Few is used with count nouns:
|a few cars||few cars|
|a few items||few items|
|a few ideas||few ideas|
|a few people||few people|
|a few men||few men|
(meaning a small number, It could of been ten people when fifty people expected)
|Q: How many cars are there?
A: There are just
|She’s sad because she has very
(This means she doesn’t have many friends.
Notice there is no article. “A few” means something different.)
(In this example and the one above, the situation is not good.)
Few people came to the party. Fifty people were expected. Only ten showed up. There were very few people there.
A few books are on the table.
Few books are on the table.
We had few problems with the computer. (sounds good.)
We had a few problems with the computer. (sounds very good.)
Little is used with non count nouns:
a little / little = a small amount
a little paint on his wife’s head.
(You can also use…
a little bit of)
a little bit of paint on his wife’s head.
a little snow on the road and on the ground.
He got very little sleep last night.
(Notice that “sleep” is a noun in this sentence. “A little sleep” is a small amount of sleep, and “little sleep” is not very much sleep or no sleep.)
Q: Did she find what she was looking for in the newspaper?
A: No. There was very
|a little time||little time|
|a little memory||little memory|
|a little money||little money|
|a little oil||little oil|
|a little pain||little pain|
|a little food||little food|
Remember: “a little” and “little” are used when describing amounts for noncount nouns.
Directions: Fill in the blank with “a few” or “a little.” (20 points)
Directions: Fill in the blank with “few” or “little.” Notice the meanings of these words are different from those in Part A. (20 pts)
Patty invited some friends over for dinner. She moved into her first apartment two months ago, so she decided to have some friends over to celebrate and show off her new place. She also started a new job not long ago. Some of the people that she invited over were from work.
Patty didn’t have all the
ingredients for the dinner that she planned,
so she made a list and then she went shopping at the local
She never used to go
grocery shopping when she lived at home with her parents,
but now she has to do everything for herself.
She bought fresh tomatoes, basil, lettuce, broccoli, green peppers, red peppers, some pasta, salad dressing, some olives, and several pounds of chicken. She also bought a few bottles of wine and some beer. For her guests who don’t drink alcohol, she bought some non-alcoholic drinks.
appetizer, she made
Bruschetta is an Italian
To make it, you start with
toasted pieces of French bread brushed with garlic and olive oil.
The bread is then topped with a slice of tomato, fresh
mozzarella cheese, and basil.
For the main course, Patty roasted some chicken and some potatoes.
She also made a pasta salad because some of her guests were
vegetarians and don’t eat any kind of animal meat.
There were 20 people at her party.
It was hard to plan and
prepare for such a large group,
but everyone had a nice time and loved the food.
Most of Patty’s guests brought her a house-warming gift, some wine, or some flowers.
One of her friends brought five apple pies, so after dinner they had the pie for dessert.
Patty’s party was a great success!
How much do you remember from the reading ? Fill in the blanks.
1: Patty invited some friends over for dinner.
2: She made a list before she went shopping.
3: She never used to go grocery shopping when she lived at home with her parents.
4: Patty bought a lot of food at the store.
5: She roasted a chicken and some potatoes.
6: Most of her guests brought her something when they arrived.
7: Everyone had a good time.