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You can use the word "pick" when making a choice or when going to get something:

  • Terry picked out a few shirts to bring on vacation.
  • Maya went to the car dealership to pick out a new car.
  • Sarah needs to go to the store to pick up some milk.
  • The paint they picked out for their living room will go well with their furniture.
  • Joe needs to pick his brother up at the airport.
  • Which word did I pick for Word of the Day?

When lifting something up off of a flat surface or on the floor, use pick + up:

  • Pick up your shoes.
  • Please pick your coat up off of the floor.
  • A crane is used for picking up heavy construction materials when a large building goes up.
  • He’s helping her pick up paper that fell to the floor.

The word "pick" is also used for harvesting crops (food) on a farm or from a garden.

  • The workers are picking strawberries this morning.
  • We should go pick some tomatoes from the garden. They’re ripe.
  • Picking fruit can be back-breaking work if you do it all day.

When used as a noun, "pick" means choice:

  • Her choice for a college turned out to be a very good pick.
  • Tom made a bad pick.
  • This is an interesting pick for a place to eat.
  • We got the pick of the litter when we bought our dog. (pick of the litter = first choice. This is usually used for puppies, but you can use it for other things.)

Here are a few other interesting ways to use the word "pick."

  • This car has good pick up. (pick up = speed)
  • Bob bought a pick up. (pick up = truck)
  • The teacher picked apart Sally’s essay, but she appreciated the criticism. (pick apart = criticize or analyze)
  • Jennifer feels that her boss is picking on her. (pick on = to tease or cause problems)
  • Why don’t you pick on someone your own size? (This is kind of an expression used when someone is harassing or hurting another person who is smaller, weaker, more fragile, etc.)

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This page was first published on September 5, 2014.



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