When Polonius asks Hamlet what he’s reading, Hamlet responds,
Words, words, words.
Whether the subject is art, small engine maintenance, or criminal justice, all learning boils down to knowing what to call things.
When it comes to learning language, the student needs to know what to call various kinds of words.
The basic terminology for talking about words is to be found in the PARTS OF SPEECH.
A word is a part of speech when it is used in a sentence. Before that, a word is just a word.
How a word is used in a sentence (its function) is what determines what part of speech it is. For example, the word run can be used as more than one part of speech:
Sammy hit a home run. In this sentence, run is a noun.
You mustn’t run near the swimming pool. In this sentence, run is a verb.
When you have learned the descriptions and definitions of the EIGHT PARTS OF SPEECH, you’ll be ready to proceed to learning how to be a better speaker and writer.