If + will (first conditional)

1st conditional (for present and future)

Usage:

We use 1st conditional to say that something is possible after something else happens.

When a condition in the first part of the sentence ( ‚if‘ part ) happens, next thing follows ( will +…..).

You can’t use 1st conditional for past possibilities, we use 3rd conditional for that (see B2 section).

Form:

If + present simple, will……

Examples:

If I learn English well, I will go to study in England.

If you study hard, you will get good grades.

If you get good grades at school, your parents will buy you a new computer.

If he leaves work at 6pm, he won’t come home before 7pm.

If she starts saving money now, she’ll have enough for a decent car next year.

If they don’t stop shouting, I’ll call the police!

 

We never use ‚if + will‘ in the same part of the sentence.

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Question tags

Question tags

Usage:

They are small questions at the and of affirmative sentences (statements) used in speech (a lot in BrE) and sometimes informal writing (emails, chat rooms, etc.)

Question tags are NOT used in formal writing.

We use question tags to check whether the information we have is correct, ask for an agreement or show interest in what the other person is saying.

Form:

Negative tags after positive statements and vice versa

Present tenses:

I’m late, aren’t I ?

You like ice cream, don’t you ?

He prefers tea over coffee, doesn’t he ?

She doesn’t smoke, does she ?

We don’t eat meat, do we my dear?

They never drive to work, do they ?

You’re my new assistant, aren’t you ?

We are not leaving now, are we ?

She’s very upset about that insult, isn’t she?

You haven’t got a spare pen, have you ?

She has got a new car, hasn’t she ?

They have got some fresh fish, haven’t they ?

He isn’t working late today, is he ?

They are not going to move abroad, are they ?

Past tense:

I wasn’t late for the screening, was I ?

You were there with your wife, weren’t you ?

He wasn’t at home when you called in, was he ?

She moved to Plymouth, didn’t she ?

It was quite cold last weekend, wasn’t it ?

They bought a new pet, didn’t they ?

He didn’t come to the party, did he ?

Future tense:

You will go there with me, won’t you ?

He won’t be fired, will he ?

She’ll call her dad when she wants a lift back home, won’t she ?

It won’t be a very nice Christmas without our parents around, will it ?

We will spend our holiday in Greece this summer, won’t we ?

They won’t send their kids to a public school, will they ?

Can

You can’t get up without help, can you ?

He can drive a lorry, can’t he ?

She can’t play football, can she ?

They can’t catch us, can they ?

Would

You would like to join the club, wouldn’t you ?

He wouldn’t go there on his own free will, would he ?

She would do it if she could, wouldn’t she ?

They wouldn’t like us to play a loud music, would they ?

Could

You could lend me a pound, couldn’t you ?

He couldn’t find the shopping centre his girl was in, could he ?

She could come next weekend, couldn’t she ?

They couldn’t book a flight to Jamaica over Xmas, could they ?

Intonation:

When tag is a real question, the voice goes up (the same as in ‚Yes/No questions‘)

When tag is not a real question, the voice goes down (as in Wh-… questions)

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Used to

Used to

 

We use noun/pronoun + ‚used to‘ to talk about past habits and past states of things

Examples:

I used to live in Bristol but now I live in London.

You used to call me every weekend but not any more and I miss you.

He used to go school in Manchester but now he attends university in Leeds.

She used to go out with her friends every Friday night before she had children.

We used to meet every other Saturday (every 2 weeks) for a drink in our local pub but some people have moved out of town or got married and so on.

I remember that couple. They used to live in a house across the street but now they live in other part of town.

Negative sentences:

I didn’t use(d) to like Marmite when I was a little boy.

You didn’t use(d) to smoke when you were at university.

He didn’t use(d) to wear glasses but now he has to.

She didn’t use(d) to like watching football as far as I can remember.

We didn’t use(d) to go to work by public transport but the price of petrol is so high these days that we were forced to reconsider.

They didn’t use(d) to like classical music but now they even go to opera from time to time.

Questions:

Did you use(d) to play football as a child? No, I didn’t.

Did he use(d) to like death metal music when he was a teenager. Yes, he did.

Did she use(d) to go out with him? (meaning: they were a couple)

Did we use(d) to visit our in-laws every Easter?

Did they use(d) to live next door to Paul?

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Who, Which, That, Whom, Whose, When, Where

Relative pronouns:

Who, Which, That, Whom, Whose, When, Where

Who – we use for people

That’s the man who I saw outside your flat last week. ( – I saw him and I told you about him)

She was the one who looked strange to me. ( – I thought she looked strange.)

They are the couple who is getting married next month. ( – I told you that these people are getting married.)

Which – we use for animals and things

That was a lovely dog which I saw you with yesterday. ( – I saw you with a lovely dog.)

He had a car accident in the car which he bought last year. ( – He bought a car last year and has had an accident recently.)

The cake which you brought with you was very nice. ( – You brought a very nice cake.)

That – both people and things

He’s the man that won the race. ( – I told you about him winning the race.)

I lost the mobile phone that I got for Christmas. ( – I got a phone and I lost it.)

She married a man that she met at university. ( – She met him at university.)

Whom – same as ‚who‘ but formal

You should call the man to whom I told about your special skills. ( – I told him about your skills and you should call him.)

Meet Jack, my boss, whom I told you about earlier. ( – I told you about him earlier.)

Whose – use as his, her, its, their

Come and meet John whose sister is my colleague. ( – John’s sister is my colleague.)

I apologised to Mary whose car I crashed. ( – Mary’s got a car, I crashed it and I apologised.)

He fell in love with Jane whose father is a doctor. (- father of Jane is a doctor.)

When – we use it for time

It happened when I drove to work this morning.

We met when on holiday in Spain.

I played tennis a lot when I was at secondary school.

Where – we use it for place

This is the house where I spent most of my childhood.

Don’t tell him where you live.

We like going to the bar where we met for the first time.

Why – after reason

That’s the reason why I have never got married.

He’s the reason why we moved out of Bristol.

When an object in a main clause is the subject in the subordinate clause we can not omit who, which, that.

Whose and where are normally not omitted from a sentence.

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Must, have to

Must & have to

Must – I feel strongly about that; speaker’s authority

I must get up early tomorrow. (= I feel that it is necessary for me to get up; I decided)

You must go there. (= I advice you strongly that you go there; I’m telling you to go)

The government must stop wasting taxpayers‘ money! (= I feel very strongly about that but I can’t order the government to stop spending)

They must tell their boss about that costumer complaint. (= It is only my opinion; I can’t make them tell the boss about the problem)

Passengers must travel with the valid ticket only.

Visitors must refrain from smoking inside the museum. (= ‚must‘ in 3rd person is used mainly in written notices and instructions)

Must not – 1) negative obligation imposed by the speaker

2) emphatic advice

You must not smoke here. (= it is banned to smoke here)

also possible: You can’t smoke here.

She mustn’t tell it to anyone. (I feel strongly about that)

We must not go in while the boss is angry. (= it’s a good idea to wait outside; giving the advice)

Have to – external authority, outside influence

I have to work late today because my boss told me to. (I have no control over the situation)

You have to drive carefully because there’s black ice on the roads. (= I’m just saying that, not ordering you)

He has to take an over-night flight to Dubai because there’s no other. (= making a statement about the outside influence)

She has to take her children to school every morning. (= no one else will do it for her; it’s her duty)

We have to stop at Oxford on our way to London. (= statement about the situation)

They have to walk 3 miles to work every day. (= nothing I or them can do about it)

Don’t have to – not obligation; it is not necessary to do it but it is allowed to do it (you have a choice)

I don’t have to write the report tonight. (= I can write it tomorrow; there is no rush)

You don’t have to call me every day. (= It is not an imperative to call me so often)

She doesn’t have to make a coffee for her boss. (= she can do it if she wants BUT it is not in her job description)

We don’t have to drive to work. (= We can but it is not an order)

They don’t have to keep their bedrooms tidy all the time. (= a bit of mess does no harm; their parents are benevolent)

For questions: Do you have to…..?

Examples:

Do I have to do my homework now? Yes, you do.

Do you have to wear glasses all the time? No, I don’t.

Does he have to work night? Yes, he does.

Does she have to stay at home with their kids? No, she doesn’t.

Do we have to go there tomorrow? Yes, we do.

Do they have to get married? No, they don’t.

Had to – obligation in the past, both speaker’s and outside influence

I had to get up early to catch a bus to school when I was a little boy. (= it was necessary for me to do so; I had no choice)

You had to tell your mother when you will be back tonight. (= her mother wanted to know the time of your arrival)

He had to cancel his holiday because he got a flu. (= outside influence)

She had to go to the dentist last week. (= she had no choice but go)

We had to order a taxi last night. (= there were no buses at night)

They had to go shopping on Sunday. (= they had no food at home)

For future we use ‚ will have to‘

Examples:

I’ll have to call you tomorrow because I haven’t got that information yet.

You’ll have to book your holiday by Monday. (=Monday is the deadline)

He’ll have to go for a knee operation soon. (=his knee hurts and doctor says he needs an operation)

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Past continuous

Past continuous (progressive) tense

We use past continuous tense to say that something was going on at a specific time in the past and it is over now, short term situations only.

Form:

was/were + verb+ing

Examples:

I was playing a computer game all day yesterday.

What were you doing last night?

You were talking on the phone when I tried to call you.

He was learning to drive on Monday morning when I saw him.

She was sitting her maths exam on Friday afternoon.

Was she working when you came to see her?

It was raining when I got up this morning.

We were driving to Wales when our car broke down.

They were getting ready for the party when I called.

Past simple vs Past continuous

We use combination of these two tenses when we want to descrive to events happening at the same time. We use past simple for a one-off action (e.g. I called) and past continuous tense for an ongoing activity (e.g. They were getting ready).

Some more examples:

I was having a bath when I heard a loud bang.

You were cooking when I came home.

She met her last husband when she was working as an estate agent.

Verbs NOT used in continuous tenses:

  • verbs of senses: feel, hear, see, smell, sound, taste
  • verbs of feelings: love, hate, like, want, fear, respect, admire, adore, dislike, wish, prefer, impress, concern
  • verbs of mental activity: agree, believe, expect, know, mean, remember, trust, understand, recognise, realise, suppose, imagine, doubt
  • verbs of possession: belong, own, owe, possess
  • other verbs: astonish, appear, deny, seem, surprise, consist, include, fit, involve

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