Future Probability

When you ask for opinions about future probability, you usually use will + base form or be going to + base form. However, there are other alternatives that are also common in spoken English.

In the table below, you can find a collection of useful phrases and expressions that will help you convey future probabilities with confidence. The table includes various patterns and grammar structures, including modal verbs like “will” and “might,” as well as phrases such as “there’s a good chance” and “I’m sure of it.”

PhrasesGrammar PatternExplanationExamples
will/be going towill/going to + base formExpresses future events or actions without indicating certainty“I will go to the party tomorrow.”
“What do you think they‘re going to do about it?
Definitelywill definitely + base formIndicates a high level of certainty or confidence in a future event“She will definitely win the race. She’s the fastest runner.”
I’m sure be sure of something
be sure + subject + will + base form
Indicates strong confidence or certainty in a future outcomeI’m sure it will rain today. The sky is cloudy.”
I’m bound to be bound to + base formSuggests a high likelihood or inevitability of a future event“If you keep practicing, you’re bound to improve your skills.”
There’s a good chance There’s a good chance + subject + will + base formIndicates a favorable probability or possibility of somethingThere’s a good chance she will get the job. She has relevant experience.”
Fairly likely tobe fairly likely to + base formExpresses a moderate probability or likelihood of a future event“He is fairly likely to pass the exam. He studied hard.”
Mightmight + base formSuggests a possibility or a lower level of certainty in the future“I might go to the concert if I can get tickets.”
There’s a chance something will/won’t happenPhraseIndicates the existence of a possibility or an unlikelihoodThere’s a chance it will rain tomorrow. Bring an umbrella.”
Unlikelybe unlikely that + somebody/ something + will + base formExpresses a low probability or unlikelihood of a future event“It‘s unlikely that he will arrive on time. He’s always late.”
There’s only a small chance that something will happenPhraseIndicates a very low probability or likelihood of somethingThere’s only a small chance they will cancel the event. It’s well-organized.”
Doubt somebody will do somethingdoubt + subject + will + base formExpresses skepticism or lack of belief in a future event“I doubt they will win the competition. Their performance wasn’t strong enough.”
Doubt something will happendoubt it will + base formIndicates skepticism or lack of belief in a future outcome“I doubt it will snow tomorrow. The weather forecast says it’ll be sunny.”
To be not the first person but definitely not the lastbe not the first person + base form, but definitely not the lastImplies a level of certainty or confidence, although not the highest“I’m not the first person to say it, but definitely not the last – he’s talented.”
Bound tobe bound to + base formSuggests a high probability or inevitability of a future event“With her skills, she is bound to succeed in her career.”
Hope soPhraseExpresses desire or optimism about a future outcomeI hope so! I really want to win the competition.”
Think soPhraseExpresses a belief or opinion that something will happenI think so. Based on the evidence, he is likely to be promoted.”
Not think soPhraseExpresses a belief or opinion that something will not happenI don’t think so. It’s unlikely they will change their decision.”

Grammar practice

Speaking practice

  1. Imagine what life will be like in ten years’ time.
  2. Spin the wheel and discuss each statement on the spinning wheel
  3. Express how likely you think each will be.
  4. Negotiate where to place the statement next to the thermometer of probability, with high temperature meaning It’ll definitely … and cold temperatures meaning It definitely won’t … .
  5. Try to use a range of phrases during their negotiations.

Passive Voice

The passive voice is a grammatical construction used in English to emphasize the object of an action rather than the subject. In a passive sentence, the subject is being acted upon or is receiving the action, while the doer of the action is often placed in a prepositional phrase or omitted altogether.

FormationThe passive voice is formed by using the appropriate form of the verb “to be” (e.g., is, am, are, was, were) followed by the past participle of the main verb.
Object as the subjectIn passive voice sentences, the object of the active sentence becomes the subject of the passive sentence.
Use of “by” (optional)When we want to mention the doer of the action in the passive voice, we use the preposition “by” followed by the doer.
Focus on the action or objectThe passive voice is used when we want to emphasize the action itself or the object being acted upon, rather than the doer of the action.
Common situations for passive voiceThe passive voice is commonly used when the doer of the action is unknown, unimportant, or obvious from the context. It is also used when talking about general truths, scientific facts, or processes.

Grammar Patterns

Tense/FormGrammar PatternExamples
Simple Presentis/are + past participleThe car is washed every week.
Past Simplewas/were + past participleThe book was written by Mark Twain.
Past Continuouswas/were being + past participleThe house was being renovated last month.
Present Perfect Simplehas/have been + past participleThe package has been delivered.
Present Perfect Continuoushas/have been being + past participleThe movie has been being filmed for months.
Past Perfect Simplehad been + past participleThe project had been completed before the deadline.
Modal + Passive Formmodal verb (can/could/may/might/should, etc.) + be + past participleThe document can be signed tomorrow.
Be Going to + Passive Formam/is/are going to be + past participleThe room is going to be cleaned this afternoon.
Gerund + Passive Formbeing + past participleBeing loved by everyone is a great feeling.

Grammar Practice

Speaking Practice


Comment Adverbs

Adverbs are a type of word that provide more information about verbs, adjectives, or other adverbs in a sentence. They describe how an action is done, when it happens, where it takes place, or to what extent.

This lesson will focus on a specific group of adverbs called “comment adverbs.” These adverbs express the speaker’s attitude, opinion, or comment about the action or situation. They add more depth and emotion to a statement. Let’s explore some common comment adverbs:

Comment AdverbMeaningExample
ActuallyEmphasizes truth or reality“I thought it was expensive, but actually, it’s quite affordable.”
AmazinglyExpresses surprise or astonishment“She sang amazingly well and impressed everyone.”
ApparentlyBased on available evidence, seemingly true“Apparently, he won the lottery, but I’m not sure.”
BasicallySimplifying or summarizing“Basically, it means we have to start over.”
ClearlyIndicates something is evident or understood“He explained the rules clearly, so we understood.”
GenerallyBroadly or typically“Generally, people enjoy going to the beach in summer.”
HopefullyExpresses positive expectation or desire“Hopefully, we’ll have a successful event tomorrow.”
LuckilySomething positive happened by chance“I forgot my keys, but luckily, I found a spare set.”
PersonallyIndicates a personal opinion or experience“Personally, I think it’s the best movie I’ve seen.”
ObviouslySomething is easily understood or apparent“He didn’t study, so obviously, he failed the test.”
SadlyExpresses sorrow or regret“Sadly, she couldn’t attend the party due to illness.”
SurprisinglyHighlights something unexpected“Surprisingly, the cake tasted better than it looked.”
UnfortunatelySomething undesirable or negative“Unfortunately, the concert was cancelled due to rain.”

Grammar practice 1

Grammar practice 2

Speaking Practice

  1. Get into pairs or small groups.
  2. Take turns being the speaker and the listener.
  3. Spin the wheel to see a question.
  4. Start speaking about the topic on the wheel.
  5. Try to use a comment adverb every time you share your opinion.

Present Perfect and Adverbs

Present Perfect Review

The present perfect tense is a verb form used to connect past actions or events to the present. It indicates that something started in the past and has a relevance or connection to the present moment. In other words, it emphasizes the relationship between past actions and their impact on the current situation.

Grammar pattern
Form: Subject + have/has + past participle (3rd form)
Expressing Experiences“I have visited Paris several times.”
Unfinished Actions“They have studied English for three years.”
Actions with Relevance“She has lost her keys.”
Recent Past“He has just arrived home.”

Adverbs used with Present Perfect

There are some adverbs that we can use with present perfect to make emphasis or add additional details.

AlreadyBefore the present time or earlier than expected“I have already finished my homework.”
EvenEmphasizing a surprising or unexpected situation“I’ve been very busy. I haven’t even had time to have lunch.”
EverAt any time in the past or in one’s life“Have you ever traveled abroad?”
JustReferring to a very recent past or a short time ago“He’s just come back from Brazil.”
LatelyIn the recent past or during a recent period“I haven’t seen him lately.”
NeverNot at any time in the past or in one’s life“I have never been to Australia.”
OnlyIndicating exclusivity or emphasizing limitations“I’ve only done the first year of my course.”
RecentlyIn the near past or not long ago“She has recently started a new job.”
So farDescribing the extent of an action up to the present time“They have visited three countries so far.”
StillIndicating that a situation or action is continuing or ongoing“I still haven’t found what I’m looking for
YetExpressing an action or event expected to happen but hasn’t occurred until now“They haven’t finished their project yet.”

Grammar practice

Speaking practice


Future Forms

For High-Intermediate English learners

There are different ways of talking about the future in English. While one structure may be preferred for certain meanings, in many cases more than one structure can be used with little or no change of meaning.

Future FormGrammar PatternMeaningExplanationExamples
Present be going tosubject + be + going to + base verbPlanned or intended actions in the futureUsed when something is already decided or plannedI am going to visit my grandparents next weekend.
Willsubject + will + base verbSpontaneous decisions, predictions, promises, or offersUsed for decisions made at the moment or predictions/promisesIt’s hot here. I will open the window.
Present Continuoussubject + am/is/are + present participle (-ing form)Fixed plans or arrangements in the near futureUsed for actions already planned or arrangedI am meeting my friend for dinner tonight.
Might/Maysubject + might/may + base verbPossibilities or uncertain future eventsUsed when there is a possibility, but uncertaintyI might go to the party if I finish my work early.
Future Continuoussubject + will be + present participle (-ing form)Ongoing actions or events in the futureUsed to describe actions happening at a specific timeThey will be watching a movie this time next week.

Grammar Practice

Speaking Practice


Reported Speech

Reported speech, also known as indirect speech, is used to report what someone else said.

It’s different from direct speech, which is when we repeat the exact words that someone else said.

In reported speech, we need to change the tense and pronouns to match the new speaker and the time of reporting. Here’s a table that summarizes the changes:

Direct SpeechReported SpeechExample
Present SimplePast Simple“I like pizza,” said John.
John said that he liked pizza.
Present ContinuousPast Continuous“I am playing soccer,” said Emily.
Emily said that she was playing soccer.
Present PerfectPast Perfect“I have visited France,” said Kate.
Kate said that she had visited France.
Present Perfect Cont.Past Perfect Continuous“I have been studying Spanish,” said Tom.
Tom said that he had been studying Spanish.
Past SimplePast Perfect“I went to the store,” said Sarah.
Sarah said that she had gone to the store.
Past ContinuousPast Perfect Continuous“I was watching TV,” said Mike.
Mike said that he had been watching TV.
Past PerfectPast Perfect“I had finished my homework,” said Jane.
Jane said that she had finished her homework.
Past Perfect Cont.Past Perfect Continuous“I had been studying for hours,” said Alex.
Alex said that he had been studying for hours.
Future SimpleConditional (would) + Infinitive“I will come to the party,” said Peter.
Peter said that he would come to the party.
Future ContinuousConditional Continuous (would + be + Ving“I will be working late,” said Mark.
Mark said that he would be working late.
Future PerfectConditional Perfect (would + have + PP)“I will have finished by then,” said Anna.
Anna said that she would have finished by then.
Future Perfect Cont.Conditional Perfect Cont. (would + have + been + Ving)“I will have been studying for 4 hours,” said Sam.
Here/ThereChanged according to the new location“I live here,” said Lisa.
Lisa said that she lived there.
Personal PronounsChanged according to the new speaker“I love this song,” said Tim.
Tim said that he loved that song.

Grammar Practice

Speaking Practice

  1. Open the box
  2. Look at the picture
  3. Answer the following questions using reported speech

What did they say?/ What did they ask?


Past Perfect Simple

The past perfect simple is used to describe an action that was completed before another action in the past.

Grammar PatternMeaningExamples
Subject + had +
past participle (3rd form)
Expresses an action completed
before another action or time in the past.
I had already eaten when he arrived.
She had studied English before she moved to London.
They had finished their work before the deadline.

In order to master this verb tense it is crucial that you know by heart the past participle of the most used irregular verbs. Below you can see a list of the basic irregular verbs that intermediate/ high-intermediate learners MUST know already.

Base formSimple past
(2nd form)
Past participle
(3rd form)

Grammar practice

Speaking practice

  1. Choose a box
  2. Open the box
  3. Each team member will complete the sentence using their own ideas
  4. Share your sentence with your classmates

Simple Past vs. Past Continuous

The simple past and past continuous are both verb tenses used to describe actions or events that occurred in the past. Here’s a table that explains the differences between the two tenses and provides examples of each:

Verb TenseGrammar PatternExplanationExamples
[Base Form + –ed /
Irregular Verb Past Form]
Used to describe a completed action or
event in the past.
She studied for three hours yesterday.
He played soccer with his friends last weekend.
They traveled to Europe last summer.
I cooked dinner for my family last night.
Past Continuous[Past form of “be” (was/were)
+ Present Participle
Used to describe an ongoing action or
event that was happening at a specific time in the past.
She was studying for three hours yesterday.
He was playing soccer with his friends when it started to rain.
They were traveling to Europe when they heard about the hurricane.
I was cooking dinner when my friend called me.

It’s important to note that the simple past is formed by adding –ed to regular verbs, or using the second form of irregular verbs,

The past continuous is formed by using the verb “to be” in the past tense (was/were) and adding the present participle (-ing) of the main verb.

Base formSimple Past

Here’s a table with the spelling rules of the present participle (-ing verbs):

Add -ing to most verbstalk → talking
If the verb ends in -e, drop the e and add -ingdance → dancing
If the verb ends in -ie, change -ie to -y and add -inglie → lying
If the verb ends in a single consonant after a single vowel, double the consonant and add -ingrun → running
If the verb ends in -c, change -c to -ck and add -ingpicnic → picnicking
If the verb ends in a vowel followed by -l, double the -l and add -ingtravel → travelling
If the verb ends in -w, -x, or -z, add -ing without any changeschew → chewing

Grammar Practice


Speaking Practice


The Power of your Native Grammar 📑

Dear English learner,

I know that learning grammar in English can be challenging and confusing. However, I know for sure that if you have a basic understanding of your native grammar, you can learn English grammar easier and faster. Let’s take a look at why this is important for English learners.

Having a basic understanding of grammar patterns in your native language is important when learning a foreign language because it helps in several ways.

🌠 Transferable skills

Learning grammar in one language can help in the acquisition of grammar patterns in another language. This is because many languages share similar grammar structures, and understanding the grammatical concepts in one language can make it easier to recognize and learn them in another language.

👍 Comprehension

Knowing the grammar patterns and syntax of your native language can help you understand the structure and function of sentences in a foreign language. This will allow you to better comprehend what you are reading or hearing, and make it easier to remember the new language’s grammar patterns and vocabulary.

💬 Communication

A basic understanding of grammar in your native language can help you better express yourself when speaking and writing in a foreign language. This is because you will have a better grasp of sentence structure and be able to construct more complex sentences.

🚩 Error correction

Knowing the grammar of your native language can help you remember grammar patterns easily and identify errors in the foreign language you are learning. This is because you will be able to recognize when a sentence in a foreign language does not follow the grammatical structure you are accustomed to.

🚀 Freedom

Knowing the basic grammar of your own language can help you use a new language on your own. You will know more about how languages work and understand grammar patterns and syntax better. This will make it easier for you to speak and write the new language with more confidence, and you won’t need to depend on a teacher or dictionary all the time.

So, if you’re learning a new language, don’t forget to *brush up on your grammar skills in your native language! It can make learning the new language much easier and help you communicate with more confidence.

Plus, you’ll be able to identify errors and correct them on your own, without always needing a teacher or dictionary. Good luck on your language-learning journey!

With love,

P.S. *brush up on is a phrasal verb. It means to review or refresh your knowledge or skills in a particular subject or activity that you have learned before. It’s like giving yourself a quick reminder of what you already know.


What is ✨ Magical Thinking ✨ in Learning Languages?

Dear English learner,

I know that learning a new language can be challenging, and sometimes it’s tempting to look for quick fixes or magical solutions that will make everything easier. Unfortunately, this type of thinking can actually hold you back from making progress in your English learning journey. In this post, I’ll explore what magical thinking is, why it can be problematic, and how to avoid falling into its trap.

What is Magical Thinking?

Magical thinking is when someone believes that two things are connected, even if there is no logical reason for them to be related. For instance, if you think that wearing a lucky charm will help you pass a test, even though there’s no proof to support that idea, then you’re using magical thinking.

It’s important to remember that believing in things like lucky charms, mantras, and positive thoughts won’t necessarily help you achieve your goals. To succeed in learning English, it’s better to focus on practicing regularly and using effective learning strategies.

When it comes to learning English, magical thinking can take many forms. Some examples include:

  • Believing that grammar is not important and that you can become fluent just by speaking with native speakers or watching TV shows.
  • Some people believe memorizing grammar rules or vocabulary lists will make them fluent, but this is not enough.
  • Thinking that you’ll magically “get it” one day, without putting in the necessary time and effort to study and practice.
  • Expecting that you’ll become fluent in a matter of weeks or months, rather than accepting that language learning is a long-term process.
  • Assuming that you’ll understand everything perfectly once you’re immersed in an English-speaking environment, without realizing that confusion and misunderstandings are a natural part of the learning process.
  • Assuming that you’re too old or too “bad at languages” to learn English, without giving yourself a chance to try and improve.
  • Assuming that it is normal to be confused ALL the time.
  • Assuming that an advanced English level class will help you learn faster because one day you will magically grasp the basics of the language that you can easily and smoothly learn in a lower level class.

In a nutshell: Magical thinking is when people think they can learn a language quickly without much effort.

Why is Magical Thinking Problematic?

Magical thinking can be problematic 2 main reasons:

1 Unrealistic expectations

Magical thinking can lead to unrealistic expectations and disappointment when things don’t go as planned. If you believe that you’ll become fluent quickly and easily, and then find yourself struggling with grammar or vocabulary, you may feel frustrated and demotivated.

2 Laziness

Magical thinking can prevent you from taking action and making progress. If you believe that there’s a magical solution to your language learning challenges, you may not be willing to put in the necessary time and effort to study and practice. As a result, you may not make the progress you’re capable of and may miss out on opportunities to improve your language skills.

How to Avoid Falling into the Magical Thinking Trap

To avoid falling into the magical thinking trap, it’s important to have a realistic and growth-oriented mindset. Here are some tips to help you:

  • Recognize that learning a language is a long-term process that requires time, effort, and practice. Don’t expect to become fluent overnight, and be willing to invest in your language skills over time.
  • Focus on the process of learning, rather than the outcome. Instead of obsessing over how fluent you are or how many words you know, focus on enjoying the learning process and making incremental progress.
  • Don’t be afraid of making mistakes or feeling confused. These are natural parts of the learning process, and they’re actually signs that you’re challenging yourself and making progress.
  • Seek out resources and support that can help you improve your language skills. This could include textbooks, online courses, language exchange partners, or a tutor.
  • Stay motivated by setting realistic goals and celebrating your progress along the way. For example, you could set a goal to learn how to use five new words each week, and then celebrate when you achieve this goal.

Don’t let magical thinking hold you back from achieving your language learning goals.

Language learners must practice speaking, reading, writing, and listening regularly. It’s also important to use various resources, like books, podcasts, and news articles. Avoid thinking that one method or tool is all you need for success. Remember, everyone learns differently. It’s good to practice speaking with English speakers, even if you make mistakes.

Wishing or visualizing won’t make you learn faster. The most effective way to learn is to study and practice consistently.

Remember that there are no shortcuts or magical solutions – the key to success is hard work, dedication, and consistent practice.

With love,