These homophones are tricky because there are three of them, they all sound the same, but they have highly different meanings. There is one simply trick that will help you distinguish the difference between them–one trick will help you sort out all three homophones.
to–Preposition; shows direction or relation to another object
John walked to the store.
two–Adjective; shows number (yes, it can also be a noun, but let’s not worry about that!)
Two people walked to the store.
too–Adverb; modifies a verb
John, too, walked to the store, along with two other people.
The trick is rather simple; however, mindfulness–or attention–must be paid in order for the trick to work. Perhaps the mindfulness is the biggest trick of all!
We can see that all three parts of speech have the letter “o” in them–to, too, two. Notice that too has more “o’s” than the others.
This is the trick–if you can substitute the part of speech with the synonyms more, or much, or also, or in addition, you can safely use too.
Most of us clearly understand that two is a number, a numeral, which helps us eliminate it as an option. If you have a hard time remembering two is a number, consider that “w” has “two” “u’s” in it… I don’t want to distract, or give too (much) much information, though. Simply put, just remember–there are more “o’s” in too, and too means “more” or “also.”