English Language Blog

Prepositions of movement Posted by on May 31, 2021 in English Grammar, English Language, English Vocabulary

All teachers know it: when it comes to prepositions, students cannot help but roll their eyes in frustration. And there is no denying that this grammar topic can be highly confusing even to the most advanced learners. And in some cases we might come across that word that we didn’t even know was a preposition to begin with. After all, there are over 150 of them in the English language!

Worry not, we’re not going over all of them today! Either way, it is about time we move beyond the classic IN – ON – AT trio and get to the equally important prepositions of movement. To put it simply, these prepositions indicate the action of going from one place to another, pointing towards a direction. They are often paired with verbs of motion. Using these specific prepositions will not only boost your vocabulary but will also help you express yourself more clearly. So how about we get around to it, shall we?


from one side to the opposite side of something

  • There’s a bridge further down, but you can also take a boat across the river, it’s much faster.
  • You can buy good quality bread at this bakery just across the street.


The children were running around the house (Photo by RUN 4 FFWPU from Pexels)

moving in circles or surrounding an area

  • We couldn’t find anywhere to park so we just drove around the block until we found a spot.
  • The children were running around the house playing tag.


moving to a higher position than before

  • I lost my keys so I had to climb over the wall to get to the house. 
  • It was breathtaking when the plane flew over the Alps. 


show a destination or direction.

  • We’re setting off to Paris next month. 
  • Do you go to school by car?

    The dog ran towards the door (Photo by Helena Lopes from Pexels)


show the movement of coming closer to someone or something.

  • The dog ran towards the door when he heard the bell. 
  • My son let go of my hand and walked towards the candy shop. 


from one side to the other

  • Passengers need to go through customs after they leave the plane.
  • I was driving through a tunnel, so the call dropped. 


from outside to inside a place

  • The driver lost control of the car and drove into a tree. 
  • Everyone stared as she walked into the room. 


It is exhausting to ride a bike up the hill (Photo by The Lazy Artist Gallery from Pexels)

movement to a high place

  • I wish I could move to a building with an elevator, I can’t stand going up the stairs anymore.
  • It can be very exhausting to ride a bike up the hill.


movement to a low place

  • The driver is here, I need to go down
  • I was walking down the street when I saw them.


movement to a surface

  • He helped me step down from the ladder onto the ground.
  • I was in a hurry so I just tossed the documents onto my desk.


passing in front of a place while moving

  • We honked as we drove past his office.
  • I walked past the shop today and caught a glimpse of their new spring collection.

So, what did you guys think? Did you already use all of these prepositions of movement? Can you remember anything that’s missing from our list? Leave your comments below! See you guys next time.

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