Wednesday, November 2, 2011

GRAMMAR: Auxiliary Verbs

An auxiliary verb is a verb such as have, can, or will, etc. that accompanies the main verb in a clause and helps to make distinctions in mood, voice, aspect, and tense. Also known as "helping verbs". They signal a change in tense or a change in voice. 

Examples of the AUXILIARY VERBS are listed below, plus examples of the auxiliary + main verb: 
The jury has rendered a verdict.
The defendants have heard the sentence.
The satellite is boosting the signal.
They are receiving it in Hawaii.
He can operate in the morning.
The patient could come home in a week.
The flight should land in New Jersey.
We would like to arrive in New York.
I do want to win.
I did practice all week.
I will tell them to take the furniture away.
Shall we buy the stuffed moose?
They must report the faulty switch.
She ought to call the head office. 

Monday, August 29, 2011

GRAMMAR: Verb Tenses

VERB TENSES allow us to talk about time, to place an action or state of being in the past, present or future. In English, there are six basic tenses: present, past, future, present perfect, past perfect, future perfect. In addition, the progressive and conditional forms are also used for special functions.

1. Present Tense: is used to express an action or to state a fact that is occuring at the present time.
2. Past Tense: is used to express an action or to help make a statement about something that occurred in the past and has not continued into the present.
3. Future Tense: is used to express an action or to help make a statement about something that will occur in the future.

1. Example: I live here. / I am living here. (progressive) /   I can live here. (conditional)
2. Example: I lived here. / I was living there. (progressive)
3. Example: I will live there. / I will be living there. (progressive) / I can be living there. (conditional)

PERFECT TENSES describe actions or states of being that happened at one time but are seen in relation to another time.

4. Present Perfect Tense: is used to express an action or to help make a statement about something occurring at an indefinite time in the past or something that has occurred in the past and continues into the present.
5. Past Perfect Tense: is used to express an action or to help make a statement about something completed in the past before some other past action or event.
6. Future Perfect Tense: is used to express an action or to help make a statement about something that will be completed in the future before some other future action or event.

4. Example: I have lived here for a long time. / I have been living here... (progressive) / I could have been living... (conditional)
5. Example: After I had lived here for a long time. / After I had been living... (progressive)
6. Example: By this October, I will have lived here for six months. / I will have been living... (progressive)

Sunday, August 28, 2011


Verbs are words or groups of words that express action or a state of being or condition. They provide the power or the drive for the sentences.
Example: He is walking to work. (action)
Example: She seems happy today. (state of being)
Example: The car handles well. (condition)
BASIC VERB FORMS - A few verb forms are the basis for all verb tenses and phrases. These forms are as follows:

1. Base/Simple Form: the base form of a verb is the simplest form, without a special ending.
2. Infinitive: an infinitive is to + the verb.
3. Past Tense: a verb tense that expresses actions or states in the past
4. Past Participle: the form of a verb, typically ending in -ed in English, that is used in forming perfect and passive tenses and sometimes as an adjective
5. Present Participle: the form of a verb, ending in -ing in English, which is used in forming continuous tenses
6. Gerund: a form that is derived from a verb but that functions as a noun, in English ending in -ing

1. Example:Children play in the park.
2. Example: Tell them to play here.
3. Example: They played all day yesterday
4. Example: He has played too long.
5. Example: I am playing with her today.
6. Example: Playing is children's work.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

GRAMMAR: Pronouns

Pronouns take the place of one or more nouns or a group of words in a sentence. Like nouns, they can be used to refer to a person, place, or a thing.
Pronouns are classified as personal, intensive/reflexive, indefinite, possessive, relative, interrogative, and demonstrative.

Personal Pronouns serve as the subject of a sentence, the object of a verb or preposition, to show possession, for emphasis (called intensive), or to refer action back to the subject (called reflexive).

Example of Subject: She is simply too good to be true.
Example of Object: Tell him that the bird died. (object of verb) and Break the news to him gently. (object of a preposition)
Example of Possessive: Your house is a landmark.
Example of Intensive: The quarterback himself changed the call. (the pronoun himself emphasizes the subject quarterback)
Example of Reflexive: Jane taught herself to use the computer. (the pronoun herself refers the action back to the subject)

Indefinitive Pronouns refer to unspecified people or things.
Ex: all, both, each, everyone, most, none, some, few, many, etc.
Possesive Pronouns, unlike possessive nouns, never take an apostrophe.
Ex: my/mine, our/ours, your/yours, his/her/hers/its, their/theirs, etc.
Relative Pronouns can be used to avoid repeating the noun within a sentence.
Ex: who, whom, whose, which, of which, that
Interrogative Pronouns that introduce questions.
Ex: who, whom, whose, what, which
Demonstrative Pronouns generally indicate nearness to or distance from the speaker, either literally or symbolically.
Ex: this, that, these, those

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


A noun refers to a person, place, or thing (objects, ideas, or events).
There are three basic types of nouns: Proper, Common, and Collective Nouns.
Proper nouns are capitalized and name specific persons, places or things.
Common nouns identify general categories and are not capitalized, not even when used in conjunction with proper nouns.
Collective nouns refer to a group of people, animals, objects or other units.

Examples of Proper Nouns: Bakers College, General Mills, Jane Thurgood, etc.
Examples of Common Nouns: university, company, woman, cat, ship, etc.
Examples of Collective Nouns: trustees, management, board of directors, litter, fleet, etc.