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INTERMEDIATE GRAMMAR REFERENCE SET
1. The English verb system
- The six forms of a verb
- Using ING words
Using base form
Using the “s” form
- Using the past and participle forms
Verbs followed by base form or infinitive
- Verbs followed by gerund or infinitive
- Questions and Auxiliaries
- Negatives and Auxiliaries
- Questions with “Do” and “Be”
- Parts of speech
- Basic Sentence Structure
- List of Prepositions
12-13. Phrasal Verbs
- Word order
- Introduction to Clauses
- Progressive and Perfect Tenses
- Noncount nouns list
- Verbs list: Past and Past Participle
Base Form Infinitive – To Go
GO Gerund – Going
Third Person Singular Past Tense – Went
Present Tenses – Goes Past Participle – Gone
Past Present Future
Went Go/Goes Will Go
Simple Past Simple Present Simple Future
Progressive (Continuous) Tenses
Was/Were Going Am/Is/Are Going Will Be Going
Past Progressive Present Progressive Future Progressive
Had Gone Has/Have Gone Will Have Gone
Past Perfect Present Perfect Future Perfect
I talk to YOU about him, her, it, them
1 2 3
THE SIX FORMS OF A VERB
Base Form Third Person Infinitive Gerund Past Past
go goes to go going went gone
run runs to run running ran run
talk talks to talk talking talked talked
bring brings to bring bringing brought brought
- As second verbs after some main verbs (see list below).
I plan to go to her party.
She needs to buy presents.
- As the reason for a previously mentioned action. “Infinitive of Purpose”
A: Why did you go to San Francisco? B: To see a play at the Curran Theater.
A: Why were you waiting outside? B: To watch the sunset.
- As a noun subject or object
To sit at home all day is all I want!
My dream job is to play on the computer for money.
- Infinitive after adjectives
It is important to study
The fish is ready to cook now.
ING WORDS (Gerund, Present Participle, Participial Adjective)
- Progressive tenses after BE.
I am writing a sentence.
I was sitting in the garden when you called.
- As a second verb after some main verbs (can also be seen as an object as #3 below)
She quit trying to fix the computer
We feel like dancing tonight.
- As noun subject or object as the name of an activity.
Cooking is fun for me.
I enjoy reading.
My only exercise is walking.
- After prepositions
Thank you for picking me up.
I look forward to seeing you again.
We talked about going to New York.
- As a participial adjective – cause of a feeling
The museum was very interesting but the movie was boring.
- Reduced adjective clause.
The girl [who is] sitting in the front row is nice.
The girl sitting in the front row is nice.
The rain [which is] falling on the roof is loud!
The rain falling on the roof is loud!
- Sensory perception of actions in motion (continuously or in the middle of doing)
I see the leaves falling.
I hear the waves crashing on the shore.
BASE FORM Examples
- As basic present in 1st and 2nd person I work You work
- As a second verb after “do” or modals I didn’t go She will go
- In imperatives (commands) Turn right Stand up
- As a second verb in causatives (make, let, help, have) I made her do it Let me go
- As a second verb after suggest, recommend, insist, demand I insist that she be there.
- After sensory verbs with fully completed actions I saw the car hit the tree.
“S” FORM (3rd Person Singular)
- As a first verb only She works She doesn’t work
- In all present tenses when
the subject is 3rd person singular That store sells good stuff.
The bird is singing right now.
My son has gone to the store.
- As a first verb only I didn’t go She liked to swim
- When you mean a past finished event I worked yesterday
- As a second verb only
- In present perfect tense after “have” I have eaten I haven’t done it yet
- As an adjective The broken window
- In passive voice after “be” I was born My car was stolen
- In past and future perfect after “have” I had finished I will have eaten
- With past modals after “have” I shouldn’t have eaten so much.
LISTS OF VERBS FOLLOWED BY GERUND, INFINITIVE, BASE FORM, PARTICIPLE
VERBS FOLLOWED BY BASE FORM
Examples: She didn’t study. They will see. He let me stay.
Auxiliary verb DO (do, does, did)
Modals (will, would, can, could, shall, should, may, must, might)
Causative Verbs – Let, Make, Have and Help He made me cry. She lets me go early.
Suggest, Recommend, Insist, Demand – THAT+Subject+Base Form
I recommend that you turn in your homework. He insisted that she be at the meeting.
(others that can take this form or Obj+Inf include ask, advise, propose, request, require)
This is called the “mandative subjunctive” and is used when there is a feeling of command.
VERBS FOLLOWED BY THE PAST PARTICIPLE
Examples: I have driven. The book was sold.
Have – in perfect tenses, past modals and causative passive
Be – in passive voice
Get – in passive voice
VERBS FOLLOWED BY THE INFINITIVE (There are many more than this list)
Examples: I agree to help. I hope to travel. I learn to drive. I need to go.
agree ask can’t afford choose
decide expect hope learn
mean need plan want
VERBS FOLLOWED BY OBJECT THEN INFINITIVE (I ask YOU to do) (there are more)
Examples: He pays me to paint. You invite her to dance. I tell you to study.
ask allow encourage expect
force hire invite order
pay remind teach tell
VERBS FOLLOWED BY THE GERUND
Examples: I don’t mind waiting. I am staying. I go shopping. I can’t help making mistakes.
avoid be can’t help consider
don’t mind enjoy finish go
miss Quit resume spend time
VERBS FOLLOWED BY GERUND OR INFINITIVE WITH LITTLE/NO CHANGE OF MEANING
Examples: I like cooking. I like to cook. I start studying. I start to study.
begin continue start
like love hate
VERBS FOLLOWED BY GERUND OR INFINITIVE WITH A BIG CHANGE IN MEANING
Stop Stop doing = quit doing I stopped smoking in 2005.
Stop to do = stop doing something in order to do something else. We will stop to have dinner on our way to LA.
Try Try doing= you actually do it and then decide whether you like it. I tried playing tennis,
but I wasn’t very good at it. I finally tried eating sushi and I liked it!
Try to do= attempt (and fail). I am trying to touch the ceiling, but I can’t reach.
Forget – Infinitive: If I forget first, I don’t do it. I forgot to do my homework.
Gerund: I did it in the past and then I forgot that I had done it. I forgot telling
you that before..
Remember – Infinitive: I remember first, so I do it. I remember to lock the door.
Gerund: I did it before and now I look back on it. I remember running with my
friends as a child.
|Auxiliary||Plus What After?||Verb Tense Name||Time Words||Example|
|Be (present= am, is, are)||adjective, noun or prepositional phrase – no more verbs||Simple Present||Fact, usually, now||Is she a student? (time=fact)
Are they at home? (time=now)
Am I late? (time=now)
Is it cold in SF? (time=usually)
|Do (present= do, does)||Base form verb||Simple Present||Fact, usually, always, never, every day||Do you drink coffee?
Does she dance?
Do I need to be at the meeting?
|Be (present= am, is, are||ING form verb||Present Progressive||NOW||Are you studying chemistry?
Is she running to class now?
Am I speaking too fast?
|Be (past= was, were)||adjective, noun or prep. phrase – no more verbs||Simple Past||Yesterday, last week, 2 years ago||Were you in the hospital last week?
Was she angry about the broken window?
Was your father an engineer?
|Do (past= did)||Base form verb||Simple Past||Yesterday, last week, 2 years ago||Did you like the movie?
Did she work yesterday?
|Be (past= was, were)||ING form verb
|Past Progressive||at 7am this morning
while she was walking
|Were you sleeping at 7am this morning?
Was she listening to music while she was walking?
|Will||Base form verb||Simple Future||Tomorrow, next week, 2 years from now||Will he come to class on Wednesday?
Will you be at my party?
|Can||Base form verb||—||Now or future time||Can you help me with this?
Can he pick me up on Saturday?
|May||Base form verb||now or future time||May I bring you a sweater?|
|Would||Base form verb||various||Would you like another glass of water?
Would you open the door, please?
Would you see stars in an arctic sky?
(present= have, has)
|past participle||Present Perfect||already, yet, for, since, up to now||Have you eaten lunch yet?
Has your sister been married for 10 years?
Have you ever ridden a horse?
|past participle||Past Perfect||before a past time, up to a past time, the second step back||Had you graduated before you came here?
Had the mail come when you left home?
Questions and Auxiliary Verbs
Negatives Need Auxiliary Verbs
- All negatives need an auxiliary
- If you don’t have an auxiliary be, will, can…) then add “do”
- You can’t add “BE” if it isn’t already there
- Do, can, will and all modals need a main verb after them
- Use the base form of the main verb after do, can, will and all modals
- Be sometimes has a verb after it, but sometimes BE has a noun, adjective or prepositional phrase, no more verbs. That’s OK. Just add “n’t” to the BE verb.
- Have can be an auxiliary (perfect tenses) or it can be a main verb. Be careful.
|I go||I don’t go||Do you go?|
|He is happy||He isn’t happy||Is he happy?|
|She saw||She didn’t see||Did she see?|
|They are running||They aren’t running||Are they running?|
|We will need one||We won’t need one||Will we need one?|
|You can type.||You can’t type||Can you type?|
|Simple Present (be) Be+not||I am tired||I’m not tired.|
|Simple Present no be (add do) do+not (don’t, doesn’t)||I speak English
He speaks Chinese
|I don’t speak English
He doesn’t speak Chinese
|Present Progressive (be) Be+not (isn’t, aren’t)||I am studying hard.||I’m not studying hard|
|Simple past (be) Be+not (wasn’t, weren’t)||I was at home last night
You were in school.
|I wasn’t at home last night
You weren’t in school.
|Simple past no be (add do Do+not (didn’t)||I played soccer in school.||I didn’t play soccer in school|
|Simple future (will) will+not (won’t)||I will go home after class.||I won’t go home after class|
|Simple future (be going to) be + not (isn’t, aren’t)||I’m going to visit her.||I’m not going to visit her.|
|Present Perfect “have” Have+not (haven’t, hasn’t)||I have lived here for 5 years.
She has gone home.
|I haven’t lived in Russia.
She hasn’t gone home.
|“may” may+not||May I see that?||You may not see this yet.|
|“can” can+not (can’t)||I can ride a bicycle||I can’t ride a bicycle|
|“must” must+ not||I must eat more.||I must not eat more.|
|“should” should+not (shouldn’t)||You should cook this.||You shouldn’t cook this.|
|“would” would+not (wouldn’t)||She would tell me.||She wouldn’t tell me.|
QUESTION FORMS WITH “DO” AND “BE”
- A question must have an auxiliary verb.
- If you have an auxiliary in the sentence you must use the same one in the question.
- If you don’t have an auxiliary verb in the sentence, add the auxiliary verb ‘to do’.
- You can’t add ‘to be’ if it isn’t in the original sentence already.
- The first verb in a sentence has the time and person.
- Always use the base form of the main verb after ‘to do’ in negatives and questions.
Make a Question. Use Do or Be as the first word in your question.
The computer class is interesting. _____Is the computer class interesting?___
- Janet likes the teacher __________________________________
- She’s from the United States __________________________________
- He comes from El Salvador __________________________________
- They need to learn English __________________________________
- He is the English teacher __________________________________
- They listen to the teacher __________________________________
- He is a great teacher __________________________________
- The class is in the evening __________________________________
- The students like the class __________________________________
- He works at the factory __________________________________
Make a Question. Use the auxiliary you find. Only add “Do” if you have no auxiliary
Aux= do, be, have, will, can, would, should (all modals)
- My friend is coming to visit me next week. ________________________________
- They are happy with their apartment. __________________________________
- She can dance well. __________________________________
- You will visit your friend tomorrow. __________________________________
- I want to learn more quickly. __________________________________
- I am in class every day. __________________________________
- I would like pizza for dinner. __________________________________
- The books are on the table. __________________________________
- My kids will learn two languages. __________________________________
- You need to return the books to the library. _______________________________
PARTS OF SPEECH
Person _________father, mechanic___ _________________________
Place _______Berkeley, kitchen____ _________________________
Thing _______pencil, tree_________ _________________________
Concept ______cooperation, love____ _________________________
1._____A_______ 2.______________ 3._____________
Action _______Write, run_________ _________________________
Non-Action _____Have, be________ _________________________
1.___and________ 2.___________ 3.____________ 4._____________
Feeling ________happy_________ _________________________
Description ____long, blue______ _________________________
Time ________always___________ _________________________
Time ________before___________ _________________________
Place ________under____________ _________________________
|SUBJECT||VERB||OBJECT (noun) or or ADJECTIVE||PREPOSITIONAL PHRASE||TIME|
|The student||writes||sentences||in her notebook||every day|
|My brother||is||happy||with his job||this year|
ENGLISH PREPOSITIONS LIST
English Your language (but remember, some will not translate exactly)
out (of) _________________________
inside (of) _________________________
in front of _________________________
on top of _________________________
next to _________________________
across (from) _________________________
USING PHRASAL VERBS
A phrase is more than one word.
A phrasal verb is a verb that has two or three words.
We add prepositions to the verbs to make new meanings.
Look for – try to find
Look up – search for information
Look over – review
Look after – take care of
Put on – wear clothing
Put off – postpone/delay
Put out – stop a fire
Put away – in its correct place
We add prepositions to make longer verbs with different meanings.
There are many of these. Look in your dictionary. How many are there for “Put”?
Basic Sentence Structure
|My mom||looks after||my brother||at home||every day|
|The students||look up||words||in the dictionary||before the test|
|I||look over||my homework||before turning it in|
Separable and Non-separable Phrasal Verbs
The object can sometimes go between the words of the verb. If the verb can be separated, it must be separated when you use a pronoun.
Together with noun Separated with noun Separated with pronoun
Turn on the stove. Turn the stove on. Turn it on. Turn on it
Pick up my son. Pick my son up. Pick him up. Pick up him
Some phrasal verbs cannot be separated. The noun or pronoun goes after the verb.
Break up with my girlfriend. Break up with her.
Run over a squirrel Run over it.
Use Gerund After Prepositions
If you have another verb after a phrasal verb, it will be in ING form.
I put off doing my homework until Sunday night.
I look forward to seeing you again.
I gave up trying to do everything right all the time.
Read the definitions below, then match opposites at right
back up – go to the back, reverse
break up with – stop a romantic relationship
clean up – clear a mess
come to – regain consciousness
dry out – become dry after being wet
get in – enter
get off – stop work, come down from a chair/ladder
get on – climb onto a chair or ladder
get out (of) – leave a car, avoid doing something
get up – rise from a bed or chair
give up – stop doing something (out of frustration)
go ahead – move forward, keep talking
go out with – see someone romantically
hand back – return papers to students
hand in – give papers to a teacher
hold on – keep in your hand, don’t release
lay down – go flat on a bed or table
let go – release something that was in your hand
mess up – disorganize, make dirty
pass out – lose consciousness
put away – put in the place it belongs – it’s proper place
put in – insert
put on – get dressed, add clothing
sit down – lower yourself onto a chair or the floor
slow down – go more slowly
soak through – get completely wet
speed up – go faster
stand up – rise to your feet
take off – remove clothing, airplane leaves the ground
take out – remove from inside a house or pocket
take up – start a new hobby
turn off – stop a machine
turn on – start a machine
Write the opposite phrasal verbs below:
|pass out come to||hand back|
|turn on||put away|
|go out with||stand up|
|slow down||put on|
|soak through||take out|
|hold on||turn off|
|take up||get off|
|mess up||get in|
|take off||speed up|
|get out of||clean up|
|put in||dry out|
|back up||get up|
|hand in||let go|
|take out||go ahead|
|sit down||give up|
|lay down||break up with|
|get on||ü come to|
- Basic sentence S-V-O-PP-T
I put milk in my coffee yesterday
S V O PP T
My sister and I learned to cook rice and beans by our mother’s side in the 1960s
S V O PP T
- Questions WH words-Auxiliary-Subject Verb everything else (O-PP-T)
When did you see her?
Who do you live with?
Do you like walking on the beach?
Will you be here on Tuesday?
— — Who broke that cup?
(note: the question IS the subject)
- Negatives S-Aux-V-O-PP-T
She doesn’t eat meat.
They aren’t working today.
- Adverbs of frequency Subject-Aux- Adverb of Frequency -MainVerb- everything else
I often go to sleep on the couch (before the main verb)
She doesn’t usually run with me (after the first auxiliary)
They will always be thinking of you (after the first auxiliary)
We are never alone. (“be” acts like an auxiliary – even if it’s the only verb)
- Adverbs of manner S – V –O – Adverb of Manner – PP – T
She drives her car slowly to work in the morning.
He speaks politely to his grandmother.
He does his homework too quickly.
- Adjectives (single words – before the noun) Article-Adjective-Noun
The lazy dog sleeps on the warm porch.
The big angry boss yelled at his terrified trembling employees.
- Adjective Phrases (after noun) Article-Noun-Adjective Phrase
The girl in the corner has a book with a blue cover.
- Indirect objects S-V-IO-DO-PP-T (IO=indirect object, DO=direct object)
She gave him the money for his rent today.
(She gave the money for his rent to him today.)
They told her the story of the accident.
(They told the story of the accident to her.)
- Phrasal Verbs Verb-“Particle”-Object or Verb-Object-“Particle”
She takes off her shoes after work every day.
She takes her shoes off after work every day.
She takes them off
She takes off them. (If the verb is separable, the pronoun must go in the middle)
INTRODUCTION TO CLAUSES
A clause is any group of words that includes a subject and verb.
Many sentences have more than one clause.
We need to do the dishes before we can go out.
This one sentence has two clauses. Two subject-verb sets. One of the two must have a conjunction word. In this case, BEFORE we can go out. This is a time clause.
They do their homework after class
They do their homework after they go home.
“After class” is a prepositional phrase. There is no subject-verb set, so there is no clause.
“After they go home” is a time clause. It has a subject and verb in it.
|Part of Speech||Word||Clause|
|Adverb||tomorrow||when we get home|
|Adjective||heavy||that is too heavy to lift|
|Noun||the post office||where she went today|
Words: often, slowly, tomorrow
Clauses: when we get home, because she didn’t like it, if you tell me
Word order – adverb clauses can go first or last. Use a comma only if they go first.
Because she was late, she missed the quiz.
She missed the quiz because she was late.
Words: big, red, beautiful
Clauses: that I bought yesterday, which he didn’t know, who told you
Word order – adjective words go before a noun. Adjective clauses go directly after a noun.
She has a heavy box.
She has a box that is too heavy to lift
Words: pencil, teacher, cup
Clauses: where she went, how she got there
Word order – A noun clause is the subject or object of the sentence or the object of a preposition.
What she said wasn’t true.
I don’t know where she went.
They worry about who they should trust
Progressive means an action is in progress at that time. It is also called continuous. It is not a one-time event, but a continued action. Progressive can be past, present or future. You have to identify the time when the action is in progress. You can only use progressive with action verbs.
Form: BE + ING( was/were+ing, am/is/are+ing, will be+ing)
Meaning: in progress at that time
Past progressive=in progress at that past time.
I was watching TV while my son was doing his homework
_____________________________ at 9:00am this morning.
Present progressive=in progress now.
We are reading about grammar.
_____________________________ at this moment.
Future progressive=in progress at that future time
The kids will be playing soccer at 2:00 on Saturday.
_____________________________ when he gets home.
You can identify the time with a clause (when/while) or a time word (4:00pm)
Perfect tenses mean something happened or was true before something else. It doesn’t have to be an action.
Form: HAVE + PAST PARTICIPLE
Meaning: up to that time
Past perfect = before a past time
We had already finished eating when they got home.
____________________________before I came to the US
Present perfect = up to now (maybe not finished)
My neighbors have lived there for 10 years.
Future perfect=before/up to a future time
I will have finished my homework by the time I go to bed.
____________________________before I graduate
You can identify the time with a clause or prepositional phrase.
noncount (what it’s made of)
|Languages and collective/mass nouns||Gerund nouns, sports and school subjects||Gasses and liquids||Many foods, especially grains, powders, meats|
no plural is
|abstract nouns possible||some abstract have||nouns also
|These are only plural if you mean types of…|
|singular or plural, “a” or “s”||a book
|no singular, no plural, no “a”||beef
|How many? Not many.||How many kids?
Not many applies.
|How much? Not much.||How much bread?
Not much coffee.
|More, fewer||More cookies.
|More, less||More money.
|Few, a few||Few problems.
A few friends.
|Little, a little||Little trouble.
A little homework.
|container with plural||A bag of oranges.
A jar of olives.
|container with no plural||A bag of sugar.
A jar of mayonaise.
|Any or Some with plural||I have some mangoes.
I don’t have any figs.
|Any or some with no plural||I have some furniture.
I don’t have any gas.
|Use singular or plural verb||The tree is big.
The cars go fast.
|Use singular verb (‘s’ form in present)||The air is polluted.
The meat cooks slowly.
- Modals are not verbs, but auxiliaries. They must be followed by verbs.
- The verb after a modal is always in base form.
Modal and Functions Sample Sentences
Will (future) I will stay home tomorrow.
Be going to (future) I’m going to stay home tomorrow.
Was going to (past plan) I was going to call you, but I lost your number.
Can (ability) I can play the guitar.
Be able to (ability) I’m able to play the guitar.
Could (past ability) I could read when I was 5 years old.
May (possible-now or future) It may rain tomorrow.
Could (possible-now or future) We could have pizza at home or we could go out.
Might (possible-now or future) I might go to Hawaii on my next vacation.
Can (always possible) It can get really hot in the desert.
May have (past possible) He may have been there, but I didn’t see him.
Could have (past possible) I could have gone to the party if I’d know about it.
Might have (past possible) She might have told me before, I don’t remember.
May (permission) You may go now.
Can (permission) Can I go to the bathroom?
Could (permission) Could I open the window?
May (request) May I have another donut, please?
Can (request) Can you pass the salt?
Would (request) Would you close the door, please?
Must (requirement) You must be in class on time.
Have to (required) I have to be home by 2pm.
Had to (past requirement) I had to get up very early this morning.
Should (advice) I should eat more vegetables.
Ought to (advice) You ought to see a doctor about that!
Had better (strong advice) You had better study more, or you won’t pass!
Should have (regret) I should have told you earlier.
Shouldn’t have (regret) I shouldn’t have eaten to much!
Would (past habit-action only) When I was young, we would play in the park until 5pm.
Used to (past habit/for a while in the past) I used to live in Berkeley.
Must (Probably) I heard a knock. There must be someone at the door.
Must have (past probably) You must have been tired after working so hard!
Would (unreal/potential) If I had money, I would go to Europe.
BASE FORM / PAST PARTICIPLE
be was/were been
beat beat beaten
become became become
begin began begun
bend bent bent
bite bit bitten
blow blew blown
break broke broken
bring brought brought
broadcast broadcast broadcast
build built built
buy bought bought
catch caught caught
choose chose chosen
come came come
cost cost cost
cut cut cut
dig dug dug
do did done
draw drew drawn
drink drank drunk
drive drove driven
eat ate eaten
fall fell fallen
feed fed fed
feel felt felt
fight fought fought
find found found
fit fit fit
fly flew flown
forbid forbade forbidden
forget forgot forgotten
forgive forgave forgiven
freeze froze frozen
get got gotten
BASE FORM / PAST PARTICIPLE
give gave given
go went gone
grow grew grown
hang hung hung
have had had
hear heard heard
hide hid hidden
hit hit hit
hold held held
hurt hurt hurt
keep kept kept
know knew known
lay laid laid
lead led led
leave left left
lend lent lent
let let let
lie (bed) lay lain
light lit lit/lighted
lose lost lost
make made made
mean meant meant
meet met met
pay paid paid
put put put
quit quit quit
read read read
ride rode ridden
ring rang rung
rise rose risen
run ran run
say said said
see saw seen
sell sold sold
send sent sent
set set set
BASE FORM / PAST PARTICIPLE
sew sewed sewn
shine shined/shone shined/shone
shake shook shaken
shoot shot shot
show showed shown
shut shut shut
sing sang sung
sit sat sat
sleep slept slept
slide slid slid
speak spoke spoken
spend spent spent
spin spun spun
spread spread spread
stand stood stood
steal stole stolen
stick stuck stuck
swear swore sworn
sweep swept swept
swim swam swum
take took taken
teach taught taught
tear tore torn
tell told told
think thought thought
throw threw thrown
understand understood understood
upset upset upset
wake waked/woke waked/woken
wear wore worn
win won won
write wrote written