domingo, 17 de febrero de 2019


1.      GERUNDS:
a)      Gerunds are the verb forms we need to use after certain verbs and expressions:
-          I don’t mind walking to school in the morning. I find it invigorating.
-          I can’t stand waiting for people who don’t turn up at the arranged time.
-          I was very tired, so I stopped dancing and went home.

b)      Expressions with the –ing form can also be used as subjects of sentences or as complements after the verb TO BE:
-          Swimming can help you to be fit.
-          My favourite pastime is cycling.
In these cases, a TO-INFINITIVE can also be used (To swim can help you to be fit, my favourite pastime is to cycle), but in informal English it is less natural than the -ING form.
c)       After prepositions, we always need to use an –ing form, and that includes phrasal verbs:
-          This pan is for baking cakes.
-          When she retired, she took up knitting, but she soon got fed up with it, gave it up and carried on trekking.
-          I look forward to hearing from you soon.

a)      In other occasions, it is the TO-Infinitive the verb form we need to use after certain verbs and expressions:
-          I have decided to send my son to an English boarding school next year.
-          I can’t afford to go on a cruise.
b)      As the complement of an adjective:
-          That’s quite easy to do.
-          I find it difficult to understand.
c)       As the complement of a noun:
-          You have the right to remain silent.
d)      To express PURPOSE:
-          Jack is saving money to go on holidays.
-          We had been driving for two hours, so we stopped to have a coffee.
e)      After question words:
-          I don’t know what to say or where to go. BUT “Why pay more?”
f)        As subject or complement of a sentence, but, as mentioned above, it is more unusual, especially in informal contexts.
-          To study hard is a must in any degree.
-          The main idea is to draw a plan of the city centre.

a)      After auxiliaries and modal verbs. Remember that we teachers go mad when we hear our students say something like “***I must to do…”
-          She could play the piano when she was 9.
-          I don’t like lamb.
b)      After some expressions like ‘had better’ or ‘would rather’:
-          You’d better study now and go out later.
-          I’d rather eat out at the weekend. On weekdays I’m too busy to enjoy it.
c)       After ‘make’ and ‘let’ + object:
-          That song makes me dance.
-          His father doesn’t let him stay up after midnight.
But MAKE takes the infinitive with TO in the passive voice:
-          Philip was made to wear a uniform at school.
And the meaning of LET in the passive is expressed with ALLOW + TO-infinitive:
-          He wasn’t allowed to go to the disco until he was 16.


These verbs are usually used followed by the gerund in British English, and by the To-infinitive in American English. However, in British English, we tend to use the gerund to talk generally and the infinitive to talk specifically:
-   I like going shopping.
-   I like to go shopping for food first thing on Saturday mornings.
When these verbs are used with WOULD, they are always followed by To+infinitive:
-   I would prefer to travel with you

a)             Some verbs can be followed either by the gerund or the infinitive without difference in meaning, the most common cases being start, continue and begin:
       Patrick began dancing / began to dance when he was only 6.
b)             Other verbs can be followed either by the gerund or the to-infinitive with a change of meaning:
-                 Remember:
o  I remember going to school on foot since I was 6 = I remember a past action.
o  Remember to buy some bread tomorrow morning = Remember something for the future
-                 Forget:
o  I’ll never forget going to Iguazú = I did something which I won’t forget. This use is typically negative. Also
o  I had forgotten reading that novel = I had read it but I had forgotten it.
o  Don’t forget to go to the supermarket. We have run out of bread and milk. = Don’t forget to carry out a future action.

-                 Try:
o  Try to be on time. = make an effort to arrive on time.
o  If you feel so distressed, try doing yoga. = to see if it works.
-                 Need:
o  I need to tidy my bedroom. = Active meaning
o  My room needs tidying. = My room needs to be tidied. = Passive meaning.

- Malcolm MANN and Steve TAYLORE-KNOWLES (2008): Destination B2 Grammar & Vocabulary with answer key, Oxford, Macmillan.
- Mark FOLEY and Diane HALL (2012): My Grammar Lab Intermediate B1/B2, Harlow, Pearson Longman.
- Michael SWAM (2005): Practical English Usage, Third Edition Fully Revised, Oxford, Oxford University Press.

lunes, 24 de diciembre de 2018

Enjoy Christmas with the Little Drummer Boy

I wish you a very Merry Christmas.
To help enjoyment, what about a traditional Christmas carol played by the Australian rock band FOR KING AND COUNTRY?

Here are the lyrics, composed in 1958 by Katherine K. Davis, Henry Onorati and Harry Simeone.

Little Drummer Boy: Lyrics

Come they told me, pa rum pum pum pum
A new born King to see, pa rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring, pa rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King, pa rum pum pum pum,
rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,

So to honor Him, pa rum pum pum pum,
When we come.

Little Baby, pa rum pum pum pum
I am a poor boy too, pa rum pum pum pum
I have no gift to bring, pa rum pum pum pum
That's fit to give the King, pa rum pum pum pum,
rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,

Shall I play for you, pa rum pum pum pum,
On my drum?

Mary nodded, pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my best for Him, pa rum pum pum pum,
rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,

Then He smiled at me, pa rum pum pum pum 

Me and my drum.

viernes, 16 de marzo de 2018

Tomorrow's St Patrick's Day!!

Author: freedesignfileLicence: Creative commons attribution license

In this link you can find idioms related to this day in honour of the Patron Saint of Ireland.