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What Are Plural Pronouns? - Definition & Examples

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  • 0:04 Making Estimations
  • 1:40 Examples
  • 3:13 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: T.J. Hoogsteen

T.J. is currently a grade 5 teacher and Vice-Principal. He has a master's degree in Educational Administration and is working toward an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership.

In this lesson, you will learn about plural pronouns. How, when, and why to use plural pronouns will be discussed as well as some common examples. A quiz will follow the lesson.

Making Estimations

Steven and Stephanie went for a bike ride. Steven and Stephanie didn't stop for 3 hours. During the 3 hours of riding around, Steven and Stephanie saw a lot of interesting wildlife like porcupines, squirrels, and birds.

Did you get tired of reading the names Steven and Stephanie? They likely stuck out because they were repeated over and over again. When writing or speaking, we're often taught not to use words over and over again because it will bore the person reading or listening. But, how can using the same words be avoided, especially when talking about the same thing?

One way to avoid this repetition is to use pronouns, words that take the place of a noun. Some common pronouns are he, she, him, their, her, it, they. Even though this lesson will discuss pronouns, it will focus on a certain type, plural pronouns, or pronouns that refer to a plural noun (i.e. more than one person, place, or thing). A few examples of plural nouns are Steven and Stephanie, dogs, cities, and people. As mentioned, a singular pronoun takes the place of a singular noun. For example, instead of using ''Steven and Stephanie'' in every sentence, you can replace the names with ''them'', ''they'', or ''their''. Let's see how.

Steven and Stephanie went on a bike ride. They didn't stop for 3 hours. During their 3-hour bike ride they saw a lot of interesting wildlife like porcupines, squirrels, and birds.

The use of the pronouns ''they'' and ''their'' give this piece of writing enough variation, as the words Steven and Stephanie didn't get overused, while still being clear about who went on the bike ride and saw the animals.

Examples

Let's see some more examples. Here the first sentence will have regular nouns, and the second sentence will modify the example with pronouns.

  • Bill and I went for a walk in the woods. When Bill and I got there, a cougar chased Bill and me.
    • Bill and I went for a walk in the woods. When we got there, a cougar chased us.

In this example, ''we'' and ''us,'' take the place of ''Bill and I'' and prevent overuse.

  • Isaac and Mary are going to the mall. Isaac and Mary want to buy a present. Isaac and Mary are planning on going to a birthday party.
    • Isaac and Mary are going to the mall. They want to buy a present for their friend's birthday party.

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