All and Every

  1. All soccer players like winning.  vs. Every soccer players likes winning.
  2. All cows eat grass. v.s Every cow eats grass.
  3. All people are created equal. vs Every person is created equal.

Formula: All + Plural Noun + Plural Verb

e.g. All spiders have eight legs.

Formula: Every + Singular Noun + Singular Verb

e.g. Every spider has eight legs.

Common Usages:

  1. All my friends
  2. All the girls
  3. All those books
  4. All Malaysians enjoy eating.
  5. All the leaves have turned brown.

The Relative clauses.

  1. All you need is …
  2. All I said was, “You are the best”
  3. All we want is …


Problem words

Problem words for subject-verb agreement

  • With, together with, like, as well as do not add to the number. (Only and adds to the number.)
  1. The boy, with ten others in the bus, was late for school.
  2. The member of Parliament, together with eight officials, is touring Shah Alam.
  3. Salmah, like Alice, is tall for her age.
  4. Bryan, as well as his brother, has been invited to the party.
  • Each, every, everybody, anybody, nobody, one of the singular.
  1. Each child gets a present on Children’s Day.
  2. Everyone wants to eat a piece of cake for breakfast.
  3. Everybody has to finish his / her homework on time.
  4. Anybody above 21 is eligible for membership to the club.
  5. Nobody is perfect.
  6. One of the boys has taken my pencil.
  • None can be either singular or plural.
  1. I wanted to buy a good watch but none was available from that shop.
  2. None of the goals were saved by the goalkeeper.
  • All, half, means, a lot are either singular or plural, depending on the intended meanings.
  1. All is lost. (all here means everything)
  2. All are invited for the party. (all here refers to “People”)
  3. Half a share is better than none. (Half of the single unit)
  4. Half the papayas are spoilt in storage. (ten out of 20)

Rules for Agreement

Amount, distances and number can be taken as single units if used as subjects.

  1. Two is enough.
  2. Fifteen ringgit is what I have to pay.
  3. Sixteen kilometres is a long way to talk.


  1. Two watches have been stolen from her locker. (2 units)
  2. There are 16 kilometres more to cover. (16 units of distance)
  3. There are 365 days in a year. (365 units).