One of my absolute pet hates is the incorrect use of the words their, they’re and there. I know from the groups set up on Facebook that I’m not alone in getting frustrated when the wrong word is chosen; although I should also acknowledge that there are clearly more important things in the world to be worrying about!

Anyway, for any of you that are still struggling with knowing which word to choose, I hope this will help.

Firstly, they’re;┬áremember that the apostrophe reflects the fact that two words have been merged into one by dropping one of the letters, in this case the letter a has been dropped and if reinserted and the two words were separated this would read they are. Examples of the correct use of they’re include:

They’re going to the zoo = They are going to the zoo
They’re eating chocolate = They are eating chocolate
They’re ready for Christmas = They are ready for Christmas

Secondly, their; in its simplicity this version of the word deals with a group of people or things, owning something. It is used therefore to explain that an object or quality belongs. Examples of the correct use of their include:

The children rode on their bikes. In this case the bikes belong to the children
The elephants raised their trunks. In this case the trunks belong to the elephants
The girls wore their hair in ponytails. In this case the hair belongs to the girls.

And finally, there; this either relates to a place or is used when writing there are or there is;.
The children must sit over there.
The museum is up there.
There is a rainbow in the sky.

If you have ruled out their and they’re based on the rules explained above then it will always be there.

I hope this helps, but if you’re still not sure please feel free to ask for my help!

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