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aCtivity: "Grammar on television" · skill: Commonly Confused Words

accept vs. except

The words accept and except are often confused and misused. One way to figure which word you need is to determine whether your sentence calls for (1) a verb or (2) a preposition or conjunction. If a verb is needed, most of the time the word you want is accept. It means to take or receive something offered, or to agree/consent to, or to consider as true/believe in. Examples: Jim accepted the award for Employee of the Month. The community accepted the proposal to build new stores and restaurants on Main Street. Mr. Brownlow does not accept that ghosts exist. If a preposition or conjunction is needed, you should use except. It means but, leaving out, or excluding/omitting. Examples: Jason loves every ice cream flavor except vanilla. Except for Susan, everyone is here. Natalie would have arrived earlier, except her flight was delayed.

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Want a supersimple tip to help you remember the difference between accept and except? Remember that the prefix ex- means out. So if you are talking about leaving something out, use except! Directions: Circle the correct boldface word in each sentence below.

1. Sarah loves all music accept/except for heavy metal and country. 2. "Check out this video of Selena Gomez accepting/excepting her five Teen Choice awards," said Morgan. 3. Mr. Flynn was confident that Ethan would accept/except the challenge. 4. My sister accepted/excepted Devin's gift with a big smile. 5. The Web site would not accept/except Katelyn's password. 6. It was hard for Alex to accept/except the fact that Mark was moving.

Directions: Write a form of accept or except on each blank in the paragraph below.

I had just _________________ my first community-service assignment: working at an animal shelter. When I walked in on my first day, all of the dogs barked at me-- _________________ one. That dog sat quietly, staring straight into my eyes. She was all white, _________________ for a brown patch around her left eye. I knelt in front of her and _________________ the paw that she offered me. Her name was Diva, and we quickly formed a bond. In fact, I would have adopted Diva that very day, _________________ of course I had to get my parents' permission. I must admit, it would have been hard for me to _________________ "no" as an answer. Fortunately, I didn't have to! My parents came to meet Diva and they fell in love with her too. Diva is now a treasured part of our family.

sCholastiC sCOPE activity · october 10, 2011


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