Problems with Modals (skill 18)

Sunday, 5 June 2011

 Previous Problem: Problem with past participle or present participle (skill 17)

Whenever you see a modal such as will, would, shall, should, can, could, may, might, or must, you should be sure that the verb that follows it is in its base form.

You must telling* her the truth.

The child may comes* in now.

  • In the first example, telling should be the base form tell because it follows must.
  • In the second example, comes should be the base form come because it follows may.
The following chart outlines the use of verb forms after modals.


Each of the following sentences contains a verb formed with a modal. Underline the verbs twice. Then indicate if the sentences are correct (C) or incorrect (I).

1. You should try to respond politely. (C)

2. Everyone must leaves the room immediately. (I)

  • leaves should be leave
3. I could sat on the beach for hours. (I)

  • sat should be sit
4. She will asking you many difficult questions. (I)

  • asking should be ask
5. You can look at the book, but you cannot borrow it. (C)

 6. He may lies to you because he is not very truthful. (I)

  • lies should be lie
7. He knew that he would forgot the phone number. (C)

  • forgot should be forget
8. The weatherman said that it might snowing tonight. (I)

  • snowing should be snow
 9. Perhaps we could bought a new car this year.(I)

  • bought should be buy
10. This course will satisfy the graduation requirement. (C)

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Next Skill 19: Problems with singular and plural noun


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