Reflexive Pronouns With Timesaver Paperless Test

Suitable for Grades 6+ and ESL learners with paperless test and flashcards.

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Reflexive pronouns are a type of pronoun in the English language, unlike pronouns, that help us give names to people, places, or things; examples of reflexive pronouns reference the self. Here's all you need to know about them! The age range here will focus on examples that grades 6+ should be able to grasp easily. Additionally, we will use concrete sentence structures or reflexive pronoun examples in order to help ESL students in these age groups. So, what are reflexive pronouns in English?

reflexive pronouns

What is a Reflexive Pronoun?

In English, examples of reflexive pronouns end in -self for the singular person or -selves for the plural. Once you know and understand this simple rule, it should become quite easy to spot reflexive pronoun examples over time. A reflexive pronoun can maintain a function as either an indirect object or a direct one. When you are dealing with the reflexive, the subject and the object of a sentence become the same thing.

Reflexive Pronoun Table

Similar to pronouns, reflexive pronouns also change depending on who is speaking. Examples of reflexive pronouns can be in the first, second, or third person.

First Person Second Person Third Person
Myself/Oneself/Ourselves Yourself Himself/Herself/Itself/Themselves

When you see any words that are pronouns that end like this, you can be certain that they are reflexive. In the following sections, we’ll see how a reflexive pronoun looks when it is in action as part of a regular sentence.

Reflexive Pronoun Flashcards

Using the reflexive pronouns in the table above, flip the flashcards for a reflexive pronoun example for each type.

How do These Pronouns Reflect?

For students who might still struggle with the idea of reflexive pronoun examples, it may be helpful for the instructor to point out that these pronouns reflect on themselves. Let us start by contrasting these pronouns with other types. We can use slightly different sentence structures to show how the pronouns might change here.

Reflexive Pronoun Examples

1. David decided to take Emily to a nice dinner out as a reward for her great work.

We don’t know the specific relationship between David and Emily, but it is clear that Emily is the object of the sentence here. She is the one receiving the action of the verb, and it is an action that the sentence’s subject, David, is performing for her benefit.

2. David decided to treat himself to a dinner out as a reward for all his great work.

In the second sentence, David becomes both the subject and object. He did his own work, and he felt that he deserved his own reward for it. No one else would award anything to him, so he took it upon himself to take himself out to dinner.

3. Jacob decided to cook Jacob a special meal for this occasion.

In this sentence, we’ve substituted the usual pronoun in the reflexive for Jacob’s own name. Instead of the reflexive, we use the proper pronoun twice. While this does do the same job as the reflexive, it also adds slight confusion to the sentence.

Theoretically, Jacob could be cooking a nice meal for another person with the same name, but naming Jacob twice can sound a bit unnatural to a native speaker’s ear. So, instead, in this situation, you could name the relationship between the two people or even use a regular pronoun like he.

4. Jacob decided to cook himself dinner.

In this sentence, the reflexive pronoun example shows that Jacob made dinner for himself, a dinner he's going to eat. He is the person who cooks dinner and eats the dinner.

Common Mistakes for Reflexive Pronouns

Unfortunately, it can be common for some native and non-native English speakers to use reflexive pronouns where they are not appropriate. Most commonly, we see this error crop up when writers or speakers try to pair the reflexive with compound subjects or objects. In the previous sections, we didn't use compounds to illustrate our reflexive pronoun examples. Let’s try that now in order to show students how they might mess it up.

1) Kent and myself will facilitate the presentation today.

We’ve now made a mistake with the reflexive. It may not be obvious immediately, but there is an easy way to tell. If we take out the other part of the subject and only leave the reflexive, the sentence reads as,

2) Myself will facilitate the presentation today.

This is quite clearly an incorrect way to construct the sentence. To correct this problem, we simply change the reflexive part of the sentence to the more traditional first-person pronoun of I.

3) I will facilitate the presentation today.

This becomes the correct way to structure the sentence. Based on this, we also know that we can insert it into our original sentence that features Kent as part of the compound subject, making Kent and I will facilitate the presentation today.

More Examples of Reflexive Pronouns

Take a look at the following examples and see if you can identify the reflexive pronouns.

  • I always take care of myself.
  • I taught myself to play piano.
  • Did you make the lego tower by yourself?
  • Being honest with oneself is more important than being honest with others.
  • Sandy made the cake by herself.
  • They played outside all afternoon by themselves.
  • The teacher introduced themself to the new class.
  • Can we go by ourselves?

Reflexives and Other Pronouns

Pronoun reflexives are ones that you can tie back to their own basic versions. These would include things like I, he, she, or them. However, there are other types of reflexives, too. Verbs may be one of the most common examples of other parts of speech that can take on the reflexive. In terms of English mechanics, the reflexive verb is something that the subject of the sentence does in which they are also the recipient.

For example, when we write that Angela scrubs herself, the verb here is reflexive. Angela is the one doing the action, and she also receives the action.

Reflexive Pronoun Quiz

Think you've got it? Try this multiple-choice reflexive pronoun paperless test.

1. Sally decided to cook dinner for ___________. (her)

Choose the best answer from the choices below

Possible answers

2. You can cut out the image by __________.

Choose the best answer from the choices below

Possible answers

3. Fred and Tommy never do their schoolwork by ________.

Choose the best answer from the choices below

Possible answers

4. My dog never wants to go outside by ________.

Choose the best answer from the choices below

Possible answers


A good way to remember whether a pronoun is reflexive is to ask yourself whether the subject might be talking about or doing something for their own sake or for themselves. If your answer is yes, chances are that you’ve stumbled upon a reflexive pronoun.

Want to learn more? Check out our other resources, worksheets, quizzes, and examples for Grades K-6+, ESL, teachers, and timesaver resources for homeschooling. Supplement and empower your digital classroom activities to craft the perfect ELA lesson every time.