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  1. #61
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    Quote Originally Posted by tufguy View Post
    I do understand when the whistle blew however, the only phrase I don't is when it is whistle blew. What kind of phrase is when its whistle blew.
    I don't see the phrase "when it is whistle blew" anywhere. It doesn't mean anything. It doesn't make sense.

    The phrase "when its whistle blew" tells us the time you took the kettle off the stove. What confuses you about it?

    - When refers to the time the whistle blew.

    - Its refers to the kettle.

    - The whistle is what is blowing.

    - Blew is what the whistle did.

    Now put it together: at the time the kettle's whistle blew.

    Is it still unclear?
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 14-Feb-2021 at 22:53. Reason: Fixed typo
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  2. #62
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    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    Quote Originally Posted by tufguy View Post
    when it is whistle blew
    You misunderstood the original, tufguy.

    When its whistle blew = when the whistle of the kettle (it) blew

    "its" is not a contraction of "it is". It is the possessive form of "it" - my whistle; your whistle; his whistle; its whistle; our whistle; their whistle. The contraction of "it is" is "it's", with an apostrophe.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. #63
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    The contraction of "it is" and "it has" is "it's", with an apostrophe.
    See above. Punctuation is not just decoration, tufguy. When you begin to read a little English every day you'll soon come to understand how it works. Your English won't make much progress until you do.
    I am not a teacher.

  4. #64
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    At the risk of being accused of posting political content, I say that a large majority of Americans don't understand the difference between it's and its and they never will. The British school system must be very superior to the American.

    I believe it has been seriously proposed to do away entirely with the apostophe on the grounds that so few people over here can use it correctly. What a stupid idea!
    Last edited by probus; 15-Feb-2021 at 01:24. Reason: Typo

  5. #65
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    At the risk of being accused of posting political content, I say that a large majority of Americans don't understand the difference between "it's" and "its" and they never will. The British school system must be very superior to the American.

    I believe it has been seriously proposed to do away entirely with the apostrophe on the grounds that so few people over here can use it correctly. What a stupid idea!
    I agree. And it's sad. Frankly, I blame the schools. They don't put enough emphasis on the basics. Too many people make mistakes they shouldn't make. They graduate from college not knowing basic things like how to make plurals. They don't know how to spell correctly.
    Not a professional teacher

  6. #66
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    At the risk of being accused of posting political content, I say that a large majority of Americans don't understand the difference between it's and its and they never will. The British school system must be very superior to the American.

    I believe it has been seriously proposed to do away entirely with the apostophe on the grounds that so few people over here can use it correctly. What a stupid idea!
    Sadly, that's also the case for a lot of people in the UK too. Teachers and native speakers who know how to use them correctly should continue to stress and teach the difference.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  7. #67
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    My dad was a professor at a major American university. One day about 45 years ago he showed me a one-page paper a student had submitted. It was basically illiterate. He lamented that he had to give the paper an A because as far as he could determine, all the facts and interpretations in it were correct.

    I noticed as the Web took off that the writing improved rapidly. People who had hardly written anything after high school were now writing every day. Clumsy writing was often called out, embarrassing the writer. The phenomenon has continued. Today it's much rarer to see really bad writing on internet forums and in news comments and the like.

    People still make plenty of errors but the overall level of writing is far better.
    I am not a teacher.

  8. #68
    probus's Avatar
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    As Piscean has insightfully pointed out, it is only relatively recently that most people have needed more than basic literacy and numeracy. In say 1940, for example, most girls became homemakers after leaving school, and many boys became tradesmen or labourers. Neither sex needed more than the ability to read a newspaper and do simple arithmetic.

  9. #69
    probus's Avatar
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    Re: I put the cooker on the gas and took it off gas after it blew vissle.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tarheel View Post
    I agree. And it's sad. Frankly, I blame the schools. They don't put enough emphasis on the basics. Too many people make mistakes they shouldn't make. They graduate from college not knowing basic things like how to make plurals. They don't know how to spell correctly.
    I suspect the root cause goes even deeper than that. American schools are bad partly because of the American people's unwillingness to pay taxes. Because of that, there is not enough money to pay teachers a living wage. Those dedicated souls who insist on being teachers regardless wind up dipping into their own pockets for basic supplies like pencils, and living in poverty themselves.

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