You are here

Count nouns

Count nouns have two forms: singular and plural.

Singular count nouns refer to one person or thing:

a teacher a book a wish an idea

Plural count nouns refer to more than one person or thing:

teachers books wishes ideas

Singular count nouns

Singular count nouns cannot be used alone. They must have a determiner:

the English teacher that book a wish my latest idea
Singular count nouns 1

MultipleChoice_MTYwMjI=

Singular count nouns 2

GapFillTyping_MTU5MDg=

Plural count nouns

We usually add –s to make a plural noun:

book > books
school > schools
friend > friends

We add –es to nouns ending in –s, –ch, –sh, –ss, –x and –o:  

class > classes
watch > watches
gas > gases
wish > wishes
box > boxes
potato > potatoes

When a noun ends in a consonant and –y, we make the plural with –ies:

lady > ladies
country > countries
party > parties

If a noun ends in a vowel and –y, we simply add –s:

boy > boys
day > days
play > plays

Some common nouns have irregular plurals:

man > men
woman > women
child > children
person > people
foot > feet
Plural count nouns 1

GapFillTyping_MTU5MTA=

Plural count nouns 2

GapFillTyping_MTYwMjQ=


Plural count nouns do not have a general determiner when they refer to people or things in general:

Computers are very expensive.
Do you sell old books?

But they may have a specific determiner:

Those computers are very expensive.
The books in that shop are very expensive. 
Her sisters live there.

or a quantifier:

some new books a few teachers lots of good ideas

or a numeral:

two new books three wishes
Plural count nouns 3

MultipleChoice_MTYwMjU=

Plural count nouns 4

GapFillTyping_MTYxMTY=

Plural count nouns 5

GapFillDragAndDrop_MTYxMTg=

        
 

Comments

hi sir, may i ask,
why these words are singular noun ,
is it these words refer to plural/many
1.everyone 2.somebody 3.everybody 4.every month

Hello harizah,

These words are called 'indefinite pronouns' and you are correct that they are followed by a singular, not plural, verb, even though they describe more than one person or thing.  However, I'm not sure I can give you a rule as such - this is simply how they work in the language system and something which you need to remember.

I hope that clarifies it for you.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Singular count noun with quantifier like "some new books; a few teachers; lots of good ideas" and singular count nouns with numbers like "two new books; three wishes" become plural count nouns. is that right? if not how?

Hello Maruthi,

That is correct: when you use a quantifier like 'a few', 'some' or 'lots of', or when you use a number, countable nouns must be plural.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,

could you tell me the exact usages of the words " love" and "like". I get confused which one to use in my conversations.

thanks in advance

Hello zagrus,

Generally speaking, in most contexts 'love' is a stronger version of 'like'.  For example:

'Do you like horror films?'

'Oh yes, in fact I absolutely love them!'

I don't think there's anything more complex to it than that, but please reply if there's a specific example that you'd like me to comment on.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,
Thanks Mr. Peter for your help. Actually, when I tell my male students that I love them they start looking at each other in a suspicious way. So which one would be better " I love you " or " I like you" and what is the difference between these two sentences?

thanks in advance

Hello zagrus,

If we are talking about activities or objects, then 'love' is simply a stronger form of 'like'.  For example:

'I like playing football' > 'I really like playing football' > 'I love playing football'

'I like ice-cream' > 'I really like ice-cream' > 'I love ice-cream'

However, if we are talking to or about people, then the context is different and the meaning can be different, with 'love' meaning something romantic and deeply emotional rather than simply being a positive opinion on a person.  Of course, context is vital.  I can say 'I love Gene Hackman' and mean simply that he is one of my favourite actors, but if I were to say 'I love you' to a friend of mine then they may well understand something different and altogether more romantic.  On the other hand, if I said to a group 'I love you guys' then it would not have any romantic meaning.  As I said, context is vital.

I hope that clarifies it for you.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Is great, i need practise my English :)
Just listen is what i need most :)

Hi Zelia,

In case you hadn't seen it, I just wanted to point out that we have a lot of materials that you can use to practice your listening. Just click on "Listen & Watch" above, and you'll find hours and hours of audio and video that you can watch and listen to.

Best wishes,

Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Pages