Lesson 14 : Changing and Unchanging Verbs

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Changing and Unchanging Verbs

These next pages are super important. Don't move on until you fully understand them. You'll use these ideas whenever you speak English.

Main verbs show the action in a sentence. Every sentence has one (or the verb to be). Main verbs come in two forms: the changing form (like see/ sees) and the unchanging form (see).

The unchanging form is the action part of the main verb: see, do, go, make. This is also called the simple form. You don't add -s to the simple form.

Helping verbs change and work with the simple form of the main verb. The helping verb takes over the main verb's job.

Let's use a helping verb to make a regular statement stronger. This shows a stronger opinion. In a regular statement, you skip over the helping verb spot.


For he, she, it, the helping verb changes from "do" to "does." The main verb stays simple. The emphatic form isn't used a lot, but it helps with negative statements and questions.


Adding Does for Emphasis (He, She, It)
Add does to make the statement stronger. Use the unchanging form of the main verb (simple form).

Main Verb                                              Helping Verb + Unchanging Form

The boy eats apples.                                    The boy does eat apples.
1. My bus comes late.                                   
2. My boss needs this done.                         
3. The clock costs a lot.                                 
4. Tom makes mistakes.                               
5. The car runs well.                                     

Adding Do for Emphasis (I, You, We, They)

Add do to make the statement stronger. Use the unchanging form of the main verb.

Main Verb                                              Helping Verb + Unchanging Form
The boys eat apples.                                The boys do eat apples!
1. The kids play at the park.                     
2. The dogs get dirty.                               
3. You forget many things.                     
4. These reports need work.                   
5. I work too hard.                                   

Adding Do or Does for Emphasis



Adding Do or Does for Emphasis

Add do or does to make the statement stronger. Use the simple unchanging form for the main verb.

Main Verb                                                    Helping Verb + Unchanging Form

Sam eats apples.                                            Sam does eat apples.
1. The kids play at the park.                          
2. My bus comes late.                                     
3. The dogs get dirty.                                      
4. My boss needs this done.                          
5. You forget many things.                            
6. The clock costs a lot.                                  
7. Tom makes mistakes.                                
8. These reports need work.                         
9. I work too hard.                                          
10. The car runs well.                                    

Adding Can

Adding Can

Add can to indicate ability. Use the unchanging form for the main verb.

Main Verb                                                    Can + Simple Form

Sam eats apples.                                                  Sam can eat apples.
1. The kids play at the park.                                      
2. My bus comes late.                                         
3. The dogs get dirty.                                         
4. My boss gets things done.                           
5. You forget many things.                             
6. The clock costs a lot.                                   
7. Tom makes mistakes.                                 
8. These reports change every day.             
9. I work too hard.                                           
10. The car runs well.                                     



The infinitive is to + simple form, such as to be, to do, or to go. It is used like a noun. You can say I eat pizza, I want pizza, or I want to eat pizza.


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