Remember, if the subject is singular (excluding I and You), put an –s or –es on the verb.
one dog wags three dogs wag
1. Words between the Subject and the Verb
This usually involves eliminating prepositional phrases. Look for the list of prepositional phrases in your book.
One of the boys (like, likes) to eat spinach with bananas.
Special prepositional phrases:
As well as . . . ., Together with . . . , Along with. . . .
The man, as well as his wife, (is, are) going on vacation.
2. Verbs before Subjects
There are exceptions when the verb is in front of the
EXCEPTION: Beginning with “here” or “there”
There is a bird in the room.
There are two birds in the room.
EXCEPTION: Asking a question
Is he correct?
Why are they running?
EXCEPTION: Beginning with a prepositional phrase
In the desk is the key.
In the desk are the keys.
EXCEPTION: Beginning with an –ing word (sometimes)
Walking to the car are the kids.
Walking to the car is the child.
3. Compound Subjects
There are two kinds of compound situations.
USING “AND”: This makes a plural subject.
There is no –s on the verb.
EXAMPLE: The man and his daughter like
Walking down the street on that dark night were Peter and his
USING “OR” or NOR”: Think ignore.
The verb agrees with the subject
CLOSER to it.
EXAMPLE: Either the father OR his daughters
win the prize.
Either the daughters OR the father
wins the prize.
Neither the students NOR their
teacher is correct.
Neither the teacher NOR the students are correct.
4. Indefinite Pronouns
Most end in –one, -body or –thing.
Others are the words each, either and neither.
THESE WORDS ARE SINGULAR (Add –s or –es to
The word BOTH is plural (no –s on verb).
EXAMPLES: Each of the students is correct.
Neither of the boys feels well.
EXCEPTIONS: ALL, SOME, MOST, HALF, NONE
These words can be singular or plural, depending on
EXAMPLES: Some of the cake is missing.
Some of the slices are missing.
5. Relative Pronouns: Who, Which, and That
Decide which word the relative pronoun refers to.
EXAMPLES: She is the one who comes in late.
Here are the reports that were
Money = singular
Every NOUN and NOUN = singular (-s on verb)
Each NOUN and NOUN = singular (-s on verb)
QUIZ: Fix the verb. Make it agree with the subject in the present tense.
The plinky of the sneels plunk the schoom.
The blootum of the yourlies vrick the wop.