Douglas Adams  
   Home  Listening/Speaking |  Grammar |  Reading |  Writing 


Activity links








abridged stories




essay skills

verb choice

end focus


Web Design

How To Center



more to come...


created and maintained by
Douglas E. Adams

Teaching Conditionals

Conditionals are basically a sub set of adverb clauses, but deserve their own set of lessons due to their variety of forms and their ability to be inverted.

There are essentially five main types of conditionals which can be further divided into two main groups.

Real/Factual Conditionals Unreal Conditionals
  • Past Real/Factual
  • Present Real/Factual
  • Future Real/Factual
  • Present Unreal
  • Past Unreal

As mentioned in the lessons on adverb clauses, conditionals derive their name from the presence of a condition that must be met before a particular result can happen

   In the example below...

    If Tom steals Jessica's burger, she takes his french fries.

...we have a condition that must happen before a particular result can happen. In other words, only if the condition [Tom steals Jessica's burger] happens, does the result [she takes his french fries] happen.

The sentence in the example above contains a present real conditional and is a good place to start our lesson. However, before doing so, a quick note on a small subset of the real conditionals may be useful.

Past Real Conditionals

Past Real Conditionals typically have the simple past in both the dependent and the independent clause(though the past continuous is also possible), and are used to express conditional habits in the past.

   for example,...

    If Tom saw a burger, he ate it.

Special case with could:

    If Tom could eat a burger, he did (eat a burger). - [past possibility habit]

Up Next... Present Real Conditionals


page last modified: June 22, 2014

Top of Page Learn more...
Copyright © 2016 Tesltimes.org

Home | Search | Info | Contact
Search maintained by Douglas Adams | Contact Us