English Grammar Modal Verbs
Learn English Modal Verbs Grammar

Grammar Level 3- Lesson Ten

In this grammar lesson, you learn about Modal Verbs in English and how to use it in your English conversation and writing. Just follow examples and write them down a few times to learn them very well. After finishing this lesson, you should work on its quiz.

Grammar Recap

In our previous lesson, we covered the Past & Past Continuous If you just landed on this page, we suggest that you complete our previous lesson including its quizzes before continuing on this lesson.

Requirement Lessons

There is no required lessons for working and learning this lesson.

Modal Verbs

Modal Verb
Example in a sentence

can:

possibility and ability

This baby can crawl.

I can crawl
We can crawl
You can crawl
You can crawl
He can crawl
She can crawl
They can crawl
It can crawl

negative contraction: can’t crawl

will:

future

He will go to the beach later today.

I will go
We will go
You will go
You will go
He will go
She will go
They will go
It will go

negative contraction: won’t go

shall:

possibility and future possibility
Your teacher recommends that you don’t use shall if your interest is in American English. 98 % of the American public doesn’t use it. It sounds very formal. In fact, it sounds too formal.

may:

possiblity and permission

1. (future possibility) They may walk their dogs this afternoon.

2. (Asking permission)

A: May I walk your dog?

B: Yes, you may.

I may walk
We may walk
You may walk
You may walk
He may walk
She may walk
They may walk
It may walk

negative: may not walk (don’t contract this one!)

could

  1. past tense of can–usually negative.

  2. possibility and ability

When I went out to eat last night, I couldn’t read the signs because they were in Chinese.

I could read
We could read
You could read
You could read
He could read
She could read
They could read
It could read

negative contraction: couldn’t read

would:

past tense of “will”

She wouldn’t touch the spider she saw earlier this morning because she’s afraid of them.

I would touch
We would touch
You would touch
You would touch
He would touch
She would touch
They would touch
It would touch

negative contraction: wouldn’t touch

should:

recommendation and good idea.

(Related to “shall” but much better and easier to use.)

He should be careful on those roller skates because he could fall.

I should be
We should be
You should be
You should be
He should be
She should be
They should be
It should be

negative contraction: shouldn’t be

might:

possibility

(use instead of “may” in some cases)

These eggs might break when they hit the ground. In fact, they’ll probably break unless they land on something soft.

I might break
We might break
You might break
You might break
He might break
She might break
They might break
It might break

negative: might not break (don’t contract!)

must:

necessary and important

They must attend this important meeting.

I must attend
We must attend
You must attend
You must attend
He must attend
She must attend
They must attend
It must attend

negative: must not attend (a contraction here is okay, but it sounds formal and it sounds British. Most Americans try not to sound like they have a British accent, but you may use the contraction if you want to)

Remember: Modal verbs are followed by the main verb in the simple form.

I must go.

He must be tired.

They should eat.

 

 

Quiz for Modal Verbs

Now that you learned your new lesson, it is time to go to the Modal Verbs page and finish your quiz. While working on your quiz, you can always go back to its lesson to refresh your memory.

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Next Grammar Lesson

In our next lesson, we will cover the Idiomatic Modals Before moving to the next lesson, we suggest that you complete this lesson including its quizzes.

Related Grammar Lessons

None

Grammar Level 3 Outline

If you wish to explore all lessons that are covered in our Grammar Level 3, you can visit the Grammar Level 3 Outline page.