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10 Commonly Misused Words And How To Use Them Correctly

Posted by Denise Lee on October 31, 2017

We may use English in everyday life, but you may be surprised to know that many primary school students misuse some pretty common words! Help fine-tune your child’s language precision and learn about some commonly misused words.

Language precision is important in school and in life. When your child writes in a coherent and accurate manner, he or she becomes a better composition writer who expresses himself or herself well. Clear communication is important in helping your primary school child become a confident thinker and speaker.

Why Is It Important To Use The Right Words?

  1. Their vs They’re

There is a possessive determiner. What does that mean? It is a word that indicates possession. For example, “This is their car. It belongs to them.”

This is different from “They’re” which is a contraction of a two-word phrase, “They are”.
For example, “They’re going to the park in the afternoon.”

  1. Affect Vs Effect

The word “affect” is a verb — an action word. To affect a situation is to have an impact on it. For example, “How hard you work will affect how well you do in the exams.”

However, the word “effect” is a noun — it is the name of a condition that indicates change.  An effect is the impact itself. For example, “The effect of your hard work is that you’ve done well in the exams.”

Read More: Your Lower Primary Child at The 2021 PSLE Changes

  1. Fetch Vs Collect

This is a tricky one! Both “fetch” and “collect” are verbs / action words, but they mean different things entirely! When you fetch something, you are going somewhere to retrieve something or someone and then returning to your starting point. For example, “I am leaving the dining room to go to the kitchen to fetch Mother a cup of tea.”

However, if you are collecting something, you are simply going from point A to point B to pick something up. For example, “John has gone to the post office to collect a parcel.”

  1. Practice vs Practise

The word “practice” is a noun, while the word “practise” is a verb. An easy way to remember is that the last three letters, “practice”(noun) also spells out a noun — “- ice”. For example, “Kelly cannot join us for the concert as she has to attend dance practice tonight.”

However, “practise” is a verb / action word. It indicates the actual activity that is taking place. For example, “In preparation for the upcoming concert, I practise my dance routine every day.”

Download the Full Guide On 10 Commonly Misused Words

Download the TLL Guide To 10 Commonly Misused Words and A Special Practice Test

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Topics: primary english