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Lesson 10
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Advanced English
Lesson 10 - Shopping
Grammar

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The Real and Unreal Conditional

The Real Conditional (The Present Conditional)

Sentences in the present conditional have one part of the sentence which begins with "if" and contains a verb in the present tense (Review present tense) and another part of the sentence in the future with "will" (Review future with "will").  If the part of the sentence with "if" goes first (as in the first example below), use a comma.  The present conditional also known as the "real" conditional because it is generally used with situations that are very likely (probable).  For example, in the sentence below, rain is a definite possibility. 

If it rains, I will use an umbrella.
I will use an umbrella if it rains.

Practice
Write a sentence in the present conditional using the information provided.  Don't forget to use a comma if the part of the sentence with "if" goes first.  Although you can write present conditional sentences with contractions, for this exercise please write the sentences without contractions like the example.

example
If/it/rain/I/use an umbrella

1. If/we/drive/we/get there faster
   
   

2. If/she/call/we/pick her up
   
   

3. They/buy a car/if/they/get the loan from the bank
   
   

4. If/he/get here soon/we/start the project
   
   

5. He/take the medicine/if/the doctor/tell him to
   
   

 

The Unreal Conditional

Sentences in the "unreal" conditional have one part of the sentence that begins with the word "if" and contains a verb in what looks like the past tense (Review past tense) and another part of the sentence which contains the modal verb "would."  The conditional with "would" was taught in Intermediate Lesson 5 (Review conditional). If the part of the sentence with "if" goes first, use a comma.  These sentences are known as "unreal" conditional because they contain conditions that are not likely (probable).  For example, in the sentence below, winning the lottery is not very likely. 

If I won the lottery, I would buy a new car.
I would buy a new car if I won the lottery.

As I mentioned before, the verb in the part of the sentence beginning with "if" is put in what looks like past tense form.  The only exception is with the verb "to be."  It has traditionally been considered to be grammatically correct to use "were" even with the first person singular ("I") and the third person singular (he/she/it).

If I were rich, I would travel around the world.

Although in the past it was considered bad grammar, now many people use "was" in these cases. You now sometimes even see "was" listed as an alternative in grammar books.

If I was rich, I would travel around the world.

Practice
Write a sentence in the "unreal" conditional using the information provided.  Don't forget to use a comma if the part of the sentence with "if" goes first.  Although you can write conditional sentences with contractions, for this exercise please write the sentences without contractions like the example.

example
If/we/have/a private airplane/we/travel/around the world

1. If/she/speak/English/she/get/a better job
   
   

2. They/fly/to Mars/if/they/have/a spaceship
   
   

3. If/I/be/a good cook/I/cook/delicious meals every night
   
   

4. I/study English at inglesmundial.com/if/I/have/a computer
   
   

5. If/I/be/her mother/I/drive/her to school
   
   

 

Find the Mistake

Instructions
Find the errors in the sentences.  Write the sentences correctly.

example
She are a student. --> She is a student.

1. If she will study, she will pass the test.
   
   

2. I wold be careful if I were you.
   
   

3. If I have a lot of money, I'd travel.
   
   

4. I carged the new blouse to my credit card.
   
   

5. If they lived here they would attend that school. *
   
   

*The error in #5 is the comma. It needs a comma.

 

Study English Abroad

You will find more information about studying English abroad and inexpensive alternatives to studying abroad in the Study Abroad area of Passport to English.

Study Abroad Information
Why study abroad?
What to look for in a study abroad program
Types of Programs
Alternatives to Study Abroad
Home Exchange

 

 

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