Basic English Structure

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A brief intro to English structure.

A brief intro to English structure.

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  • 1. Basic English Structure
  • 2. Almost Every English sentence can be reduced to these elements: Sentence: Subj.+Verb+Obj. Question: QW+objQW+Aux+Sub+(verb)+ This brief slideshow will cover these formulas.
  • 3. Subject + Verb + (Object)
    • The subject of a sentence is the thing that does the action. The VERB is the functional verb in a sentence, the one that gets the conjugation for number and tense. The object can be many things, but it is what is acted upon by the subject. In other terms, the subject is the doer, the verb is what is done and the object is what it gets done to. The reason the object is in parentheses is because sometimes verbs take no objects (The baby cries) and sometimes they take two (I gave Juan the pen).
  • 4. {QW [+objQW] } + Aux + Sub + (verb)+
    • This is the basic form of a question…
  • 5.
    • The yellow text indicates a question word and its object (if any). Who, what, when, where, why, what time, how many, what kind of, etc.
    { QW [+objQW] } + Aux + Sub + (verb)+ How many lessons have you taken? What kind of medicine is she taking? Where is the nearest bookstore?
    • With simple yes or no answer questions, we don’t use a question word, we just start with an auxiliary.
    Have you eaten yet?
  • 6.
    • The auxiliary controls the tense, how we know if we’re talking about the present, past, etc.
    {QW [+objQW] } + Aux + Sub + (verb)+ What time does Harry get home? Where are the pillow cases? When did the first Batman comic come out?
  • 7.
    • The subject is the doer of the action, what goes first when you answer the question:
    {QW [+objQW] } + Aux + Sub + (verb)+
        • When does Peter teach class?
        • Peter teaches class on Thursdays.
  • 8.
    • When an action verb is necessary, it goes here.
    {QW [+objQW] } + Aux + Sub + ( verb )+ Does Peter speak Spanish? Peter doesn’t speak Spanish Peter speaks Spanish
    • Whenever an auxiliary is present in a clause, it is the auxiliary that is conjugated except in present and past perfect forms.
    Have you seen my dog?