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Hello, everybody. No episódio de hoje, falamos sobre como usar de maneira natural palavras como them.
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So today we’re gonna have some really good practice. What’s it about, you ask? I’m gonna tell you in a minute, but first let me say this: it’s about something I’ve touched upon a few times before on this blog but I don’t think I’ve ever dedicated an entire post or podcast to it. Feel free to prove me wrong!
So here’s what I’m talking about – listen to this: “My brother Timmy hid the birthday candles, and we need the candles right now!” Listen to this part again: “My brother Timmy hid the birthday candles”. For those of you who don’t remember or don’t know, “hid” is the past of “hide”. So little Timmy hid the candles, and we need the candles. Is that starting to sound a little repetitive? Yep, that’s because I keep repeating candles, the candles, he hid the candles and we need the candles.
Now, this little grammar topic, so to speak, is the typical example of English subject covered sometimes in basic English classes. It comes up on lesson 7 or 8, you hear the teacher explain it, you do exercises, check! Done. And the reality is, I come across a shockingly low number of students who actually have words like them, her, his* as part of their natural speech and use them correctly. That’s what this episode is about. Instead of saying “My brother hid the birthday candles and we need the candles”, have a listen and get more familiar with the natural way of saying this: My brother hid the birthday candles and we need them. THEM is an object pronoun and it’s the one I’m gonna focus on. What are the other object pronouns? Me, you, her, him, it and us. So just notice how we say THEM. T-H-E-M, them. The TH here sounds like the TH in THIS or THAT. Them.
What could be better that lots of examples that make sense and are easy to understand? So here we go: “I thought I had lost my keys, but I just found my keys”. Yeah, let’s try that again: I thought I’d lost my keys but I just found THEM. Why say “my keys” twice? We don’t do that in Portuguese. We have a word just for that in English: them. I thought I’d lost my keys but I just found them. So you know I’m talking about my keys. You can ask me all these questions about my keys – about THEM! You could ask “Where did you find them? Where do you keep them? Why do you need them now?” And what is THEM replacing in those questions? Your keys!
I talked to my friends this morning and then I met up with my friends in the afternoon. Geez… that’s repetitive. I talked to my friends this morning and then I met up with them in the afternoon. I think you’re getting the hang of this, aren’t you? Let me know. So here we go. I talked to my friends this morning and then when did I meet up with them? In the afternoon. When did I see them? This afternoon. I learned how to make brownies by watching a video last week, and I finally made them today. I made the brownies, I made them. When did I make them? Today. How did I learn about them? I watched a video. I needed a pair of gloves to go out last night. I found them in my top drawer. I have two computers and I use them every day. My favorite band when I was a teenager was Duran Duran but I never saw them live. I love walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds and I eat them every week. There are lots of people in this coffee shop right now and most of them are doing work on a computer.
Can you clearly understand what the word THEM is replacing in each one of those examples? Let me know in the comments, as always, and also leave your own examples. Talk to you next time!
NOTA: *Cometi um erro aí na quarta linha do quarto parágrafo – saiu his em vez de him. His é pronome possessivo (dele ou seu/sua, terceira pessoa do singular). O que eu queria dizer é HIM; “ele” como pronome objeto.
prove me wrong = mostrar que estou errada
you’re getting the hang of this = você está pegando o jeito
drawer = gaveta
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