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  1. Senior Member
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    #1

    articles

    Hi there,
    I just read something about articles: a, an, the in Practical English Usage written by Michael Swan. He said sometimes we talked about things in general by using 'the' with a singular countable noun.

    For example,
    Schools should pay less attention to examination success and more attention to the child.
    Question
    Any difference if I replace 'the child' with 'children'. Some grammar books tell us that when we use 'the', it refers to particular thing or the thing we mentioned before. How come 'the' can refer to something general?

    Thanks
    pete

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    #2

    Re: articles

    Schools should pay less attention to examination success and more attention to the child.

    means: pay less attention to the concept of success and more attention to the needs of the individual child.

    So that is why the "the" is seen before child.

    Yes, you could say "children."

    But the sentence loses impact.




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