As a copy editor, it’s important to understand the rules relating to agreement with minor. This refers to the concept of matching the verb form with the subject of a sentence, specifically when the subject is a minor or child.
When a sentence includes a minor as the subject, it’s important to match the verb form to the number and person of the subject. For example, if the subject is “the child,” the verb should be third person singular, such as “The child is happy.” If the subject is “the children,” the verb should be third person plural, such as “The children are playing.”
However, sometimes the subject may be a collective noun that includes minors and adults, such as “the family.” In this case, the verb should match the noun’s use in the sentence. If the focus is on the collective noun as a singular unit, then a singular verb should be used, such as “The family is going on vacation.” If the focus is on the individuals within the collective noun, then a plural verb should be used, such as “The family are all packing their bags.”
It’s also important to consider the age of the minor in relation to the verb form. For example, if the minor is a baby or infant, the verb form may be simplified, such as “The baby sleeps a lot.” However, if the minor is older and the subject of the sentence is more complex, such as “The child who won the spelling bee,” the verb form should still match the number and person of the subject.
Another rule to consider is when the subject of the sentence is a group of minors. In this case, the verb form should match the collective noun, such as “The group of children is excited to go to the zoo.”
It’s important to keep these rules in mind when editing content that includes minors as subjects. Proper agreement with minor not only ensures correct grammar but also shows respect for the subject and the audience.