, flooding and village are common nouns.
Some more hacks that will help you identify a noun –
a). If a word follows a, an and the it will be a noun – e.g. a cat, the milk, an alligator
b). If we are talking about quantities – chances are it will be a noun – some oil, many children, few clouds.
Pick out the Proper and common nouns. Also mention if the common nouns are collective or abstract. That means if the noun is a common noun, you get half a point for identifying it and half a mark for mentioning collective or abstract.
And also please give all 10 answers in the same message. It is impossible for us to locate your answers if they are in a few separate messages.
- Anna and Hannah run their own bakery.
- The coffee is too sweet to be consumed.
- The faculty of the school was against having classes during the weekend.
- The first aid team rushed to the spot.
- Brevity is the soul of wit.
- An officer helped the villagers open bank accounts.
- The kids played continuously for four hours frustrating their mothers.
- Roy was reprimanded by his employer for his carelessness.
- Sara unwrapped the bar of chocolate and ate it in a minute.
- The regiment received medals from the president for fighting off the terrorists.
Now is the time for solutions. Let me show you the answers for last week’s Vocabulary Friday class.