Singular Nouns And Plural Nouns

In these lessons, we will learn singular countable nouns and the different spellings for plural nouns.

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Related Pages
Countable And Uncountable Nouns
Collective Nouns
Gender Nouns
More Lessons On English Grammar

The following table gives some rules for forming plural nouns. There are some exceptions. Scroll down the page for examples and explanations.

Rules for Plural Nouns

Singular Countable Nouns

When we are talking about just one person, animal, place or thing, we use a singular countable noun.

Here are some countable nouns that are in the singular.

cook comb bird map
stadium graph train ladder

Plural Nouns

When we are talking about two or more people, animals, places or things, we have to make the countable nouns plural.

Plural nouns usually end in s.

Singular Plural
lamp lamps
worker workers
hawk hawks
place places
rope ropes

When the last letters of singular nouns are ch, sh, s or x, you usually add es to form the plural. Some exceptions are stomach and monarch where you add s instead of es. This is because the ch in these words sounds like k.

Singular Plural
arch arches
branch branches
brush brushes
flash flashes
bus buses
address addresses
box boxes
fox foxes
stomach stomachs
monarch monarchs

In the case of nouns that end in o, some nouns we need to add s to form the plural whereas others we need to add es to form the plural.

Singular Plural
kangaroo kangaroos
video videos
zoo zoos
tomato tomatoes
tornado tornadoes
hero heroes
potato potatoes

With some nouns that end in y, we form the plural by changing the y to i, and adding es.

Singular Plural
lady ladies
baby babies
lily lilies
trophy trophies
jelly jellies
story stories

However, if there is a vowel before the y (ay, ey, oy, we just add s to form the plural.

Singular Plural
bay bays
way ways
key keys
jersey jerseys
toy toys
boy boys

With some nouns ending in f, the plural ending is ves. We change f to v, and add es.

Singular Plural
leaf leaves
wolf wolves
calf calves
loaf loaves
thief thieves

With some nouns that end in f or fe, we just add s to form the plural.

Singular Plural
chief chiefs
cliff cliffs
roof roofs
giraffe giraffes

With some nouns ending in fe, we change f to v, and add s.

Singular Plural
knife knives
wife wives
life lives

The plural of some nouns is the same as the singular.

Singular Plural
deer deer
fish fish
salmon salmon
reindeer reindeer
sheep sheep

Some nouns are always plural.

pajamas jeans binoculars goggles
spectacles scissors trousers shorts
pliers braces

The plural form of some nouns is different from the singular form.

Singular Plural
goose geese
foot feet
ox oxen
child children
woman women
man men
mouse mice


Learn English - Singular Nouns and Plural Nouns

This tutorial describes the difference between singular and plural nouns, as well as other number class related issues.

Forming Plural Nouns with s

This video explains the difference between singular nouns and plural nouns. It shows that when we have 2 or more we use the plural form. It also explains that the plural form is made by adding -s to the noun base.

Forming Plural Nouns with es

When a singular noun ends in the letter s, ss, x, ch, or sh, it will usually become a plural by adding an -es.

Forming Plural Nouns

When the singular noun ends with a y, the plural noun is formed by removing the y and adding an -ies

Plural Irregular Noun

This video shows how some popular irregular nouns change in the plural form. These nouns do not add the “s” at the end of the word.

For eg. man becomes men, woman becomes women, child becomes children, person becomes people, foot becomes feet, tooth becomes teeth, mouse becomes mice, goose becomes geese. Some nouns do not change when they become the plural form, for example, fish and deer.

Some examples of Collective Nouns

A school of fish, a swarm of bees, an audience of listeners, a bouquet of flowers, a bunch of bananas, a forest of trees, a galaxy of stars, a pride of lions, a litter of kittens, a crew of sailors, a range of mountains.

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