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vocabulary

Can (Modals)

Average: 3.6 (14 votes)

The modal 'can' is a commonly used modal verb in English. It is used to express; ability, opportunity, a request, to grant permission, to show possibility or impossibility. It is this large amount of functions and the fact that ‘can’ is replaced by other modals when it is used to express future or past time that often lead to certain errors.

Here are some examples of 'can':

So and Such

Average: 4.4 (22 votes)

So + adjective

'So' when used with an adjective, shows extreme situations. This form is used mostly in speech:
The music is so loud! Why don’t they turn it down?
The hotel was so good. It was worth every cent.

Will and Going to

Average: 3.8 (26 votes)

Future Simple 'will + base form' and Going to

Expressing the future with 'will' or 'going to'

These two different forms for expressing future time can be used interchangeably sometimes. However they often express two very different meanings. It needs practice to understand the differences. Both 'will' and ‘going to’ refer to a specific time in the future.

Will – 'will + base form of verb'

You will see him later.
Will you see him later?
You will not see him later.

Used to – Would (always)

Average: 3.8 (27 votes)

Used to + verb describes a past situation that is no longer true
I used to go scuba diving.
It is best to avoid using ‘used to’ in negative forms or questions although some native speakers do this in informal situations. It is better to use the Past Simple in those situations.

How to use Say, Tell and Ask

Average: 3.6 (58 votes)

What's the difference between say, tell and ask?

Say

We say: hello and goodbye, please and thank you, happy birthday and congratulations.

Say hello to your sister for me.
We said goodbye at the airport.
Did you say thank you to Mrs Anderson?

We use say to ask about language:
How do you say 'car' in Portuguese? 'Carro'.

How to make sentences using these words. One word from each column in one sentence.

Column 1 Column 2 Column 3
nebulous mediocre trivia
perfunctory chagrin gelid
machination veneration audacity
gregarious accolade jargon
hirsute denizen flamboyant
harangue ghastly placid
lionize histrionics naive
devious auspicious facetious

Common Irregular Verbs List

Average: 3.5 (27 votes)

Here is a list of the most common irregular verbs. This list is by no means the complete list of irregular verbs in English but the most regularly used.

How to talk about future situations

Average: 3.4 (30 votes)

Future Real Conditional

The future real conditional describes what the speaker will do in a specific situation in the future. Although we do not know what will happen in the future the future real conditional is called 'real' because it refers to a possible action that could occur.

Lesson by Tristan, teacher at EC Malta English school

List: Verbs that take a gerund or an infinitive

Average: 3 (18 votes)

Verbs that take a gerund or an infinitive with different meanings:

Begin

When 'begin' is used in non-continuous tenses, you can use a gerund or an infinitive: She began singing. She began to sing.
When 'begin' is used in continuous tenses, an infinitive is used:
She is beginning to sing.

Advanced Level: Present Conditionals

Average: 4.7 (12 votes)

There are two kinds of conditional sentences: real and unreal. Real Conditional describes real-life situations. Unreal Conditional describes unreal, imaginary situations. Although the various conditional forms might seem quite abstract at first, they are actually some of the most useful structures in English and are commonly included in daily conversations.

Lesson by Tristan, teacher at EC Malta English school