Is Your Grammar Better Than a 5th Grader’s?


By: Lauren Lubas

6 Min Quiz

Image: Nick White / DigitalVision / Getty IMages

About This Quiz

The majority of our grammar skills come to us when we are in grade school (or grammar school). In high school, we don't really get grammar lessons, as the curriculum is centered around writing five-paragraph essays and answering questions that prove we read a book. 

After high school, our grammar skills fall dramatically. Everything we learned at a young age falls by the wayside as we succumb to the grammar social media allows... which is pretty much anything. There aren't a lot of grammar nerds left to call out poor grammar skills anymore, as we are now called "trolls" for trying to teach people the difference between "your" and "you're." The bite back on those who attempt to teach people the fundamentals of the English language on social media has led to the grammar police throwing up their hands and saying: "Okay, be wrong, but don't get mad when people don't understand you."

If you miss the good old days of people at least ATTEMPTING to form a complete sentence that has things like punctuation and subject-verb agreement, you should know that you're not alone. However, the question is: can you walk with the big dogs in the grammar circuit? Take this quiz and find out if you have better grammar skills than a 5th grader.

Which of these sentences means "he did a good job"?

If you say, "He did good," It means he did good the way that Superman does good. If you want to say that he did a good job, you'd say "He did well."


Which of these words ISN'T a preposition?

Propositions put things in places. They usually relate to the noun or pronoun in a sentence.


Which of these sentences is an example of a comma splice?

A comma splice is when the writer uses a comma between two complete sentences or thoughts. The correct punctuation marks for these are either a period or a semi-colon.


Which sentence DOESN'T use the apostrophe correctly?

The contraction "you're" means "you are." The sentence "Who's going out with you are mom" doesn't make sense.


What is the plural form of the noun "church"?

Nouns ending in -sh or -ch take on an -es in their plural form. There are exceptions to the rule, of course.


Which sentence has the proper punctuation?

Interrogative sentences, or questions, end with question marks. In English grammar, only one question mark is necessary.


Which sentence is correctly punctuated?

In this sentence, "because" is a subordinating conjunction. It shows a reason why he went to the store.


Which sentences uses apostrophes properly?

This apostrophe removes the letter "i" from the phrase "she is." Without the apostrophe, the sentence would read "She is not going with us."


Which sentence is in the past tense?

To understand the tense of a sentence, look for the verb. Regular past tense verbs are signaled by an -ed at the end of the word.


What does an adjective do?

An adjective modifies a noun. An adverb modifies a verb. Adjectives can be colors, sizes, and other various traits that can help describe nouns.


Can you identify the run-on sentence?

A run-on sentence is when there are two subjects with verbs in the same sentence with no punctuation to separate them.


What is the article in this sentence: "She wanted to find a boat."?

Articles are considered adjectives. They are used to signal a noun or refer to nouns.


What is a linking verb?

Examples of linking verbs include: is, were, appear, look, and taste. These aren't actions; they're states of being and conditions.


Can you finish this sentence properly? "The _______ dogs had three bones."

For this sentence, the proper form of the adjective here should be singular. The spotted dogs had three bones.


Their, there, and they're are all examples of what?

Homophones are words that sound the same, but they are spelled differently and all of them have different meanings. With the exception of "your" and "you're," "there," "their," and "they're" are the most misused words on social media.


Which of these verbs is NOT the correct form of a past tense verb?

The past tense of "to find" is "found." It is considered an irregular verb.


Can you identify what is wrong with this sentence? "She never had nothing bad to say about anyone."

In the English language, the double negative is considered incorrect. While other languages allow multiple negatives in a single sentence, in English, they cancel each other out. This sentence should read "She never had anything bad to say about anyone."


Which of these is NOT a subject pronoun?

A subject pronoun can be used as the subject of a sentence. In this case, "me" cannot be used as a subject. The proper form of a first-person subject pronoun is "I."


Which sentence is correct?

Working with homophones can be difficult. That is why it's so important to know everything there is to know about apostrophes.


Can you fill in the blank to complete the sentence correctly? Winter is the ________ time of year.

Winter is the coldest time of year. Regular adjectives, such as "cold," add an -est to modify them further.


What is the correct form of the adjective in this sentence: "The _______ files were kept in a vault."

Just like verbs, adjectives can take on several different forms. By adding more or most to an adjective, you are further enhancing the noun, and making it more specific.


"The dog ate its bone": What is the pronoun and antecedent in this sentence?

The pronoun in this sentence comes after the antecedent. The pronoun is "its" and the antecedent the pronoun replaces is "dog."


Which of these is NOT a demonstrative adjective?

A demonstrative adjective signals "which one." Examples of demonstrative adjectives are this, that, these,and those.


Which of these is a proper noun?

A proper noun is a specific person, place, or thing. A city is general, but Chicago is a specific city.


Is "her" a subject pronoun or an object pronoun?

Object pronouns are always used after the action in the sentence. They cannot be used as the subject of the sentence.


Which of these is NOT a form of the verb "to be"?

The verb "to be" takes on many different forms in the English language. They include, was, is, are, am, and were.


How can you identify an irregular verb?

Irregular verbs are exceptions to the rules when it comes to forming tense. They don't take on the -d or -ed in the past tense. Irregular verbs include "to find" and "to think."


Where does the comma go in this sentence: "First of all there are a lot of different types of snakes."?

"First of all" is a transitional phrase. You always need a comma after transitional words and phrases.


Which word is the conjunction in this sentence: "I have three dogs, but I only have two cats."?

Conjunction words connect two sentences. Remember FANBOYS: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, and so.


What error is in this sentence: "The dogs has to go to the vet."?

An error in subject-verb agreement happens when a plural noun takes a singular verb. Instead, the subject should be "dog" or the verb should be "have"


Which sentence DOESN'T have a subject?

A subject is a noun (person, place, thing, or idea) that is doing something. A sentence is not complete without a subject.


"We aren't going to the grocery store today." Is this sentence in the past tense, present tense, or future tense?

Always look at the verb when you are considering tense. Regular verbs take on their normal form in the present tense.


Of these contractions, which one is incorrect?

Contractions take two words and shorten them. The apostrophe in a contraction signals letters that were taken out.


What is an antecedent?

The antecedent of a pronoun is the noun that said pronoun replaces. When you use pronouns, it's important that the antecedent is clear to the audience.


Which of these sentences is correct?

Whose is possessive while who's is a contraction for "who" and "is." The correct sentence here is "Whose family is in your car?"


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