Prepositions: In, On, and At (with specific times and places):
|The prepositions in, on, and at can be used to indicate time and place. Notice how they are used in the following situations:
A: Where's your office?B: In Taipei, Taiwan.
A: Really? What part of Taipei?B: It's on Chung Shan North Road.
A: I know that area. Where exactly is it?B: It's at 105 Chung Shan North Road, next to the bookstore.
C: When is the wedding?D: It's in June.
C: What day?D: It's on Saturday, the 25th.
C: What time?D: It starts at 6:00.
Prepositions with articles and locations
When talking about locations, use at to indicate the general vicinity or area, and in to indicate inside the building, enclosed area, etc. For example:
|at the swimming pool (on site)||in the swimming pool (in the pool itself i.e. in the water)|
|at the post office/bank (general)||in the post office/bank (inside the building)|
|at the zoo (visitors, general area)||in the zoo (animals in their cages)|
|at school||in the classroom|
Sample sentences:I met my wife at the theater. (while watching a movie)
I spilled my drink in the theater (on the floor of the building)
She works at the library on Wednesdays.
She found a rare coin in the library (building).
Dr. Jones works at the hospital every day.
John was in the hospital for a week with a broken leg.
For school, prison, and church, the is used to indicate the building. No article indicates the general situation. Note the following:
|in school (studying, listening to teacher, etc.)||in the school (building)|
|in jail/prison (staying there as a criminal)||in the jail/prison (temporary)|
|in church (praying, listening to a sermon, etc.)||in the church (building)|
|in church (attending services)||in the church (fixing the windows)|
|at church||at the church|
|in prison (He committed a crime.)
|at the prison (visiting his friend) |