Aug 25th

Helping Verbs

By Jane Doe

Many sentences have verbs that are more than one word. These are called verb phrases. The auxiliary verb is the main verb that does the action. The other verbs are helping verbs that help to explain the action and the tense.


"I will jump in the water." Will indicates future tense; it is the helping verb. Jump is the auxiliary verb. 


In the following sentences, auxilary verb is bolded and the helping verb is italicized.


1. I am going to work now.

2. I have already tried the video game.

3. I  was searching for my glasses.



The most used helping verbs:



























Your Turn: 


Please post the answers in a reply to this blog.


Which word in the following sentences are helping verbs and which are auxiliary verbs?


1. I will have the tacos for dinner.

2. I was dreaming about candy and cakes.

3. I should have told you the truth.

4. I might have eaten too much.

5. I will do that later.

Mar 17th

Complement Vs. Compliment

By Jane Doe


Complement and compliment are pronounced almost identically. There is a very slight different in the sounds of the second syllables, but hardly enough to notice. In writing, you can see the spelling and, therefore, can identify easily which one it is. In speaking, you have figure out which one it is by the context of the sentence.


Words that sound the same but are spelled differently are called homophones.


Here it goes:




A compliment, with an i, is like something nice you say about someone. It's flattery.

"I like your shoes."

"Your hair looks great today."




A complement, with an e, is a full crew or a set, and it is also when something complements (goes together with, fits with) something else, it means they go well together. 

"I love this red shirt because it complements my hair."



I like to give compliments (I like to say nice things to people)

Since "I" like to give them, this compliment is with an i.  (This is pure flattery.)



We go well together as complements. (we fit well together, we go together, we work well together). Since there are no i's in this sentence, it's complement with an e. 


See if you can do it now:

1. When I am in class, my teacher (compliments/complements) my work.

2. The (compliment/complement) of sleep is warmth.

3. The man got hit by wife for (complimenting/complementing) a pretty girl.

4. This food is awesome. My (compliments/complements) to the chef.

5. The (compliment/complement) of red is green.






Mar 14th

Afraid Vs. Frightened

By Jane Doe


Afraid or Frightened?

  • You don’t use afraid before a noun:
  •           You can say a frightened animal. 
  •           You can not say  an afraid animal.


  • You can be ‘afraid of ‘something, and,
  • You can be ‘frightened of’ something:
  •            I’m afraid of heights.
  •            She’s frightened of getting old.


  • You can also say that you are ‘frightened to’
  • Or ‘afraid to’ do something:
  •            I’m afraid to speak up.
  •            People are frightened to leave home.


  • Afraid can be used to politely express regret:
  •           I'm  afraid that we don’t stock that item.
  • But don’t use ‘frightened’ to express regret.
Mar 4th

Adjectives in Comparative Sentences

By Jane Doe

Comparative sentences compare things using as or than.

Ex: I am as tall as you are.

Ex: I am taller than you.


If you are comparing with “as….as,” the form of the adjective does not change.


However, there may be changes in the adjectives when comparing using “than.”


For 1-syllable adjectives, when comparing using “than,” simply at –er to the adjective.

1 syllable adjectives: tall, mad, sweet

I am taller than he is. (comparison of my height to his)

I was madder than I thought. (comparison of how mad I am to how mad I thought I was)

The candy is sweeter than the cookies. (comparison of candy and cookies.


For 1-syllable adjectives in comparative sentences with implied information, simply add –er to the adjective.


1-syllable adjectives: kind, thin, cute

You are kinder now. (the comparison is how kind you are now compared to how kind you were before. It is implied that you are kinder now MORE THAN you were before)

The thinner book is the one you want. (the comparision is between the book that is thinner THAN and the books that are not thin; the thinner book is thinner THAN the other books)


For 2-syllable adjectives that end in –y  in comparative sentences, change the y to –ier.

2 syllable adjectives ending in –y: Happy, funny, cozy

Ex: I am happier today. The comparison is between how happy I was yesterday and how happy I am today. I am happier today (than I was yesterday).

Ex. You are funnier than everyone else. (comparison of funniness of you and everyone else)

Ex. I am cozier here than anywhere else. (comparison of coziness here and everywhere else)


All other 2-syllable adjectives or more than two syllable adjectives, use “more” without changing the adjective form.

2-syllable adjectives NOT ending in –y; 3 or more syllable adjectives: crowded, boring, majestic

Ex: The store is more crowded than I imagined.

Ex: This is more boring than anything I have ever done before.

Ex. The eagle is more majestic than the raven.


In comparison sentences, you may also use “most” or -iest if you want to imply the maximum value of the adjective; with most, like more, do not change the adjective form. –iest is only used for 2-syllable adjectives ending in –y.

I have the most adorable story to tell you.

I am the luckiest girl alive.

This is the most peaceful place.


This is not the funniest thing that ever happened to me.

Sep 2nd

Nostalgia (Poetry)

By Jane Doe
Everything is a memory in the making...
Soon my rantings too will be but solid and strong memories,
Lurking in the corners of your mind,
Ebbing nostalgia... 
Recalling every detail of important things, people and events.
Sometimes I swim in my own nostalgia,
Sometimes I drown in it....
Solid, strong memories keep my head above water,
Swimming past bursts of pain,
To float in the re-enjoyment of beautiful moments...
With you.... 
Sep 2nd


By Jane Doe

When to use PUT/SET/PLACE when talking about moving something from one location to another.

Put: verb: to change the location of something

Put is the least careful of the three verbs. Most things are put because they don't need specific care. 

  • Put that in the car. 
  • Put that away. 
  • Put it in your bag.

Set requires a little more care than "put." If you set something, then you are put it a little more carefully.

  • Set the book on the table. (Set indicates not to slam it or drop it but most likely if you did it would not damage the book)
  • Set the clothes on the bed. (Set indicates not to put them in a disorderly manner but maybe to keep them folded)

Place is a careful putting, usually onto a flat horizontal surface. place is a higher register verb than put, which is pretty lowly as verbs go. Usually if you place something, the thing you are placing is more fragile or it is important to use care to put it where you want it.

  • Place the jar on the table. (The jar is made of glass, you must be careful when putting it anywhere)
  • Place the knife in the knife holder. (If not careful, you may get cut)

Aug 21st

Verbs that Don't Change

By Jane Doe

There are some verbs that don't change form no matter which tense you are using. The only change that is made to these verbs is in the progressive tense (-ing). Below is a list with a few examples.


  • Correct: Yesterday he burst my balloon and made me sad; don't burst it again.
  • Correct: I am bursting all the bubbles.
  • Incorrect: You bursted into the room so loudly.


  • Correct: What did that cost you? Does it cost much generally? I hopt it won't cost more by the time I have enough money saved.
  • Correct: This is costing me a lot of time.
  • Incorrect: This would have costed a lot of money in USA.


  • Correct: He didn't cut my hair properly. Please cut it for me now. Will you cut it properly?
  • Correct: She is cutting my hair.
  • Incorrect: He cutted my hair.


  • Correct: Did you hit your goal? Hit the door hard to let them know you're here. I will not ever hit you.
  • Correct: He was hitting the nail with a hammer. I am hitting the nail with a hammer also.
  • Incorrect: He hitted the nail with hammer.


  • Correct: You didn't hurt me. Do I hurt you? I will not ever hurt you.
  • Correct: You are not hurting me now.
  • Incorrect: That hurted so much.


  • Correct: Didn't you let him inside? Let him inside now. I would always let him inside.
  • Correct: He is letting me have fun.
  • Incorrect: You letted the dog eat my food.


  • Correct: I put the books on the table like you asked me to. I will put them on the desk now. Would you like me to put them in a certain other place in the future?
  • Correct: I am putting it on the table now.
  • Incorrect: He putted the the milk in the refrigerator.


  • Correct: He quit talking to me before I could even answer his questions. Quit yelling. Will you ever quit lying?
  • Correct: He is always quitting games because he's a sore loser.
  • Incorrect: I quitted drinking alcohol.


  • Correct: I loved how you set the house up. Set the glass on the table. If you could set a fire, would you ever?
  • Correct: I was setting a good example.
  • Incorrect: He setted everything on fire.


Jul 5th

Phrasal Verbs Using "Ran"

By Jane Doe

Ran into:  means you met someone you already knew.


"I ran into her at the store while she was shopping."


Run up: it means to increase something, usually a debt

"I ran up the electricity bill because I forgot to turn the air conditioning off."


Ran over: it means to drive over something, go to another place quickly or to put someone down

"I ran over a nail when I was driving and now my tire is flat."

"She sounded worried on the phone so I ran over to her house quickly to see what the problem was."

"He ran over me with all his lies and now I am feeling really sad."


Run on: means to continue something, usually conversations.

"She ran on and on about her troubles but I didn't want to be rude by telling her to shut up."


Run off: means something doesn't affect you.

"His rude comments run off my back. He can't affect me."


Run behind: to be late

"I am running behind, please start without me."


Run to: means to accept something or to go back to something

"I always run to my anger when he acts that way."




If you know of any more "Run/Ran" phrasal verbs, add them in the comments box:)


Apr 4th

Carry On/Off/Over Vs. Pull On/Off/Over and Pass On

By Jane Doe

Carry on, Carry off, Carry over


Carry on  

"Carry on" can mean either:

  • Continue what you are doing

--"I see you are busy; carry on."

  • Throw a temper tantrum or have a bad attitude about something

--"He was mad that he didn’t get what he wanted and spent all morning carrying on about it."


Carry off 

"Carry off" means to take something away.


  • "The raccoons came and carried off my vegetables."


In the UK, they use carry off to mean other things, like when someone dies or to achieve something. In USA, we don’t use carry off for those two things; we would use pull off, which is explained further in this blog.

Carry Over

"Carry over" means that something happens in one place and continues in another.


  • "Your attitude carries over from home to work and work to home."


Pull On, Pull Off, Pull Over


Pull on

"Pull on" can mean two things:


  • Obvious, to pull on something means to grab it and pull it. 

        --"Don’t pull on my hair; that hurts me."


  • But, pull on can also mean to put something on.


--"Quickly pull on your coat so we can go!"


Pull Off 

"Pull off" means to achieve something:

Usually a difficult task or something that people didn’t expect that you could do.
--"You ate that whole meal? It was huge! I didn’t think you could pull it off!"

--"You won the race! I didn’t think you could pull that off with all those great runners!"

  • It also means to take something off.


--"The bandage was really sticking, it was hard to pull off."


 Pull Over

Pull over means when you are driving you move your car over to the side and stop.


  • "I had to pull over so I could check the map before we got lost while driving."


Pull-over is actually a hyphenated word because it’s a noun. It’s a type of clothing, a shirt or sweater that you pull over your head.

  •  "I have six pull-overs but the red one is my favorite."



Instead of saying Carry On to mean die as they do in the UK, we use the phrases “Pass away” or “pass on”:


“Pass on”: to die

  • "I loved to cook with my grandmother before she passed on."
Mar 3rd

Wake Up/Get Up

By Jane Doe
Most people will use "wake up" and "get up" interchangeably. There is a difference between the two.

Wake up:

Wake up means that you were asleep but now you're not. It doesn't indicate the postition of your body. You can wake up but still remain laying in your bed (or wherever you are sleeping). Asleep means you are unconscious. Awake means you are consious. To wake up means to switch from the unconcious realm to the conscious realm, whether or not you have actually arisen from your sleeping postition.

Get up:

Get up means that you have raised yourself up from a sitting or laying down postion into an upright postition. It could mean you were laying in bed and stood up. It could also mean you were sitting and stood up. Either way, you were not standing and now you are--once you get up. To say that you get up doesn't mean you were sleeping before you got up. It just means you were down and now you are up.