Friday, November 12, 2010

Embedded/Included Questions

"The Guitar Player" Jan Vermeer, 1672
An embedded or included question is always a noun clause. It is the object of the verb, as in the following sentence: I don't know where the supermarket is. "where the supermarket is" is a noun clause, the object of the verb "know". The noun clause must always be in the word order: subject+verb. So, a noun clause can never be in the form of a question.

If it is an information question, (when, what, where, why, whose, which, how much, how many, etc.), the noun clause begins with the question word.

If it is a yes/no question, such as "Is this your book?" The noun clause begins with "if" or "whether".





Exercise: Change the following questions to noun clauses after the appropriate main clauses supplied.

1. When does the train arrive?
Do you know

2. Was Sam in San Francisco last year?
I don't know

3. Where's your brother going to live next year?
I'm not exactly sure

4. What is the teacher's name?
Can you tell me

5. Does this school have a cafeteria?
Could you please tell me

6. When did the new factory open?
Do you remember

7. Where can I find a good shoe store?
Do you happen to know

8. How far is Oregon from here?
I'd like to find out

9. What time is it?
Could you please tell me

10. Are there any new employees this week?
I really can't tell you

11. How much does this computer cost?
Do you know

12. Where are the restrooms in this building?
Could you please tell me

13. When did the First World War begin?
Do you happen to know

14. How long has Jack been here?
I'm really not sure

15. How did she break her leg?
Poor Maria! Do you happen to know

16. What kind of guitar is that lady playing?
I don't have any idea

17. What did she say?
I didn't hear

18. What was the answer?
She remembered

19. What movie did we see yesterday?
I don't recall

20. What did you explain in class?
I'm trying to remember


The following is an excellent video from Learning American English. It has a good explanation of the Noun Clause.




Thursday, November 4, 2010

Reviewing the Comparative and Superlative.

"Fishbone Forest" Max Ernst, 1927
















1. My brother is my father. In fact, my brother is person in our family.

2. Spanish is Russian. In fact, Spanish is one of languages in the world.

3. Margaret is her neighbor. Some people say she's woman in our neighborhood.

4. Martha Brothers coffee is Starbucks. Some people think Martha Brothers coffee is coffee in San Francisco.

5. California's economy is Nevada's economy. Many people agree that California's economy is one of economies in the United States.

6. Arnold Schwarzenegger isn't Jerry Brown, however he's a lot Jerry Brown. Arnold Schwarzenegger used to be one of men in the world before he became an actor.

7. Your Uncle George is your Aunt Wilma. I think he's person in our family.

8. Your younger brother is his roommate. He's probably person in the dormitory.

9. Mildred is Evelyn. Mildred's music teacher think she's musician in the school.

10. Your grandfather is mine. Everybody says he's person in our community.

11, That dog is a lot our cat. That dog is probably animal on our block.

12. Yes, I know this radio isn't very , but unfortunately, we don't have a . This radio is one in the store.

13. Linda is person I know. In my opinion, she much her sister.

14. Our store is one in town. It's the stores in most cities.

15. The math problem our teacher gave us yesterday is one we've had all semester. It's much the one he gave us last week.

16. San Francisco is city in The United States. That's why I live here. It's certainly Los Angeles.

17. This cereal has too sugar. I'm looking for cereal that has sugar. Can you recommend one?

18. (answer to 17.) I think Uncle Sam is a very cereal. It has sugar of any cereal I know.

19. "Mad Men" is a TV series about people in advertising in the 1960's. It's TV series I've seen in a long time. It's much many other TV series.

20. The location of our campus is before. This location is the one for most of our students.

21. Today, I'm I was yesterday. But tomorrow will be day I'll have this week.

22. Mount Everest is mountain in the world. No mountain in California is Mount Everest.

23. Historians say that Hitler was Mussolini. He was one of dictators the world has ever seen.

24, Her English was the teacher's. She was English student in the class.

25. Samuel lives in Sacramento. He lives from our school of all our students. Nobody lives he does from school.

26. day of my life was when my father died. I was about it, but my brother was I was.

27. Alaska has weather of any of the states. Also, Oregon's weather is California's weather.

28. New York is certainly San Francisco. In fact, New York is one of cities in the world.

29. Tokyo is much San Francisco. Tokyo, with its huge population, is one of cities in the world.

30. Angela always wears colorful clothes. Her clothes are any of her classmates' clothes. Some students think hers are clothes in the school.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Comparative Practice. Write the correct word.
Check your answer by looking at the
drop down menu.

"Snow Covered Road" Claude Monet, 1867














1. I eat too many hamburgers. I should eat food. (healthy)

2. He should study harder and he should get grades in school. (good)

3. Most dogs are much than cats. (friendly)

4. I disagree. My cat is as as your dog. (friendly)

5. My parents say I should wear clothes. (nice)

6. Used cars are definitely new cars. (cheap)

7. There is one problem with used cars. They aren't as new ones. (reliable)

8. In the winter, New York is certainly San Francisco. (cold)

9. But, in the summer, I feel that San Francisco isn't New York. (warm)

10. My cousin is than my uncle. (energetic)

11. My aunts than my parents. (generous)

12. Our neighbor's furniture is more our furniture.(comfortable)

13. You should vote for Millie Parker. She's than Bob Green. (honest)

14. Maria is Pedro. (tall)

15. Pedro isn't Maria. (tall)

16. Uncle Edward is Uncle Albert. (intelligent)

17. However, Uncle Edward as Uncle Albert. (rich)

18. Raw vegetables than cooked vegetables. (delicious)

19. Judy's pet bird is Sally's pet bird. (beautiful)

20. My father's feet are mine. (large)

21. Today is hot. Yesterday was also hot. Today is yesterday. (hot)

22. Henry's new girlfriend is his ex-wife. (thin)

23. But, in my opinion, his new girlfriend isn't as his ex-wife. (interesting)

24. My brother's suitcase is mine. (light)

25. My suitcase is a lot his. (heavy)

26. Your pet crocodile is he was before. What have you been feeding him? (fat)

27. You live in San Francisco, but I live in Daly City. I live you from school. (far)

28. Steve can't come to school today. His cold is it was yesterday. (bad)

29. We cleaned our apartment today. Yesterday, our apartment was . (dirty)

30. Try Mario's Restaurant. It's as Pierre's Restaurant. (fancy)

31. Also, the food at Mario's Restaurant isn't as the food at Pierre's Restaurant.(expensive)

32. I'm glad Ted moved next door. He's a lot Peter, who used to live there. (quiet)

33. My computer is Jennifer's computer. (powerful)

35. I think you'll like my new watch. It's much my old one. (accurate)

36. Peggy isn't as talented as Ginger. You're right. Peggy is than Ginger. (talented)

37. This car is cheaper than that one. You're right. This car is than that one. (expensive)

38. There's an American saying that goes, "The grass next door is always mine." (green)

39. There's a famous saying that goes, "It is to have tried and failed than not to have tried at all." (good)

40. Toronto isn't as Mexico City. (noisy)

41. You're right. Mexico City is Toronto. (noisy)

42. Roger's apartment is Bill's apartment, but it isn't as nice. (big)

43. I think we should hire Mrs. Wilson. She's than Mr. Brown.(polite)

44. I don't know. Mrs. Wilson isn't as Ms. Jackson. We should hire Ms. Jackson. (capable)

45. Ms. Jackson is definitely than Mrs. Wilson. Don't you agree? (talkative)

46. These ties are than the ties I usually buy. (attractive)

47. I like this shampoo. It makes my hair than it was before. (soft, shiny)

48. I like this novel. It's that author's last novel. (exciting)

49. Starbuck's coffee isn't Martha and Brothers coffee. (good)

50. This exercise is longer and the other exercises. (difficult)





Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Choose the Correct Auxiliary




















This exercise should be done after the lesson on "Using Second Verbs".

1. I understand you. Please, speak slower.

2. He work overtime this Friday.

3. They to leave class early today.

4. You bring a notebook to class every day.

5. Sam to forget his ex girlfriend and find someone new.

6. You take a credit course if you wanted to.

7. They travel more if they had time.

8. I always driving downtown because the traffic is heavy.

9. We're to eat dinner around 7:00 pm tonight.

10. I to meet my uncle at the airport this afternoon.

11. Timmy to play baseball in the back yard.

12. Steve cook spaghetti for dinner tonight. He's not sure.

13. I to fix the washing machine. It's broken.

14. Yan Ching speak both Mandarin and Cantonese.

15. Maria isn't home right now. I take a message?

16. I don't to disturb you, but I really need your help.

17. We're to listen to music tonight.

18. You attend class if you're not feeling well.

19. You worked 12 hours today? You be tired.

20. My boss probably change my schedule next week.

21. I return my library books today. They're overdue.

22. You wear your sweater. It's very cold outside.

23. Steven isn't wearing his raincoat. It not be raining very hard.

24. I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow morning. I be late for work.

25. My sister really watching science fiction movies.

26. you tell me how to get to Mission Campus from here?

27. Our dinner guests be here in about a half hour.

28. The doctor says I eat as much ice cream as I did before.

29. We're afraid we have a terrible time at Jack's party.

30. I give my brother a tie because I gave him one last year.

31. Our family to go to the beach every summer.

32. Put on your safety helmet or you hurt your head.

33. My son has a fever. I'm afraid he have the flu.

34. Our students don't to wear a uniform when they attend our classes.

35. You to go to bed early so you'll have energy tomorrow.



Sunday, August 15, 2010

Using Second Verbs: Rules and an Exercise

"Adoration of the Magi" Fra Angelico, 1433

Infinitive= to+verb: to go, to make, to play
Base Form= verb with no change: go, make, play
Gerund= verb+ing: going, making, playing
Auxiliary= First Verb or Helping Verb



Every language has a powerful motor. That motor is the power of verb combination. If you know how verbs combine, you find that you can converse more easily and more accurately. Listen to yourself speak in your own language, and you'll very often find that you're combining verbs. In English, there are three kinds of second verbs: Base Form, Infinitive, and Gerund. Which one you use depends on the first verb. If you use a modal auxiliary, the second verb will always be the Base Form. If you use auxiliaries:

have, going, want, need, decide, ought, able

your second verb will be the infinitive. If you use auxiliary verbs:

keep on, enjoy, feel like, avoid, consider, finish, have trouble

the second verb will be the gerund. There are some verbs that are followed by either the gerund or the infinitive such as

prefer, start, try, continue, hate, like, begin



Exercise: Choose the correct form of the second verb.

1. Steve must away all the tools now. (put)

2. The students can't this complicated lesson. (understand)

3. Have you ever considered in a computer course? (enroll)

4. We would in Europe if we had more time and money. (travel)

5. I don't want out these old letters. (throw)

6. They're going married in October. (get)

7. We should our typing skills so we can write online exercises more easily. (improve)

8. I don't like long meetings. (attend)

9. You ought your friends if they're in trouble. (help)

10. We need the driver's manual for the test. (learn)

11. Tom is late. He might stuck in traffic. (be)

12. I wasn't able the problem to the employer clearly enough. (explain)

13. I might my homework before the party begins. (finish)

14. I sometimes have trouble a parking place. (find)

15. He likes coffee in the morning. (drink)

16. Mary could 5 miles every day when she was younger.(run)

17. We'll City College next semester. (attend)

18. I won't be able to the party with you because I have too much homework.(go)

19. Dave has his brother after school today. (pick up)

20. You know, you ought a larger notebook. It's better for writing. (buy)

21. Steve should a jacket today because it's very cold out.(wear)

22. Andy wants a job in San Francisco because he likes that city. (find)

23. We don't want away but our company has changed its location. (move)

24. The students will a lot of grammar this semester. (study)

25. We enjoy to stories and articles on the internet. (read, listen)

26. We try as much as we can about the sounds of English. (learn)

27. They avoid on the freeway during rush hour. There are too many cars on the road. (drive)

28. I'd like my bicycle in the country this Saturday. (ride)

29. Sylvia and Roger are going married after they graduate from college. (get)

30. They decided to Hawaii for their honeymoon. (travel)

31. I prefer rather than taking the bus. (walk)

32. The police car began my car yesterday. I didn't know what I was doing wrong. (follow)



Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Participial Adjective Endings: "ed" or "ing" ?

"Two Cranes by a Pine Tree" Maruyama Okyo, 18th Century

It's confusing! What's confusing? This grammar is confusing. How does it make you feel? I feel confused.

The "ing" ending for an adjective describes the person, or thing that causes a feeling or reaction. Examples: The trip was exciting. The lecture was interesting. The comedian was entertaining and amusing.

The "ed" ending describes a subjective response. It tells how I feel about the thing or person. Examples: I was annoyed when I had to wait in line. I was excited about the new class. I'm interested in the new book. I'm fascinated by Japanese art.

In the following exercises, use the correct form of the adjective. Click the drop down menu for the correct answer.


1. I saw a very exhibit of Japanese painting yesterday.

2. The children were very by the clowns at the circus.

3. I couldn't stand the movie last night. It was one of the most movies I've ever seen.

4. Aren't those cranes ? They're also graceful and beautiful.

5. Tom was because the application form was difficult to read.

6. Jose isn't with his progress in English this semester. He wants to repeat Level Five.

7. We don't want to be because we're trying to finish our homework.

8. The acrobats performed some somersaults and balancing acts.

9. I'm very to say that I forgot your birthday.

10. The score I received on my last exam was somewhat . I thought I had done better.

11. I was this morning because I didn't sleep well last night.

12. We want to paint our house, but we can't decide what color to paint it. It's very

13. They're because they want to go to the beach but it's raining.

14. I had to take the kids out of the movie theater yesterday because the film we were watching was too .

15. That singer was so that we wanted to listen to her all evening.

16. The cars were going so fast on the freeway that they us.

17. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson are looking forward to having a holiday.

18. I was to learn that I was accepted to the University of California. I didn't think my grades were good enough.

19. I heard that Joe and Carol are getting married. Isn't that ?

20. I didn't even know they were in each other.

21. If I don't have the chance to use my computer for a while, I get restless and .

22. I'm getting very with my browser. It keeps quitting while I'm working on my blog.

23. The cranes in the picture seem very peaceful and .

24. After doing some of these exercises, are you still about when to use "ed" or "ing"?

25. Please, don't be about your English. It's natural to make mistakes when you're learning a new language.

26. I listened to the lawyers at the trail, but I didn't think their arguments were very .

27. I'm not at all that Mr. Donald Bennet is guilty of any crime.

28. The situation on the Gulf Coast is absolutely . How long will it take to clean up that oil spill?

29. Louise and Jeffery have a very house in the country. They stay there every summer.

30. The food and service at our restaurant seems to be pretty good because we have a lot of customers.




Friday, May 28, 2010

Prepostions of Place

"The Art of Conversation" Rene Magritte, 1950

Prepositions are short words that show the relationship between things. Prepositions of place in English are not difficult, but take some practice to use correctly. Here are some rules to make these place prepostions easier to use accurately:

Use "at" for an exact address. For example, "Bob lives at 342 Mission Street."
A corner is also an exact place, so say "I'll meet you at the corner of Fifth and Market." Use "at" for a place such as a restaurant, hospital, or a store. You're calling your friend who asks you where you are, and you say, "I'm at school, right now. I'll call you later."

Use "in" for cities, states, countries. "I used to live in Nicaragua. I live in the United States now." "Oh, where?" "I live in San Francisco." "My friend Jose lives in California, also." Also, "in" is appropriate for objects inside a box or a drawer.
"This is a beautifully wrapped present. What's in it, I wonder?"

Use "on" when you talk about a street without using a specific address. "Our campus is on Valencia Street." Use "on" for the location of an object that is on top of another object. "What's that on your head?" "It's my new hat. Don't you like it?" "It looks like a bird." "Where are the car keys?" "They're on the table."

Use "on" for a floor of a building. "The Language Lab is on the Third Floor."

Use "between" when a place has a place on either side of it. "The bank is between the restaurant and the school."

Use "across from" for locating a place on the other side of the street. "The gas station is across from the hotel."

Use "to" to show the direction of an action. "He's moving to Los Angeles at the end of the month."

Use "from" to show a relationship to origin. "Mario is from Mexico."

Choose the correct preposition in the following sentences. Check your answers.



1. Tom lives Sacramento, California.

2. He didn't give me his exact address, but I believe he lives B Street.

3. You can probably find him the coffee shop C Street.

4. The tallest building the world isn't New York City.

5. Our business office is the fourth floor. Our school is located 1125 Valencia Street.

6. Maria is going school Ocean Campus of City College.

7. If you don't drive faster, we'll arrive the airport late.

8. There's a bank the restaurant and the laundromat.

9. Alejandro was born Texas, but he moved California last year.

10. Fred's sister said he wasn't home, so he must be school.

11. Aren't these apples good? They're Anderson Valley. You can buy some the farmer's market 24th Street.

12. Did Ed park his car front of his house or the driveway?

13. How far is Los Angeles San Francisco? I want to drive L.A. next weekend.

14. There's a good restaurant the subway station.

15. The Smiths live West Chestnut Street the shoe store.

16. They live Spain. They plan to travel Mexico next year.

17. My plane stopped Paris and London and arrived New York five hours late.

18. I live the 7th floor 21 Oxford Street Berkeley, California.

19. There is a "no smoking" sign the wall. It means you're not allowed to smoke this building.

20. I waited for you the restaurant for a long time. When you didn't show up, I went the bookstore.

21. The world's tallest building is Dubai, United Arab Emerates. It's name is Burj Khalifa. I have an office that building the 50th Floor.

(Come back to this exercise later. I'll be adding more questions)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Grammar Index

"The Entire City" by Max Ernst, 1937















1. Basic English
Present Progressive Tense
Simple Present Tense
"Yes/No" Questions
Simple Present Tense: Conjugation Practice
Conjugation of "do"
Simple Past Tense
Future Tense with "going to"
Future Tense with "will"
Vukile's Subject-Verb Agreement Quiz: "Bee Communication"
Prepositions
The Comparative Form: "I'm shorter than my brother."
Adjective or Adverb?


2. Intermediate English
Past Progressive Tense One
Past Progressive Tense Two
Present Perfect Tense
Present Perfect with "yet" and "already"
Present Perfect, "Yes/No" questions with "recently", "lately"
Present Perfect: Answering "How long" Questions
Present Perfect: Fill the Blanks
Present Perfect Tense: Questions
Simple Past or Present Perfect?
Simple Past or Present Perfect? Blank Fill
Present Perfect Conjugation Practice
Present Perfect Progressive Tense
More Present Perfect Progressive
Past Perfect Tense
Past Perfect Tense Quiz
Present Perfect or Past Perfect?
Gerunds and Infinitives
Gerund Review
Gerund and Infinitive Quiz
Phrasal Verbs
Phrasal Verb Practice Two
Correct the Errors
The Superlative with the Third Form Participle. Includes Audio.
Making Questions
Appropriate Responses to Questions or Statements

3. High Intermediate English

Passive Voice
Passive Voice Exercises
Embedded (Included) Questions "Do you know what time it is?"
“Should” Plus Present Perfect - Past Advice
“Must” Plus Present Perfect - Logical Deduction
Modal Plus Present Perfect
Connectors - “So am I” etc.
Future, Real Conditional
Future, Real Conditional "Fill the Blanks"
Present, Unreal Conditional
Future, Real Conditional or Present, Unreal Conditional?
Past, Unreal Conditional
Tag Questions
Using Reported Speech - "She said she was tired."


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Present Perfect Progressive Tense

"Green Apples" by Paul Cezanne, 1873

The Present Perfect Progressive Tense is formed by using the subject with "have been" or "has been" plus a present participle (-ing form) of the verb.
If you're using a subject pronoun, you may use a contraction. The contractions are as follows: I've, he's, she's, it's, you've, we've, they've.

Change the following Present Progressive sentences to Present Perfect Progressive. Use the time word in the drop down menu. Click on the arrows to view the correct answer.



1. He's studying English.



2. They're reading the new books.



3. We're waiting for the doctor.



4. They're repairing that road.



5. You're learning new words.



6. The students are writing their essay.



7. It's snowing.



8. We're jogging.



9. The gardeners are planting flowers.



10. The turkey is cooking.



11. They're swimming now.



12. Roger is working at the post office.



13. Irene is playing the piano.



14. We're playing soccer together.



15. What are they doing now?



16. The doctor is giving a check up.



17. The teacher is explaining the grammar.



18. The neighbors are making noise.



19. My TV isn't working well.



20. The baby is crying.



21. The ceiling is leaking.



22. My car is making strange noises.



23. Paul and Jane are dating.



24. Officer Daniels is directing traffic.



25. The neighbor's dog is barking.









Saturday, May 15, 2010

Past Progressive Tense and Clauses.

"Puddle" M.C. Escher, 1952
















Write the main clause or time clause to complete the following sentences.

1. I was sleeping when

2. While , he tripped on the curb.

3. While , it started to rain.

4. They were watching TV when

5. I was eating lunch when

6. when the plane took off.

7. While , they saw a beautiful bird.

8. They were getting off a bus when on the sidewalk.

9. Jack hurt his wrist while

10. Rita was brushing her teeth when

11. We were waiting for the bus when

12. While , the photographers ran towards us.

13. While Mary was sleeping last night,

14. I was skiing when

15. The teacher started to cough while

16. when she heard the office phone ring.

17. when my friend called on me.

18. when the accident happened.

19 while he was playing basketball.

20. When the fire started,

21. Sonia was waiting for me when

22. When the computer suddenly shut off,

23. While my girlfriend paid for the dinner.

24. Tom and I were having coffee when

25. George was driving to work when

26. Dorothy was talking to her friend when

Past Progressive Conversation Practice, Grammartalk 9HB, Page One






Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Past Perfect and Past Progressive Review.

"The Room" by Edouard Vuillard, 1893














Jennifer's schedule yesterday:

1:00 write an English composition
2:00 study for my history exam
3:00 practice the piano
4:00 read the next chapter in the science text
5:00 memorize my poem

1. What was she doing at 2:00?



2. What had she already done?



3. What hadn't she done yet?



4. What else hadn't she done yet?



5. What else hadn't she done yet?



Brian had a very busy day at the office yesterday

9:00 send an e-mail to his supervisor
10:00 distribute the paychecks to the employees
11:00 install the new software on the computers
1:00 write a proposal for a new procedure
2:00 return three phone calls

6. What was he doing at 11:00?



7. What had he already done?



8. What else had he already done?



9. What hadn't he done yet?



10. What else hadn't he done yet?



Mr. and Mrs. Lopez had a very busy day at home yesterday

8:00 assemble a new bicycle for their son
9:00 fix the broken faucet
11:00 clean the garage
2:00 paint their living room
4:00 vacuum the carpets

11. What were they doing at ll:00?



12. What had they already done?



13. What else had they already done?



14. What hadn't they done yet?



15. What else hadn't they done yet?



Louise had a very busy day at her health club.

9:00 go to jazz dance class
10:00 ride the stationary bike
12:00 swim ten laps
3:00 lift weights
4:00 attend nutrition class

16. What was she doing at 12:00?



17. What had she already done?



18. What else had she already done?



19. What hadn't she done yet?



20. What else hadn't she done yet?