My father’s name’s Richard

Possessive ‘s vs ´s = is

In English it is very common to read sentences like My father’s name’s Richard. The ‘S can mean possession or the contraction of the verb IS. Look at the examples:

Martha’s a nurse. Martha IS a nurse. (IS)

Pablo’s car is red. The car of Pablo is red. (Possession)

Look at the explanation below. We use the possessive case:

1.To show that something belongs to somebody.


Julia’s bag (The bag of Julia)

Leonardo’s car (The car of Leonardo)

Sandra’s book (The book of Sandra)

2.To explain the relationship between two or more people.


Gerardo’s sister (the sister of Gerardo)

Lucia’s father (the father of Lucia)

Patricia’s children (the children of Patricia)

Writing exercise

Look at the following family tree. Who is who? Look at the example and complete with the name of the correct person.

Mira el siguiente árbol genealógico ¿Quién es quien? Observa el ejemplo y completa con el nombre de la persona de acuerdo al parentesco. Utiliza las palabras que se te proporcionan.


Derek’s daughter is


Brian’s father is


Jennifer’s mother is


Derek’s sister is


Ashley’s cousin is


Tim’s brother-in-law is


Complete all the gaps to get feedback.
Drag and drop exercise

Read the following sentences and decide if they refer to the possessive case ‘S or to the contraction of the verb IS. Drag the sentences to the correct box.

Lee las siguientes oraciones y decide si la 'S se refiere al posesivo o a la contracción del verbo "is". Arrastra las oraciones al recuadro que corresponda.

  • Pedro’s dog is black.
  • I think this is Perla’s cat.
  • Look! That is Manuel’s sister.
  • Susan’s hair is very long.
  • Wow! Mary’s a very attractive girl.
  • My English teacher’s Canadian.
  • The kid’s very intelligent.
  • I think Bianca’s his girlfriend.

Possessive ‘S

Sara’s father is an architect.


Alejandro’s a famous chef in Bolivia.