Prepositions of Place: In, on, at
Prepositions of place are used to refer to a place where something or someone is located. They usually come before a noun. They are specifically used to describe a place. There are three basic prepositions of place, however they can be used to discuss an almost endless number of places:
- at for a POINT
- in for an ENCLOSED SPACE
- on for a SURFACE
If something is contained inside a box or a wide flat area, we use ‘in’:
In the newspaper
In a cup
In a bottle
In a book
In a field
In my stomach
In a house
In a drawer
In a bag
In a car
In a sea
In a lake
In the fridge
In the living room
In the kitchen
In the garden
In the box
In the microwave
If something is on a line or a horizontal or vertical surface, we use ‘on’:
On the table
On the wall
On the floor
On the window
On the face
On the plate
On the page
On the sofa
On the chair
On the bag
On the river
On the bottle
On the bike
On his/her foot
On the desk
On the fridge
On the laptop
On the curtain
On the blanket
On the box
If something is at a point, (it could be a building) we use ‘at’:
At the airport
At the door
At the cinema
At the bus station
At the train station
At the bottom
At the top
At the front
At the top of page
At the corner
At the end of the road
At the door
At the crossroads
At the front desk
At the back
At the shop
At the market
Here’s a list of other prepositions of place with some examples:
|above||higher than something||The clock hanged above the T.V|
|across||from one side to the other side||
|after||one follows the other||The father ran after his kids|
|against||directed towards sth.||The snake moved against the door.|
|along||in a line; from one point to another||They’re walking along the beach.|
|among||in a group||He likes being among people.|
|around||in a circular way||We’re sitting around the heater.|
|behind||at the back of||The cinema is behind the supermarket.|
|below||lower than sth.||Mineral are below surface level|
|beside||next to||The police station is beside the bus stop.|
|between||sth./sb. is on each side||The chair is between the desk and the sofa.|
|by||near||He lives in the house by the sea.|
|close to||near||Our house is close to the supermarket.|
|down||from high to low||They came down the hill.|
|from||the place where it starts||I’m from Japan.|
|in front of||the part that is in the direction it faces||The T.V is in front of the sofa.|
|inside||opposite of outside||Stay inside the car.|
|into||entering sth.||You should go into the tunnel.|
|near||close to||The fire station is near the supermarket.|
|next to||beside||Our house is next to the bank.|
|off||away from sth.||The dog jumped off the roof.|
|onto||moving to a place||The dog jumped onto the roof.|
|opposite||on the other side||Our house is opposite the cinema.|
|out of||leaving sth.||The dog jumped out of the window.|
|outside||opposite of inside||I’ll wait outside.|
|over||above sth./sb.||The dog jumped over the wall.|
|past||going near sth./sb.||I went past the post office.|
|round||in a circle||We’re sitting round the speakers.|
|through||going from one point to the other point||You shouldn’t walk through the jungle.|
|towards||in the direction of sth.||We ran towards the pool.|
|under||below sth.||The pen is under the table.|
|up||from low to high||He climbed up the mountain.|
Practice: Write Down The Correct Preposition.
- Sign your name _______ the dotted line.
A- After b- behind c- on
- When we flew _______ the clouds, we could see the earth’s surface.
A- over b- in c- below
- Can I sit _______ you at the movie theatre?
A- Around b- beside c- inside
- The kids are playing _______ the backyard.
A- at b- on c- in
- Your glasses are right _______ you.
A- in front of b- on top of c-in behind
- You can pick up your keys _______ the front desk.
A- in b- at c- over
- Let’s meet _______ the front door.
A- in b- at c-below
- There’s a helicopter hovering _______ our house.
A- above b- on c- under
- Didn’t you park your car _______ mine?
A- on top of b- at c- behind
- Please stay _______ the police caution tape.
A- behind b-above c- over
- There are two students ________ the class.
A- next b- in c-on
- The oranges are not in the basket. They are _______ the table.
A- in b- between c- on
- My pencil is __________ the books and the notebooks.
A- between b- in c- on
- The red car is ________ of the house.
A- behind b- in front c- next to
- There isn’t anything __________ my pocket.
A- between b- next to c- in
- Some student are waiting in _______ the classroom.
A- next to b- front of c- between
- Our house is ________ to the supermarket.
A- in b- on C- next
- Oh my God! I saw a mouse __________ the sofa.
A- behind b- in c-next
- There is a big supermarket _______ the park.
A- on b- near c- in front
20. The children are playing _______ the garden.
A- on b- between c- in