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When to use apostrophes - Laura McClure


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TEDEd Animation

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It’s possessive. It’s often followed by S’s. And it’s sometimes tricky when it comes to its usage. It’s the apostrophe. Laura McClure gives a refresher on when to use apostrophes in writing.

Additional Resources for you to Explore

To learn more about this punctuation mark, start by reading the two Grammar Girl posts here and here.

To understand the difference between grammar “rules” and grammar “style” choices, you’ll want to look at a style guide or two. Below are the websites for several major English language style guides:

The Economist Style Guide
Chicago Manual of Style
Oxford University Press
Associated Press

Want to improve (or test) your knowledge about punctuation? Take the TED-Ed Lessons described below:

The Oxford comma:
If you read "Bob, a DJ and a clown" on a guest list, are three people coming to the party, or only one? That depends on whether you're for or against the Oxford comma. Watch this TED-Ed Lesson to explore both sides of the comma divide.

How to use a semicolon:
It may seem like the semicolon is struggling with an identity crisis. It looks like a comma crossed with a period. Maybe that’s why we toss these punctuation marks around like grammatical confetti; we’re confused about how to use them properly. Watch this TED-Ed Lesson to see best practices for the semi-confusing semicolon.

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Meet The Creators

  • Educator Laura McClure
  • Animator Henry Chung, Noel Wong
  • Artist Mark Storer
  • Composer Tom Jordan
  • Narrator Addison Anderson

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