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The art of assigning articles a/an/the


Cloze exercise: fill in the X with a/an/the/nothing 

This image titled at X National Gallery of Art in X Washington, DC is titled
Jack-in-Pulpit Abstraction - No. 5, 1930 (more)

One of X most significant artists of X 20th century, Georgia O’Keeffe (1887-1986) was devoted to X creating imagery that expressed what she called “the wideness and wonder of the world as I live in it.” O’Keeffe’s images—instantly recognizable as her own —include abstractions, large-scale depictions of X flowers, leaves, rocks, shells, bones and X other natural forms, New York cityscapes and paintings of X unusual X shapes and X colors of  X architectural and landscape forms of northern New Mexico.

X Georgia O'Keeffe Museum preserves, presents, and advances X artistic legacy of  X Georgia O’Keeffe and of Modernism through X innovative public engagement, education, and X research.  -- Derived from https://web.archive.org/web/20191226135742/https://prints.okeeffemuseum.org/ 


College level cloze exercise https://writingcenter.gmu.edu/guides/definite-and-indefinite-articles
Rules of thumb, flow chart, examples https://www.germanna.edu/wp-content/uploads/tutoring/handouts/Use-of-Articles.pdf
Articles exercises from the OWL https://owl.purdue.edu/owl_exercises/grammar_exercises/articles/articles_exercise_1.html
more examples https://www.butte.edu/departments/cas/tipsheets/grammar/articles.html

Usage and construction checklists

Transition phrase tips for the English Language Learner (ELL, ESL, EFL)
University of Minnesota's Twelve Common Errors: An Editing Checklist  (Print from Archive)
Notice which verbs in the use-with-"of" section differ from those in your language.

Strive to construct correctly punctuated sentences. With each noun, consider what you want to convey to the reader when you select "a," "the," or no article. (Practice here https://grosslearning.blogspot.com/2020/07/articles.html) Use prepositions and spelling typical in General American English. (TBD links) If you want to capitalize all Nouns, then you should be studying German instead of English.

Make sure that your tenses make sense in any language. When in doubt, try writing in the present tense. (TBD examples) Know your endings! The plural, possessive, and verb-agreement markers all use the ending /s/, realized as [s], [z], and [Iz]. The past tense ending likewise is realized as [t], [d], and [Id]. The more you say it, the more you'll hear it, the more chance you'll write it.

Avoid run-on sentences and sentence fragments. Know when to use infinitive verbs. Lists with parallel constructions will help your reader understand your point and give logical structure to your thoughts.  My grocery list has "apples, pears, and bananas"; the Queen's list has "apples, pears and bananas." You use more commas than the Queen does.

Use comma + which when the both clauses refer to the same item.
These two sentences mean different things. The second queen has more jewels!
The Queen's jewels, which are in England, are worth $5 billion dollars.
The Queen's jewels that are in England are worth $5 billion dollars.


by E. Groszek

You don't need to write "For example" or "For instance." For a five-paragraph essay, you can just jump in with the example that makes your point. 

Use the infinitive after a verb and nowhere else. Use "that" before an indirect quote.
The Bronx checklist:
The Owl

Enjoy reading these sample five-paragraph essays

I like four of the five essays listed in an archived version of hand-outs from
the Bronx Campus Student Success Center. They share a love of logic, structure, and whimsy that makes me want to re-read them.



Options for transition phrases other than "first," "secondly," and "In conclusion."

Do the DLAB - Defense Language Aptitude Battery

Morpho-phonemic analysis makes life fun. From what I see, there is plenty of that on the DLAB.

Breeze through the same/different stress part of the test by practicing beforehand. There is a kinetic way to find the stressed syllable in a word. Try playing the rubber band with these English words: https://youtu.be/BXs88kHdcNY?t=21 The next step is to try this with other languages, say compare the stressed syllable in vacation to that in vacacionesBuild your confidence with similar exercises until you can skip checking your answer!

Growing your roots (and prefixes and suffixes)

The National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition - NCELA produced this 5-page list of prefixes, roots, and suffixes (with examples) to open up 100,000+ words for you!  The link goes to a pdf that you can download or you can view these jpg images on this post.

Developed by Judith Wilde, PhD for Beta Group – Albuquerque, NM and Arlington, VA (rev 8/06). Reprinted by NCELA with permission. Multiple copies permitted for educational purposes and with this credit line.