Standard English
Do you know when to use standard English?

Standard English

This KS2 English quiz tests you on standard English. The way we talk and write involves formal and informal English. We don't treat everyone the same way. You wouldn't talk to a baby in the same way you talk to your best friend. And you wouldn't talk to your best friend in the same way you talk to your teacher. Standard English is the correct English we use when we want to make a good impression. Standard English is more formal when written than when spoken.

Sometimes when listening to English being spoken, it's difficult to tell what each word is, especially when the speaker is talking fast. This can lead to confusion when it comes to writing down what they have said. With formal English, it's important to make sure that every word you write is the correct one.

This quiz tests how well you know standard English as we use it in speaking.

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  1. Choose the correct sentence.
    It were freezin' in school yesterday.
    Did someone forget to put the radiators on?
  2. Choose the correct sentence.
    I ain't had no breakfast.
    'I ain't had no breakfast' is an example of a double negative (ain't and no). You only need one negative to make a sentence negative. 'Ain't' is also a dialect word, rather than standard English.
  3. Choose the correct sentence.
    He didn't tell me nothing about the party.
    'He didn't tell me anything' and 'he told me nothing' both have the same meaning.
  4. Choose the correct sentence.
    I could of learned my six times table, but I couldn't be bothered.
    It's a common mistake to write 'of' instead of 'have'.
  5. Choose the correct sentence.
    That's the team what won the cup.
    Even though 'wot' isn't an actual word, you still might see it written in a story, as spoken by a character.
  6. Choose the correct sentence.
    I'll take one of them jumpers.
    You will find that stories use informal language when a character is speaking.
  7. Choose the correct sentence.
    She don't have nothing.
    If you break down the sentence, it says 'she do not have nothing' which actually means she has something!
  8. Choose the correct sentence.
    He should of been here today.
    'Should've' sounds like 'should of', but as you'll know, it is actually the contraction of 'should have'. Remember the 'have' in 'could've' and 'would've', too.
  9. Choose the correct sentence.
    Ask Mary if you can lend her paintbrushes.
    Mary can lend her paintbrushes to someone else - someone else borrows Mary's paintbrushes.
  10. Choose the correct sentence.
    He came round our house coz he were hungry.
    This sentence is an example of dialect - it would be perfect for story dialogue, if that's how you wanted your character to speak, but it is not suitable for formal writing.

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