You're Umbrella? Its Over Their. ACK!!

You're, it's, and there...these are three of the most troublesome words in the English language.  It's because they have siblings who sound just like them, even though their meanings are very different.   

Here's my breakdown on these tricksters:

1.  YOUR vs. YOU'RE

Your (possessive - it's yours) umbrella is going to be helpful if you're (you are) out in the rain.  Your must be followed by a noun - your what?  You're must be replaceable with 'you are.'  

2.  IT'S vs. ITS

It's (it is) going to rain today.   The sky is going to open up its clouds (possessive - the clouds belong to the sky.)  If you can replace it's with 'it is', use it's.  If you can't, use its.


They're (they are) going to take their (possessive - always followed by a noun) umbrellas over there (a place opposite of here.)  They're must be replaceable with 'they are.'   Their always means belonging to them.  If it's not either one of these, it's there.

Got it?  You can bookmark this page and use it as a cheat sheet.  I'll never tell.  


Cranberry Morning said...

Haha. I hope you'll do a post sometime on the overuse of apostrophes! Drives me crazy. I can't tell you how many signs I see that have an apostrophe when they don't need one. Evidently many people think that if there's an 's', there needs to be an apostrophe. sigh.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness!!! Thank you so much for this post ! I tutor and this is a great, simple way to explain this to one of my students!

A Joyful Chaos said...

This needs to be printed and handed out at street corners until everyone finally gets it. It's not that hard!

I tried not to look at the title of the post too long though. I almost got a headache trying to read it. :)

Aditi said...

Haha....the title of the post cracked me up!! Great tutorial :D

Unknown said...

I know it's (it is) not the same thing, but when they did the whole white board sign at mom's rehab facility they put "WELLCOME" in big letters and have left it that way for 3 weeks. And one of the admin people keeps saying irregardless, which makes me nuts!

Jo-Anne's Ramblings said...

I have to think a bit about the it's and its but the other words I am ok with