We Explain: How to Use There, They’re and there

Good and correct grammar is an extremely crucial aspect of good communication skills. Good grammar makes a good first impression and can either make or break a conversation.

For example, if you have gone for a job interview, the corporate world, no matter your mother tongue, expects you to speak and write correct grammar. Based on your communication skills, the employer will further decide whether they want to take you in for the job or not.

If you are a student and have to write essays, you might be someone who has brilliant content, but you will have a disadvantage with bad grammar. Usually, except for language papers, your marks may not be affected due to incorrect grammar but you sure will leave a bad impression on your teacher or professor. Some teachers even get distracted with the bad grammar and thus, this may result in your content being ignored completely.

Leaving the professional world aside, incorrect grammar is a turn off for so many people in the day to day life and as mentioned earlier can also reflect what your personality is like. Everyone likes to interact with well-spoken people and you should work on yourself if you want to be one so.

However, a common mistake that most people make, no matter their qualifications is with the usage of ‘their, they’re, and there’. These words are commonly confused and misinterpreted, especially because their pronunciations are the same and the subtle spelling differences do not stop people from getting confused either. When one is speaking the mistake isn’t noticeable because of the similar pronunciations but the trouble begins when writing.

To start, let us first look at what the three words mean.

  • Their: ‘belongs to them’ or ‘belongs to a group of people’
  • They’re: a diminution of ‘they are/ they were’ 
  • There: ‘at that place’, it is the opposite of ‘here’

How To Use ‘Their’

‘Their’ is a possessive pronoun. It is the possessive form of ‘they’. It signifies something belonging to a group of people, things, or animals.

Examples (incorrect vs correct):

Incorrect: It is there/they’re house.

Correct: It is their house

Incorrect: The land is there/they’re property.

Correct: The land is their property.

Incorrect: You should not trespass on there/they’re property.

Correct: You should not trespass on their property.

Incorrect: The trees are shedding there/they’re leaves.

Correct: The trees are shedding their leaves.

How To Use ‘They’re’

When an apostrophe is used as ‘s, it denotes possessive. Otherwise, apostrophes usually denote contractions.

Examples of some commonly used contractions:

  • Can’t = cannot 
  • Wouldn’t = would not
  • I’ve = I have
  • Don’t = do not
  • That’s = that is
  • Isn’t = is not 

Just like the above-mentioned examples, ‘they’re’ is a contraction for ‘they are’ which can be used both for living and non-living objects.

  • Using ‘they’re’ for living objects
  • They’re (they are) going out for a walk.
  • If they’re (they are) not willing to take part in the competition, let them be.
  • Using ‘they’re’ for non-living objects
  • They’re (they are) a good pair of shoes.
  • You can buy those books, they’re (they are) quite good.

Examples (incorrect vs correct):

Incorrect: There/There are going home.

Correct: They’re (they are) going home.

Incorrect: Their/There are the cutest kittens.

Correct: They’re (they are) the cutest kittens.

Incorrect: Leave them alone if their/there showing attitude.

Correct: Leave them alone if they’re (they are) showing attitude.

Incorrect: Apply to all of them, there/there are all good colleges.

Correct: Apply to all of them, they’re (they are) all good colleges.

How To Use ‘There’

‘There’ basically means a location or direction (can be abstract too) where something is kept or located. The use of ‘there’ in comparison to ‘their and they’re’ is simpler, yet people still tend to confuse themselves.

Examples:

Incorrect: I have kept the bottle their/they’re.

Correct: I have kept the bottle there.

Incorrect: We will reach their/they’re soon.

Correct: We will reach there soon.

Incorrect: Their/they’re you go, now the wound will heal itself.

Correct: There you go, now the wound will heal itself.

Incorrect: Their/they’re is a new restaurant in town.

Correct: There is a new restaurant in town.

Incorrect: Just keep my books their/they’re, I’ll fetch them when I get back.

Correct: Just keep my books there, I’ll fetch them when I get back.

Incorrect: Is their/they’re a problem?

Correct: Is there a problem?

How To Improve Your Grammatical Skills

Now, that you know the difference between ‘their, they’re and there’ and where to use them, life might become a little simpler for you. However, practice makes man perfect and if you do not practice as much you will forget what you learned overnight. Hence, below are some tips on how you can improve your grammar skills.

  • Read: Reading is extremely crucial when you want to improve your grammatical skills. Reading will not only improve your grammar but will also help you in increasing your vocabulary.
  • Subtitles: If you are a movie buff and prefer watching movies over ready, start watching your favorite films with the subtitles on. Do this even if you understand their accents without difficulty. This will increase your reading skills, vocabulary, grammar, communication skills, and concentration.
  • Read Lyrics: If you love listening to songs, a tip is to read the lyrics of the songs while listening to them.
  • Spoken English Classes: There are several spoken English classes, both online and offline. You can enroll yourself in any spoken English classes, like that of Spokenmate courses. Spokenmate provides both online and offline courses with the best teachers and it comes at a reasonable rate.
  • Write: Some mistakes cannot be detected when you are speaking and can only be detected when you are writing. If you do not practice writing on your own, no course or tips can help increase your grammatical skills. Always remember that practice makes man perfect and if you want to flourish and be close to perfect, you will need to practice as much as possible.

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