There, Their, and They’re

Help! What’s the Difference Between There, Their, and They’re?

When proofreading, three of the most commonly misused words I see are there, their, and they’re. I know it’s confusing! They look similar and sound similar, but they are used for very different things. Don’t let them fool you! Keep reading to learn how to correctly use the words there, their, and they’re.

There:

The word there is defined as: in or at that place. Think of it as a place. One example would be:

The ball is over there.

Or:

Why are you way over there?

This is how I tell my kids to remember it: The word here is inside the word there. Like this

Here or there?

Their:

The word their is defined as: of or relating to them or themselves especially as possessors. Think of it as possessive people. One example would be:

It’s their day to mow the lawn.

Or:

That is their house.

They’re:

They’re is the contraction of the words they are. The only time you get to use it is if you use it in place of they are. For example:

They’re headed up to the mountains today. (They are headed up to the mountains today.)

Or:

They’re my friends. (They are my friends.)

Ok, let’s try a few and see if you can figure out the correct word to use.

  1. Where is __________ car parked?
  2. __________ so friendly!
  3. What is that way over __________?
  4. Is that __________ school?
  5. I saw you when you were standing over __________.
  6. Where are they from? __________ from California.
  7. Why is that truck parked right __________?
  8. You’re right, __________ so funny!
  9. Why do you want __________ phone number?
  10. __________ in that building over __________ because __________ dad works __________.

Okay, how’d you do?

  1. their
  2. They’re
  3. there
  4. their
  5. there
  6. They’re
  7. there
  8. they’re
  9. their
  10. They’re, there, their, there

Whew! You made it! Congratulations! You are now a there, their, and they’re expert!

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