- Mix It Up with Active and Passive Voice 主动和被动语态结合使用
In many English sentences, the subject is the one performing the action described by the verb of the sentence. This is called “active voice.”
- While the children played a game in the backyard, their dad prepared dinner.
Both clauses of this sentence contain active voice: children played (a game) and their dad prepared (dinner).
In other instances, the subject is being acted upon. Someone else is performing the action! This is “passive voice.”
- While a game was played by the kids, dinner was prepared by their dad.
This sentence also has two clauses, and both of them are written in the passive voice: the game was played (by the kids) while dinner was prepared (by their dad).
While it’s recommended to use passive voice sparingly (not often), you should know how to recognize and use both active and passive voices.
A good mix of active and passive verbs will make your English, especially written English, varied and colorful. Don’t be afraid of combinations!
Oxford Dictionaries has more great examples of active and passive voice usage.
- For Collective Nouns, Context Is Everything 对于集体名词，语境就是一切
Sometimes, a singular noun represents a group of people or a collection of things. Should it take a singular or a plural verb?
Is family singular or plural? Is government plural or singular? How about crowd or flock?
家庭是单数还是复数？ 政府是复数还是单数？ 人群或群众怎么样？
These types of nouns are known as collective nouns. You’ll treat them differently depending on context.
First, consider whether you’re operating in British English or American English.
In American English, collective nouns typically take a singular verb. For example:
- My familyloves me a lot.
- The American government isvoting on this issue today.
- The cast waspresent for the movie premiere.
There are two important exceptions that you’re likely to encounter in casual conversation: police and people.
Police and people always take a plural verb. 警察和人们总是采用复数动词。
- The Boston Police makeweekly reports on the matter.
- People are startingto wonder what’s going on.
However, in British English, collective nouns may take a singular or a plural verb, depending on the rest of the sentence. If the collective noun represents a group acting as one unit, it takes a singular verb. If the collective noun stands for several individuals or things acting independently, it takes a plural verb.
但是，在英式英语中，集体名词可能采用单数或复数动词，具体取决于句子的其余部分。 如果集体名词代表一个作为一个单位的群体，则它采用单数动词。 如果集体名词代表几个独立行事的个人或事物，则需要复数动词。
For example: 举例
- The visiting team is(The team is one unit that’s on the losing side of the game.)
- My family areall coming to the wedding. (“Family” stands for several different people who’ll arrive at the wedding, not necessarily together.)
- The staff disagreeon the deadline for the project. (The staff are employees who have different opinions about the project deadline.)
Whether you treat a collective noun as a singular or a plural, make sure that it stays that way.
Incorrect: The team is on a winning streak. They beat every other team so far.
不正确：is 和 they 不一致
Correct: The team is on a winning streak. It beat every other team so far.
正确：is 和 it 一致
Remember tip number six, and always keep the subject and the verb in agreement throughout. You’ll never be confused by collective nouns again!
- Always Use Complete Sentences, Not Sentence Fragments 保持句子完整性，而不是断句
The most basic sentence in English has two elements: a subject and a verb.
- She sings.
- I write.
- They survived.
Having a subject and a verb is the minimum requirement for English sentences. If either of those is missing, the sentence isn’t complete. It becomes a sentence fragment instead:
- Walking past the house
- Survived the ordeal
- Prefer this sandwich
Sentence fragments shouldn’t be used alone. The examples above can be easily made into full sentences or become part of a longer sentence. For example:
不应单独使用句子片段。 上面的例子可以很容易地成为完整的句子或成为更长句子的一部分。 例如：
- Walking past the house, I noticed the lights were on.
- She is happy to have survived the ordeal.
- I would prefer this sandwich.
Make it a rule for yourself to always write in complete sentences. Check if there’s a subject and a verb in your sentence. If not, insert one! Connecting sentence fragments into more complex sentences will make your English speech and English writing correct and varied.
让自己总是写完整句子的一个规则。 检查句子中是否有主语和动词。 如果没有，请插入一个！ 将句子片段连接成更复杂的句子将使您的英语演讲和英语写作更加正确和多变。
- Learn Some Question Tags to Simplify Your Life 学习一些反义疑问句来简化你的生活
You know those short questions that sometimes get added to the end of a sentence, don’t you?
These are called question tags, and they’re neat, aren’t they?
They can make your life easier, especially in an English conversation, because they allow you to easily turn statements into yes or no questions.
The rule for forming a question tag is simple: if the main verb of the sentence is positive, the question tag takes its negative form. If the main verb of the sentence is negative (has “not” in it), the question tag takes its positive form. A question tag will always conform to the main verb of the sentence.
形成反义疑问句的规则很简单：如果句子的主句动词是肯定，则问句采用否定形式。 如果句子的主句动词是否定的（其中包含“not”），则问句采用肯定形式。 反义疑问句将始终符合句子的主句动词。
- She forgot her lunch, didn’tshe? or She didn’t forget her lunch, did she?
- He isn’t going to the party, ishe? or He is going to the party, isn’the?
However, here’s one tricky thing to remember: if the main verb of the sentence is “I am,” the question tag that corresponds is “aren’t I.”
- I amgoing to have to change my plans, aren’t I?
If you don’t feel like using a contraction to form a negative question tag, be careful with the placement of “not.”
- She forgot her lunch, didshe not?
- He is going to the party, ishe not?
- Feel Free to Use Dangling Prepositions 学会运用悬空介词
Whenever a preposition gets separated from its object in the sentence (or when it doesn’t have an object at all), it becomes a dangling preposition.
- Whomare you talking to?
- You can come downstairs; there’s nothing to be afraid of.
There is a grammar myth that dangling prepositions are unacceptable. You may encounter native English speakers who believe it’s incorrect to end a sentence with a preposition. However, dangling prepositions aren’t a grammatical error.
有一种错误的语法观念，认为悬挂介词是不可接受的。 您可能会遇到母语为英语的人，他们认为用介词结束句子是不正确的。 然而，悬空介词不是语法错误。
Actually, avoiding dangling prepositions may result in some awkward sentences! For example:
- To whomare you talking?
- You can come downstairs; there’s nothing of whichto be afraid.
These sentences are correct, but not very desirable. As long as you understand dangling prepositions and their grammatical role, feel free to use them!
- But Be Careful with Dangling Participles in Complex Sentences 但要谨慎对待复杂句子中的悬空分词
Participles (words formed from verbs) are often used to introduce a subordinate clause in a sentence.
- Doingmy homework, I noticed that a few of my notes were missing.
- That little girl, having droppedher ice cream, is crying uncontrollably.
- Bornin Canada, he spoke English flawlessly.
In these cases, participles always relate to the subject of the sentence. They describe the action that the subject performs or the state that the subject is in.
The examples above would still have the same meaning if rewritten the following way:
- WhileI was doing my homework, I noticed that a few of my notes were missing.
- That little girl has droppedher ice cream and is crying
- Because he wasborn in Canada, he spoke English flawlessly.
Dangling participles can cause problems for English learners; they can make it easier to forget or confuse the subject-participle relationship. A very common mistake many English learners (and even native speakers!) make is to use a participle that doesn’t relate to the subject of the sentence (a dangling participle).
悬挂分词可能会给英语学习者带来麻烦; 他们可以更容易忘记或混淆主语 - 分词关系。 许多英语学习者（甚至是母语人士）所犯的一个非常常见的错误是使用与句子主语无关的分词（悬挂式分词）。
- Walkingto the university, the rain started to fall, so he opened his umbrella.
This sentence is incorrect! Clearly, it was he who was walking to the university, not the rain. A grammatically correct way to form this sentence would be:
这句话不对！ 显然，是他走路去大学，而不是下雨。 这句话的正确语法是：
- Walkingto the university, he opened his umbrella, because the rain started to fall.
Another example of an error:另一个错误例子：
- Having traveledaround the world, few countries impressed me more than New Zealand.
Here, the dangling participle makes it sound like it was countries that traveled around the world. You can put the sentence right by rewriting it:
- Having traveledaround the world, I was impressed by few countries more than New Zealand.
or even: 甚至
- Few countries impressed me more than New Zealand during my travels around the world.
As you can see, dangling participles create confusing and grammatically incorrect sentences that reflect poorly on your writing. Unlike dangling prepositions, dangling participles should be avoided!
English grammar may not be your favorite part of English learning, but don’t be discouraged. Taking it step by step, one tip at a time, is how you become proficient in the language. In these 12 English grammar tips, we covered common errors that English learners encounter. Master those and you’ll become an English grammar pro in no time. Good luck!
英语语法可能不是你最喜欢的英语学习的一部分，但不要气馁。 一步一个脚印，一次一个小贴士，就是你如何熟练掌握这门语言。 在这12个英语语法提示中，我们涵盖了英语学习者遇到的常见错误。 掌握这些，你很快就会成为英语语法专家。 祝你好运！