Revising apostrophes for contraction

Home learning focus

To revise using apostrophes to contract (combine) words and use them in your writing.

This lesson includes:

  • one video to help you revise apostrophes for contraction

  • one video about the inspirational scientist Marie Curie

  • three activities


You have learnt about using apostrophes for contraction in a previous lesson. Today, you’re going to revisit this important skill.

If you missed the previous lesson, you can take a look at it here.

Watch this short clip to remind yourself how to use apostrophes for contraction.

Find out about apostrophes for contractions.

Remember: To contract two words means to make them smaller and easier to say or write. To do this, we combine them together.

For example: She will = she'll

It's important to place the apostrophe correctly because it shows where you omitted (left out) some letters when you joined the two words 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'.

Don't forget!

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

For example: Will + not = won't


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

Activity 1

See how much you remember from the video by completing this quick quiz.

Can you get all five questions correct?

Activity 2

Watch this video about the scientist Marie Curie.

Then complete the activity below.

Find out more about the scientist Marie Curie.

Read the paragraph below.

There are five pairs of words that could be contracted but aren’t.

Find them and write the contracted form of the word down on paper.

For example: did not = didn’t

Top tip!

Check your spelling and punctuation carefully. The apostrophe should go where the letters have been taken out.

Many years ago, people thought that women could not be scientists. Luckily, this is not the case today! In Poland, where Marie Curie lived, girls were not allowed to go to university so her parents sent her in secret. She later married a French scientist called Pierre. They worked together looking at elements and discovered radium and radioactivity. She would later receive two Nobel prizes: one with her husband in physics and one in chemistry on her own. Marie was the first woman to win a Nobel prize. Unfortunately, Marie Curie got ill and died but she will be remembered for being an inspiration, showing girls they can do anything.

Activity 3

Now write your own paragraph about someone who inspires you. For example, a teacher, a parent, or a brother or sister.

Aim to write eight sentences and use at least five contractions.

When you’ve finished, circle all your contractions. How many did you use?

Top tip!

Try changing these words into contractions and using them in your writing.

should have, did not, could not, cannot, I will, they are

Where next?

In this lesson you have revised how to use apostrophes in contractions.

There are other useful articles on Bitesize to help you improve your punctuation.

There's more to learn

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