S, ES Endings

They make an appearance in many different nouns, including the word noun! Since this is our first episode, we’ll go through the process: first we show a rule, and then we explain the rule in detail using examples.


by Brendan Bense

April 10, 2019


Hello, and welcome to our very first episode on English plural endings! We’re starting you off easy with two of our favorite endings: S and ES! These are two of the simplest endings in English. They make an appearance in many different nouns, including the word noun! Since this is our first episode, we’ll go through the process: first we show a rule, and then we explain the rule in detail using examples. We go pretty slow, so if you feel you’ve got a grasp on it, feel free to move on to the next rule! Remember, with FactSumo, it’s all about going at your own pace. We want you to feel the confidence you need to succeed. Without further ado, let’s begin.

Add “-s” to most regular nouns to make them plural.


This rule looks too good to be true, and that’s why we’re starting with it. When in doubt, the noun in question probably just needs an -s to become plural. That’s how many, many words in the English language operate. If we gave you a complete list, you’d be reading it for years. So, don’t bother memorizing it. Instead, just remember that adding -s makes regular nouns plural. What do we mean by regular nouns? Well, we started with this rule because all the other rules that follow are the exceptions! It’s hard to explain what we mean when you haven’t seen the other rules, so let’s provide some examples for this rule!

If we have a word such as “cup”, how would we make this regular noun plural? Following the rule above, just add -s! It’s that simple: one cup, two cups. Easy, right? Remember, plural means more than one noun. So even if we’re talking about fifty-eight thousand cups, still just add an -s to make it plural.

Need more examples? We’ve got you covered: rocks, tables, fruits, dogs, computers, legs, chickens. Many, many nouns follow this essential rule!

For nouns ending in ch, sh, s, ss, x, z: add “-es” to make them plural.


Welcome to rule number two, or what we like to call: exception number one. The above letter combinations are extremely important for making nouns plural. That’s because, instead of adding -s as above, if the base words end in ch, sh, s, ss, x, or z, simply add -es instead! This rule is a little nicer because it gives you something to look for in an ending, instead of the generalized “regular” noun. Thinking about a sandwich? If you can imagine more than one, it’d become sandwiches. How about fox? Foxes! Notice how the endings of these nouns are ch and x. Don’t worry, we’ll give you more examples: Dishes, brushes, classes, buzzes.

For most nouns ending in a consonant + -o, add “-es” to make them plural.


This rule is also very easy to spot. You only have to focus on one letter ending for nouns: -o. If a noun ends in an -o, then it probably just needs -es to make that word plural! Super easy stuff, isn’t it? We didn’t combine rules two and three because rule three has a few exceptions that make it unique. We’ll go over those after we tackle the basics with examples.

Say you’re looking at a recipe that calls for more than one tomato and more than one potato. See how both of these words end in -o? Therefore, you need tomatoes and potatoes (just add -es)! Yes, it’s a little silly that the ends of these words spell out toes.English words can look a little funny sometimes. That’s the way the cookie crumbles!

Since we talk so often about exceptions, it’s time to introduce a few major ones to rule three. For instance, the plural of video is videos (just -s). Some more notable examples include: radios, pianos, zoos, studios, kangaroos, avocados, and photos. There are only a few exceptions, and the ones we’ve listed here are the most common.


Our very first guide on English plurals is in the books! What did you think of S, ES Endings? Not too difficult, are they? We think you got the hang of them, but if not, you can always go back to reread and study the examples in detail. Why not test your skills with our deck on S, ES Endings? FactSumo’s deck is designed with the student in mind: hone your skills, practice your weaknesses, and feel confident in plural endings! FactSumo is here to help with all your studying needs.

Feeling really confident? Good! That means the second episode, Y Endings, is just a click away! Why don’t you head there now to see what’s in store for you? If you don’t think you’re ready to continue, no pressure! We want you to learn at your own pace. Either way, see you soon on FactSumo!