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Skills 9 10 noun clauses
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Skills 9 10 noun clauses

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  • 1. UCI Extension Paper-Based TOEFL Workshop Noun Clauses Structure and Written Expression Skills 9-10 Longman Preparation Course for the TOEFL Test Tutorial prepared by Marla Yoshida 1
  • 2. What is a noun clause? • Review: Nouns can be used in many ways. For example, a noun can be the subject of a clause… Some books are very expensive. • …the object of a clause… I bought some books at the bookstore. • …or an object of a preposition… There are lots of pictures in those books. • Sometimes we also use a clause in the same way that we use a noun. A clause can be a subject, an object, or an object of a preposition. We call this kind of clause a noun clause. 2
  • 3. Compare nouns and noun clauses… • The subject is a noun: The food was delicious. • The subject is a clause: [What they ate for dinner] was delicious. • The object is a noun: Everyone liked the food. • The object is a clause: Everyone liked [what they ate for dinner.] • The object of a preposition is a noun: They told us about the food. • The object of a preposition is a clause: They told us about [what they ate for dinner.] 3
  • 4. Using noun clauses • A noun clause begins with one of these words: that the fact that whether if what when where why how whatever whoever whenever • Many of these can also be question words. However, the word order in noun clauses is different from question word order: What are you doing? (Question order: verb before subject) I don’t know [what you are doing]. (Noun clause order: verb after subject.) • The word order in a noun clause is like the word order in a statement: Subject + Verb + Object 4
  • 5. Noun clauses with that • That is often used in reported speech, when we’re telling what someone said, thought, knew, wrote, etc. The teacher said [that we should do our homework]. Did you know [that Sacramento is the capital of California]? I think [that classical music is boring]. • We can also omit that in this kind of sentence. The teacher said [we should do our homework]. Did you know [Sacramento is the capital of California]? I think [classical music is boring]. 5
  • 6. Noun clauses with that or the fact that That or the fact that can also be used in sentences like these: You forgot my name. It makes me sad.  [That you forgot my name] makes me sad. Gold is expensive. It’s a well-known fact.  [That gold is expensive] is a well-known fact. The bus was late. That’s not unusual.  [The fact that the bus was late] is not unusual. I had promised to go to Starbucks with you. I forgot it.  I forgot [that I had promised to go to Starbucks with you]. The doctor made a mistake. He regrets it.  The doctor regrets [the fact that he made a mistake]. 6
  • 7. Noun clauses with whether or if Whether and if can be used in noun clauses that come from yes/no questions: Is today Ellen’s birthday? I don’t know.  I don’t know [whether today is Ellen’s birthday].  I don’t know [if today is Ellen’s birthday]. Is there a Starbucks next to the bank? I can’t remember.  I can’t remember [whether there’s a Starbucks next to the bank].  I can’t remember [if there’s a Starbucks next to the bank]. Can he finish in time? That’s not my problem.  [Whether (or not) he can finish in time] is not my problem.  (If doesn’t work well when the clause is a subject.) 7
  • 8. Noun clauses with question words Question words like who, where, or what can also introduce noun clauses. The word order is Subject + Verb + Object Where was Leonardo Da Vinci born? I’ve forgotten.  I’ve forgotten [where Leonardo Da Vinci was born]. Why do people like watching TV? We can’t understand it.  We can’t understand [why people like watching TV]. How can heavy airplanes stay in the air? It puzzles me.  [How heavy airplanes can stay in the air] puzzles me. What do you want? Anything is fine with me.  [Whatever you want] is fine with me. Who will come to the party? I’m thinking about it.  I’m thinking about [who will come to the party]. 8
  • 9. More about noun clause connectors As you know, a noun clause can play various roles in a sentence: • Sometimes the noun clause is the subject of the sentence: [How heavy airplanes can stay in the air] puzzles me. • Sometimes the noun clause is the object of the sentence: I’ve forgotten [where Leonardo Da Vinci was born]. • Sometimes the noun clause is the object of a preposition: I’m thinking about [who will come to the party]. 9
  • 10. More about noun clause connectors • We can also think about what role the noun clause connector plays in the noun clause. • Sometimes the connector is the subject of the noun clause: I’m thinking about [who will come to the party]. • Sometimes the connector is the object of the noun clause: I’ve already forgotten [what you told me]. • Sometimes the connector isn’t any of these things: We’ve forgotten [where Leonardo Da Vinci was born]. I don’t know [why I should study this]. Do you know [whether the post office is open]? 10
  • 11. More about noun clause connectors • When a question word is the subject of a noun clause, it always needs a singular verb. I don’t know [who is knocking at the door]. [Whoever knows the answer] should tell us right away. Please tell me [what has happened]. • Of course, sometimes you can’t tell if the verb is singular or plural. Here the verb is the same in singular or plural. I don’t know [who broke the window]. [Whoever broke the window] should apologize. We’re all wondering [what might happen]. 11
  • 12. Summary In this section, you have learned about these things: • A noun clause is a clause that can be used in the same way as a noun. • A noun clause begins with a noun clause connector. • A noun clause has the same word order as a statement (not a question). ---------- 12