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Unit 8 - Lesson 37 - Counting Uncountable Nouns

Remember It

Questions

How much ....? = uncountable nouns
For example: How much coffee do you drink?
How many ....? = countable nouns
For example: How many cups of coffee do you drink?

Learn

How do you count uncountable nouns? You can't, but you can measure them. You have to use ‘counters’:-

Noun

sugar
jewellery
cheese
cheese
cheese
bottle
furniture

furniture
bag bag
bag bag

Uncountable

Sugar Jewellery Cheese Wine Furniture Money
Uncountable Question How much sugar is there? How much jewellery is there? How much cheese is there? How much wine is there? How much furniture is there? How much money is there?
Answer There's a lot of sugar. There's some jewellery. There's a lot of cheese. There's some wine. There's some furniture. There's a lot of money.
Add a word bowl piece round bottle piece bag

Make it Countable

A bowl of sugar. A piece of jewellery. A round of cheese. A bottle of wine. A piece of furniture. A bag of money.

Countable Question

How many bowls of sugar are there? How many pieces of jewellery are there? How many rounds of cheese are there? How many bottles of wine are there? How many pieces of furniture are there? How many bags of money are there?

Answer

There's one bowl of sugar. There are two pieces of jewellery. There are three rounds of cheese. There's only one bottle of wine. Sad There are two pieces of furniture. There are four bags of money.
Other words you can add to make uncountable nouns countable:-
You can put something into a container to count it, but the thing you're counting doesn't take the plural form. The container takes the plural form:-
bag A bag of flour.

bag of flour

barrel Two barrels of beer. barrel
bottle Three bottles of wine. happy bottle
bowl Four bowls of sugar. bowl
box Five boxes of cereal. cereal
bucket Six buckets of water. bucket
can Seven cans of Coke. can
carton Eight cartons of milk. carton
cup Nine cups of coffee. cup
glass Ten glasses of water. glass
jar Eleven jars of honey. jar
packet A dozen packets of butter. packet
a saucepan Thirteen pans of rice. pan
tank Fifteen tanks of petrol. tank
tin Sixteen tins of custard. tin
tub Seventeen tubs of margarine. tub
tube Eighteen tubes of toothpaste. tube

 

You can measure something to count it, but it still doesn't take the plural form. The measurement takes the plural form:- For example:-  
litre 1 and a half litres of milk. jug
pint Two pints of beer. pint
pound / ounce / kilo etc... Two pounds / ounces / kilos of butter. scales

 

You can measure uncountable nouns in other ways, using shapes or portions. Again the measurement takes the plural form.    
ball Ten balls of wool. ball
bar Three bars of soap. bar
pinch Two pinches of salt. pinch
slice Five slices of cake. slice
spoon Fourteen spoonfuls of sugar. spoon
square Nine squares of chocolate. squares of chocolate

What about money? Money is uncountable, but you can count how much money or cash you have. Accountants do it all the time.

So, how much money have you got?

   

First you can put your money into piles.

How many piles of money have you got?

A pile of money ball

You can put money into bags.

How many bags of money have you got?

Two bags of money moneymoney

You can use different currencies.

How many English pounds have you got?

Two pounds

Two dollars

Two euros

£2

$2

€2

You can use different denominations.

How many pennies/cents have you got?

Two pennies

Two cents

2p

2c

 


More English Lessons

Next Lesson - Some, Any, A few, A little, Many, Much
Previous Lesson - Countable Nouns vs Uncountable Nouns

Test

Test what you have learnt - Match It

Practise Your English

Read this song.

Can you think of any more ways to describe uncountable nouns?

!Note - All posts are moderated and then corrected. One correction per person per lesson.
You can read more corrections On the OLD forum
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Week 37

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