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Uno de los retos cuando se está estudiando inglés es aprender las preposiciones como ya os comentamos en el artículo “The importance of prepositions”. Las preposiciones en inglés constituyen unos de los términos más difíciles de aprender, porque son muchas y algunas de ellas se utilizan de manera diferente a como las utilizamos en nuestro idioma materno, especialmente si las traducimos literalmente pueden provocar equívocos.

Las preposiciones se organizan en diferentes categorías y algunas de ellas como: prepositions for days and times, las preposiciones de tiempo en inglés ya las hemos visto en artículos anteriores.
Hoy os invitamos a conocer las preposiciones de lugar, para que podáis practicarlas tal y como lo hacéis en vuestro curso de inglés y en los seminarios que organizamos semanalmente en Callan School Barcelona.

As any student of English will rightly know, prepositions are some of the most difficult words to master. There are some different reasons for this. One is quite simple: there are so many prepositions in English. When you must memorize so many words, it naturally makes life harder. Another reason is that certain prepositions are used differently in different languages. This means that simply translating an expression word for word from one language to another often leads to mistakes. One example of this: in English, we say “to be in love with someone.” The expression that means the same in Spanish, “estar enamorado de alguien,” uses the preposition ‘of’ instead of ‘with.’ There are many other examples of this between English and other languages.

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One way to organize prepositions is by separating them into different categories. In the past, we have written about prepositions of time. Now we will discuss prepositions of place. We could fill several volumes if we looked at every single preposition related to place, so we will only look at a few major ones. The first is ‘at.’ ‘At’ is a word that is broadly used to answer questions like, “Where are you?” or “Where did that happen?” when we couldn’t use another preposition of place like ‘in’ or ‘on.’ Let’s see some examples:

  • I’ll be at the office tomorrow.
  • They are at the gym, so you can tell them when they get home.
  • It’s 10 o’clock! You should be at school!

 

As mentioned above, ‘in’ is another very common preposition of place. We generally use this word when we want to say that something is inside a space. For example, my wallet is in my pocket, the pie is in the oven, etc. However, it is not always the case that the thing or person we are talking about must be physically enclosed in a space. For example, we say:

  • Barcelona is in Spain.
  • Jane’s house is in the countryside.

 

‘On’ is another important preposition of place to know. It is used when we want to say that one thing is in physical contact with another and supported by it. For example:

  • The basketball is on the roof.
  • Hurry up, dinner is on the table!
  • His hat is on his head.

 

’To’ is another common preposition of place. It expresses movement that will end at a place that is mentioned in the sentence. For example:

  • Tom goes to work every day.
  • We are flying to Madrid tomorrow.
  • She goes to bed around midnight most days.

 

As we can see in each example above, there is movement that finishes at a specified place (work, Madrid, bed). There are countless other prepositions of place, too many to discuss here! But this is an excellent start, and you can practice what you’ve learned with the exercise!

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A. Edstrom
Callan Tea
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Harman, G. (2015) “Las preposiciones en inglés” Recursos gratuitos de inglés – Callan School of English.