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Grammar Challenge


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Beom from South Korea: 'I think grammar is easier than pronunciation!' Beom studies at Bloomsbury International

Disgreements with auxiliaries
Last week, we looked at using auxiliaries to make short agreements during a conversation. Now it's time to find out how to disagree using them. To do this, William plays Beom's dad... will he succeed in embarassing Beom in front of all his friends, or will Beom be able to disagree correctly with William? Find out by listening to the programme!


Listen to the programme!

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Using auxiliaries to disagree:
  1. Signal disagreement.
  2. Repeat the subject of the original statement as a pronoun.
  3. Use an auxiliary verb relative to the verb in the original sentence (negative – positive; positive – negative).
Statement   Signal disagreement Pronoun Auxiliary
We both went to a graduation party.
  No we didn't.
I was at the party with all my friends.   No you weren't.
Joyce couldn’t find anybody to dance with.   Yes she could.

We haven't got much time...

  Yes we have.


Download Catherine's grammar explanation and table (pdf - 51 K)

Download this programme (mp3 - 1.8 MB)
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Now it's your turn to practise disagreeing with auxiliaries. Go to our quiz page on this subject here.

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Catherine and William

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How to... disagree
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Are you confused about how to use 'let' and 'allow'? We'll be explaining all in the next episode...

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