How to use AT, ON and IN (2: Place)

The usage of AT, ON and IN for expressions of place is similar to that for expressions of time.

Where?

AT is used for precise DETAILS:

address:

* I live at 32, High Street


details of location: (Imagine you are trying to explain to a friend where your home is so that (s)he can find it.)

* The house is at the end of the street
* My room is at the back/front of the house, at the top of the stairs


places of work, home, places to visit:

* at work, school, university, home
* at (Kumamoto) University
* at the cinema, at the zoo
* I spent today at work.
* I am a student at Kumamoto University.
* I am sitting at my desk.


ON is used when an object is physically ‘ON TOP OF‘ another

* My apartment is on the third floor.
* We all live on Earth.
* Robinson Crusoe lived on a small island for several years.
* The book is on the table.


It is also used for directions

* on the right/left


IN is used when something is ‘INSIDE‘ a larger space

* I live in Kumamoto, in Japan, in Asia, in the northern hemisphere…
* in space, in the desert, in the sea, in the house, in the lab


Also note the expression ‘in the middle’

NO WORD is needed for:

* here
* upstairs/downstairs

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