Prepositions of Time: 6 Easy Exceptions


In this lesson, I'll show you how to talk about time correctly and easily in

English. Specifically, we'll be looking at some prepositions of time, and also

some expressions of time. Okay? And these expressions are used very

frequently. So, let's see what they are. All right. So, I'm going to read you a

sentence, and after that there are four endings. Maybe they're right, and maybe

they're wrongso you tell me what's what. Okay? "Let's meet in the

morning.", "Let's meet in the afternoon.", "Let's meet in the

evening.", "Let's meet in the night." So, think about it. Were they correct?

Was anything wrong? Might be right; might be wrong. Tell me what you think

right away, because you need to know this kind of instinctively. And it's not

so obvious. Okay? So, I'm going to tell you what the answer is. Actually, there

is one wrong here, and it's this one. We do not say: "in the night"; we say: "in

the morning", "in the afternoon", "in the evening", but we do not say: "in the

night". We say, what? "at night". "Let's meet at night." Why? Why is it

different? I don't know. That's how it is. Okay? These are expressions, and

that one is an exception. All right? So, we say it differently from the other

ones. There is no particular reason. Sometimes you just have to learn things

by heart, like here. Okay?

Now, let's look at another example. "I was tired this morning.", "I was tired

this afternoon.", "I was tired this evening.", "I was tired this night."

Were those all okay? Anything wrong there? What do you think? Well, there is

something wrong there. And guess what? It's this one. Okay? Again, so we do not

say: "I was tired this night." We say: "I was tired tonight." Okay? So, there

again, we see that "night" is an exception. So, we can say: "this

morning", "this afternoon", "this evening", but we can't saywe cannot

say: "this night". At that point, we change it; we use a different

expression, which is: "tonight". Okay? Again, why? Why? Sometimes in English we

say: "Why? Because the sky is so high", which means there is no particular

reason. It's just the way it is. Okay? All right. Let's take another one. "He

called yesterday morning.", "He called yesterday afternoon.", "He called

yesterday evening.", "He called yesterday night." So, are those okay or

is there a problem? What do you think? Well, guess what? It's this one again.

Hey, did you see a pattern, there? Okay. So, what do we say? We do say:

"yesterday morning", we do say: "yesterday afternoon", we do say:

"yesterday evening", but then we say: "last night". "He called last night."

Now, we use that with "night", but we don't say: "last morning". Okay? We

don't usually say... use "last" with the other ones, and certainly not in North

American English. Okay?

But we saw in each of these cases that "night" was an exception, and that you

had to learn a different expression for "night". Okay? So, just repeat after me,

because one of the ways of learning is to hear it; another way to learn... to

remember is to write it. Okay? And another way to say... remember is to say

it. So, let's try to do some of these things. Okay? After a while, your ears

will tell you that: "No, that doesn't sound right." Just like in your own

language. But, now, English is one of your languages. So, let's do it. Ready?

"In the morning", "in the afternoon", "in the evening", "at night"; "this

morning", "this afternoon", "this evening", "tonight"; "yesterday

morning", "yesterday afternoon", "yesterday evening", "last night". Okay?

Got those? All right. Let's look at a few more.

All right. So, the first one: "See you tomorrow morning.", "See you tomorrow

afternoon.", "See you tomorrow evening.", "See you tomorrow night." Are

these okay? Any problems? Anything we should change? Is anything an exception?

Think about it. Okay? So, you know what? These are all fine. These are okay. All

right? And why is it an exception? Because, usually, we were saying that

"night" has a different use; but in this case, it's actually okay to say:

"tomorrow morning", "tomorrow afternoon", "tomorrow evening",

"tomorrow night". Okay? It wasn't like what we saw before with "yesterday" or

with "this". All right? So, these are fine, and that's why it's kind of an


All right. Now, we come to a little bit of a situation with the prepositions.

Now, you remember I had told you that we say: "in the morning", "in the

afternoon", "in the evening", and "at night" — correct? We just learned that;

we just reviewed that. But what happens if you have the day mentioned as well?

Something different. So, let's look at the options. Do we say: "in Tuesday

morning", "at Tuesday morning", or "on Tuesday morning"? Or: "afternoon", or

"evening", or "night". Okay? Well, there's only one correct possibility

here, and that is this one. Okay? We cannot say: "in Tuesday", just like we

cannot say: "in Tuesday" or "at Tuesday" — we need to only say: "on Tuesday".

Right? Whenever we are talking about a day or a date, we say: "on". So, even if

you have, after that, mentioned: "morning", "afternoon", "evening" or

"night" — what's more important is not that expression: "in the morning", but

this expression: "on" plus the day. Okay? So, in this case, it changes a

little bit. All right? So, we say: "on Tuesday morning", "on Tuesday

afternoon", "on Thursday evening", "on Friday night". Okay? So, keep that in

mindthat even though we had the expressions: "in the morning", "in the

afternoon", "in the evening", and "at night", as soon as we mention the day,

we're going to use the preposition "on". All right? Good.

And, now, the last expression; something that's used very often: "Good morning.",

"Good afternoon.", "Good evening.", "Good night." Okay? So, those are fine

as expressions. So, why...? Why are they here on the board? Because there is a

slight difference in the way that we use them. And the difference is this. Do you

know what the difference is? Okay. I'll tell you. So, these three: "Good

morning.", "Good afternoon.", "Good evening." — these are all like saying:

"Hello" at that particular time of day. So, when you arrive somewhere, let's say

okay? — and you see someone. Okay? You come to work in the morning, you say:

"Hey. Good morning." It's like a way of saying: "Hi", but in the morning. And

you go to... You meet someone for lunch, and it's a formal situation, and you

say: "Good afternoon." Okay? Or you call an office and you're trying to be very

polite to the receptionist, and you say: "Good afternoon. May I speak to Mr.

Johnson, please?" Okay? So, again, it's a way of saying: "Hi". But another way;

another more formal greeting. You go to a restaurant and the manager asks you...

says to you: "Good evening, sir. Can I get you a table?" And you say: "Yes,

please." So, "Good evening" is also another way that that person said "Hi"

to you, when you arrive somewhere. Okay?

But let's say now it's a... it's later, it's even later at night and somebody

goes to a bar, and he walks in and the bartender says: "Good night." Is that

okay? No. So, "Good night" is not used to say "Hello", even if it is night.

"Good night" is only used when somebody leaves or sleeps. Okay? So, we do not

say: "Good night", even if it is night, to say: "Hi". So, if it's night and you

go to your friend's house, you don't say: "Hey. Good night." No. You can't do

that when you first walk in. All right? So, it's not a greeting that you use

when you first meet somebody. But at the end of the night, or whenever you're

leaving, you can say to him: "Okay. Take care. Good night." So, if you're not

going to see him or her for the rest of the night, then you can say: "Good

night." And another way that's used very, very frequently is when someone is

going to sleep, let's say most... usually parents and children. Okay? So,

before the child goes to sleep, the parents gave him or her a kiss, and say:

"Okay, sweetheart. Good night." And then they put off the light, and they hope

that the child will sleep all night long. Okay? So, that's another way that

we say: "Good night." And sometimes with children, we also add other things,

like: "Sweet dreams", and things like that. Okay? But the main difference here

is that these can be used as greetings when you arrive somewhere as a way to

say "Hi"; and this one is when you're leaving, or when someone is about to go

to sleep, and it's a way of saying: "Bye". Okay? So, these are some of the

expressions. Now let's check how much you remember of what we learned in this


All right. So, there are seven sentences on the board. Some of these are right;

some are wrongyou decide which. Okay? All right. Number one: "I'll send the

email this afternoon." Is that right or wrong? If you need to, you can pause the

video if you need a little more time to think about it, but I'm going to go

ahead. All right? So: "I'll send the email this afternoon" is correct. Okay?

So, that was fine. "Are we meeting in Sunday?" Is that right or wrong? Pause

if you need to. This one is incorrect. Should be: "on Sunday". And again, if it

said: "on Sunday morning", "on Sunday afternoon", "on Sunday evening", "on

Sunday night". Okay? So, whether it just says the day or it's followed by

"morning", "afternoon", "evening", or "night" — you still need to use the

preposition "on". Okay? Good. Number three: "The concert is tomorrow night."

Right or wrong? Okay. So, this one is? Correct. All right? We can say:

"tomorrow morning", "tomorrow afternoon", "tomorrow evening", and

"tomorrow night". All right.

Number four: "Good night. How are you?" Is that correct? Okay. No, that is

wrong, because we cannot use: "Good night" to say "Hello". Okay? You could

say: "Good morning. How are you?", "Good afternoon, how are you?", "Good evening.

How are you?" But you either say: "Good night" and then nothing after that

okay? — or you'd have to say something else here, and then say: "How are you?"

Okay? So, we say: "Good night" when? When some... somebody is going to sleep.

Okay? Or it doesn't have to be a child; it could also be an adult. Okay? They're

going to their room, you say: "Good night." Okay? Or to your partner, you

can say: "Good night." And you also say it, let's say, when you're leaving

someone's house and you've had dinner and you've had... spent a nice evening

with them; now you're going home, you're not going to see them again, so you say:

"All right. Thank you very much. Good night." All right. That's that.

Next: "The snow looks beautiful in the night." Is that right or wrong? So, that

one is wrong. It should be: "at night". Okay? So, remember there we could say:

"in the morning", "in the afternoon", "in the evening", but "at night". Okay?

You'll get used to it. Pretty... Really soon, the rhythm of it will get into

your... your English brain. Okay? Good. Number six: "My exam is in Monday

morning." Is that right or wrong? Okay? That one is wrong. Again, like we said,

where? Here. Okay? The same here. It should be: "on Monday morning". Okay?

So, whether we're saying just: "on Monday", or we say: "on Monday morning",

"on Monday afternoon", "on Monday evening", or "on Monday night". Okay?

Very good. And the last one, number seven: "The parcel arrived yesterday

night." Is that right or wrong? Okay. That one is also wrong. Because it

should be, what? What do we say instead of: "yesterday night"? We say: "last

night". Okay? So, we do say: "yesterday morning", we do say: "yesterday

afternoon", we do say: "yesterday evening", but then we say: "last night".

Okay? "The parcel arrived last night."

Okay. So, I know it can be a little bit confusing; but at the same time, you can

see that... — sorrythat there are some patterns. Okay? So, once you

understand those patterns and you start to apply them regularly, you will master

it. Okay? And make up your mind that now that you spent the time to watch this

lesson, you're going to master this once and for all. There are not that many

that I covered. And whatever we covered, just make it a point to review them; if

necessary, watch the video again in the course of this week; write some

sentences out, say some sentences out loud, and try to use them this week.

Okay? So that you really review them a lot. And to do some more practice, go to

our website: There, you can do a quiz on this. And also

subscribe to my YouTube channel for lots of other lessons that will help you

learn English more easily and quickly. Thanks very much for watching. Bye for

now, and all the best with your English.