Subject-Verb Agreement

Singular subjects go with singular verbs.

Examples of singular subjects: he, she, Alan, Sophia, friend, aunt, child, dog, cat, etc.

Examples of singular verbs: goes, drinks, plays, runs, does, knows, eats, barks, mews, etc.


He cycles to school daily.

She drinks a glass of lemonade every afternoon.

Alan plays with his neighbors in the evening.

Sophia runs as fast as a deer.

My friend does aerobics once a week.

The child usually eats bread and butter for breakfast.

Her cat mews when it is hungry.




Plural subjects go with plural verbs.

Examples of plural subjects: they, we, Jack and Jill, relatives, colleagues, men, roosters, watches, etc.

Examples of plural verbs: like, love, go, visit, call, play, crow, keep, etc.


They like shopping.

We love your fruit cake.

Jack and Jill go up the hill.

My relatives visit us every month.

Your colleagues often call you.

The men play basketball on Sundays.

The roosters crow early in the morning.

His watches keep good time.


Exceptional Case

'I' and 'you' are singular pronouns, but they take plural verbs.

Examples:

I watch TV in the evening.

I read whenever I am free.

You speak French fluently.

You play the saxophone well.

'You' can also be a plural pronoun, when it refers to more than one person. When it is a plural pronoun, it also takes a plural verb.


Exercises

Choose the correct answers.

1. Water ( freeze, freezes ) at 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. We ( keep, keeps ) our stamps in albums.

3. My friends and I ( fly, flies ) kites when the weather is windy.

4. Your dog ( growl, growls ) when it is angry.

5. Michael always ( complete, completes ) his work quickly.

6. My neighbors ( grow, grows ) vegetables in their backyards.

7. I ( know, knows ) the answer to this question.

8. The beggar ( beg, begs ) for money on the street every day.

9. All my aunts ( cook, cooks ) well.

10. You ( shut, shuts ) the windows before you go to bed at night.


Answers

1. freezes

2. keep

3. fly

4. growls

5. completes

6. grow

7. know

8. begs

9. cook

10. shut