Using apostrophes to combine words

Home learning focus

To learn how and when to use apostrophes to combine two words.

This lesson includes:

  • two videos to show you how to use apostrophes to combine two words

  • four activities


Sometimes we contract words to make them easier to say or write. This means that we combine them together and make them smaller.

For example: She will = she'll

We use an apostrophe for contraction to show when we have done this.

Watch this short clip to learn how and when to use apostrophes for contraction.

Apostrophes for contraction show that you omitted (left out) some letters when you joined them together.

For example: You + are = you're

The apostrophe takes the place of the letters that have been removed. In the example above, that’s the letter a from 'are'.

Sometimes you need to rearrange the letters a bit when you combine them.

For example: Will + not = won't

Joining words together like this makes your writing easier to read and more friendly.

Watch this video to revise apostrophes for contraction.

Focus on the words that are highlighted in green.


You may need paper and a pen or pencil for some of these activities.

Activity 1

Check how well you understood the videos by completing this short activity.

You need to type the contracted (shortened) form of the words.

Activity 2

Now have a go at using contracted words in your own writing.

Write five sentences. Each sentence must include one of the following contraction words:

  • don't (do not)

  • won't (will not)

  • she'll (she will)

  • can't (can not)

  • he'll (he will)

For example: I don't want to go to bed!

Activity 3

Complete this Contractions activity sheet.

You need to read the two words and then write the contracted form.

Don’t forget to use an apostrophe to show where you have taken out any letters.

Either print out the activity sheet or write the contracted words on a piece of paper instead.

Top Tip!

If you need to, use the word bank at the bottom of the sheet to help.

Contractions activity sheet

Activity 4

Finally, have a go at this Apostrophes and Combining Words game.

Apostrophes and Combining Words game

Where next?

In this lesson you have learnt about using apostrophes in contractions.

There are other useful articles on Bitesize.

Click on the links below to keep learning.

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