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This exercise is for intermediate-level students. Each of the below 20 sentences has a mistake.

Rewrite the sentence without the mistake, and then click on Answer to check your
answer. Explanations have been added to the answers that are not obvious.

Lets begin!

1. It is raining when I got home last night.

It was raining when I got home last night.

* Use past progressive for a longer action that was interrupted by a shorter action in the past.

2. My sister is annoying today, but usually she is nice.

My sister is being annoying today, but usually she is nice.

* Use a progressive tense (present progressive is used here) for actions and (some) adjectives
that are temporary. Your sister is not annoying; she is only being annoying today. For adjectives,
this generally applies to adjectives that require an action (e.g. being silly, being rude) and not
states (dead, tired).

3. I have not ate anything today.

I have not eaten anything today.

4. If I am a child, I would play outside.

If I were a child, I would play outside.

* Second counditional = If + past tense, subject + would/could/might. The second conditional is


used for unreal situations. Fact: You are not a child. But, if you were a child, you would play
outside.

5. Everyone have seen that movie.

Everyone has seen that movie.

6. If we will be late, they will be angry.

It we are late, they will be angry.

* Being late is a real possibility, so you should use the first conditional. First conditional = If +
subject + present simple, subject + will.

7. My father is thinking that I should stop smoking.


My father thinks I should stop smoking.

* In this sentence, the verb think is a state verb. It is generally not used in the progressive (~ing)
tense.

8. Look! It is snow.

Look! It is snowing.

9. I fell asleep while I watched TV.

I fell asleep while I was watching TV.

*After while use past progressive. Again, this is a longer action (watching TV) that was
interrupted by a shorter action (fell asleep).

10. I have lived in Canada since 10 months.

I have lived in Canada for 10 months.

11. There is a warm country.

It is a warm country. / That country is warm.

*In the above sentence, There is an adverb that indicates a place. An adverb should not be the
subject of a sentence. Instead, use It as the subject. It is a pronoun.

12. I have not an iPhone .

I do not have an iPhone.

* People do not say I have not (something) anymore. This is old-fashioned English.

13. I havent ever been to Korea.

I havent been to Korea. / I have never been to Korea.

* ever is only used with the present perfect in questions. It is not used in statements.

14. The students have a good time in class today.

The students are having a good time in class today.

* The verb have is a state verb, so it shouldnt be used in the progressive (~ing) tenses. However,
to have a good time is an expression (just like have a baby, have a party). These expressions
are actions, so they can be used in the progressive tense.
15. John probably isnt going to come to school tomorrow.

John probably wont come to school tomorrow.

* use will for predictions. Use be + going to for plans that are already decided.

16. If the world ended tomorrow, I will be very sad.

If the world ended tomorrow, I would be very sad.

* This is the second conditional. It is for a present unreal condition. There is a very low chance
the world will end tomorrow. The speaker does not believe it will happen. Therefore, to show
that its not a real possibility, we use the second conditional.

17. I still did my homework at 10:30 pm last night.

I was still doing my homework at 10:30 pm last night.

* Use past progressive for actions that were in progress at a specific time in the past.

18. He can speak Japanese because he was born in Canada.

He can speak Japanese even though/although he was born in Canada.

* These ideas contrast each other, so we should use even though/though/although.

19. Lee afraid of snakes.

Lee is afraid of snakes.

* afraid is an adjective. A verb is still needed.

20. The students were not interested in the lesson because it was bored.

The students were not interested in the lesson because it was boring.

1. There is very cold in the summer.

Its very cold there in the summer.


Explanation: In the above sentence, there is an adverb (a place). An adverb cannot be the
subject of a sentence.

2. According to me, thats true.

[In my opinion, / I think] thats true.

3. If I will be late, Ill call you.

If I am late, Ill call you.

Explanation: This is the first conditional (Future Real).

4. I am used to wake up early on weekdays.

I am used to waking up early on weekdays.

Explanation: the phrasal verb be used to is followed by a gerund (verb in ~ing form).

5. She sat in the end of the table.

She sat at the end of the table.

6. I stopped to smoke cigarettes because it was unhealthy.

I stopped smoking cigarettes because it was unhealthy.

Explanation: stop + gerund describes the activity you no longer do. stop + infinitive describes
the reason why you stopped.

7. It is very good weather.

The weather is very good.

Explanation: It = the weather.

8. I need to concentrate myself on my homework.

I need to concentrate on my homework.

Explanation: You cannot use a reflexive pronoun after concentrate.

9. Did you ever read the book Moby Dick?

Have you ever read the book Moby Dick?

Explanation: When talking about a non-specific time in the past, use the present perfect tense
(have + past participle).
10. Brian is so stupid man.

Brian is such a stupid man.

Explanation: so changes to such when it is describing a noun. See lesson plan here.

11. In Spain are many nice beaches.

There are many nice beaches in Spain. / Spain has many nice beaches.

Explanation: The above sentence has needs a subject.

12. I told that I will come back later.

I said that I would come back later.

Explanation: The object of the verb tell is a person. The object of the verb say are the
words/message you say.

13. In my city, bars are closing at 10 p.m. on weeknights.

In my city, bars close at 10 p.m. on weeknights.

Explanation: Use the present simple here to describe a regular action.

14. Lets have a dinner together sometime.

Lets have dinner together sometime.

15. Do you know where is the nearest police station?

Do you know where the nearest police station is?

16. I often do mistakes when I speak English.

I often make mistakes when I speak English.

Explanation: make is an act of creation. There was no mistake until you created it (made it).

17. I cant find nothing in my neighborhood.

I cant find anything in my neighborhood.

18. Ive seen that movie last Thursday.

19. How does your new painting look like?

What does your new painting look like? / How does your new painting look?
20. I look forward to see you next month.

I look forward to seeing you next month.

Explanation: The phrasal verb look forward to is followed by a gerund (verb in ~ing form).

21. Can I have a question?

Can I ask a question?

Explanation: Why do you want a question?

22. The news on TV are always sad.

The news on TV is always sad.

23. What means this word?

What does this word mean?

24. The capital of the United Kingdom is the London.

The capital of the United Kingdom is London.

Explanation: Countries that are groups of states (republics, unions, kingdoms, emirates, or states)
have the definite article the before them. Secondly, never use the before a city name.

25. Doctor is a hard job.

Being a doctor is hard. / Being a doctor is a hard job.

Explanation: A doctor is a person, not a job. A job is something you do (a verb, an action). What
is hard? Not the doctor (the person) its the action (= being a doctor).

26. Surprising is that no one was hurt.

Its surprising that no one was hurt. / The surprising thing is that no one was hurt.

Explanation: an adjective cannot be the subject of a sentence.

27. I suggested to buy a new car.

I suggested buying a new car.

Explanation: We use a gerund (verb in ~ing form) after the verb suggest

28. My teacher is a 34-years old woman.


My teacher is a 34-year old woman.

Explanation: 34-year old is an adjective in this sentence which describes woman. We dont
pluralize (add s to) adjectives.

29. If I would be taller, Id play basketball.

If I were taller, Id play basketball.

Explanation: This is the second conditional (a present unreal situation).

30. Thats not that bad idea.

Thats not that bad of an idea.

Explanation: ideas are countable, so you need an article (an). Of becomes a preposition of the
noun idea. [/expland]

31. One of my roommate is from Brazil.

One of my roommates is from Brazil.

32. It depends on countries.

It depends on the country.


Explanation: Always use the definite article (the) and then (usually) a singular noun
after depends on
33. Even I was tired, I went to the party.

Even though I was tired, I went to the party.

34. I explained her the problem twice.

I explained the problem twice to her.

Explanation: The object of the verb explain is what you explain, not whom you explain the
problem to.

1. What means gibberish?


What does gibberish mean?

* Mean is a verb. You need the auxiliary verb do when making a WH-question about the
object of a verb.

2. I said him he had done a mistake. (2x)

I told him (that) he had made a mistake.


Firstly, the object of the verb tell is a person, and the object of the verb say is the words that
you say. For example. I told him to come or I said hello to him. Secondly, you make a
mistake (its an act of creation we use the verb make when we create something new); you
dont do a mistake.

3. He travelled with car and arrived to Ottawa yesterday. (2x)

Prepositions: travelled by car and arrived at/in Ottawa.

4. She has so boring job.

She has such a boring job.

We use so + adjective. However, if the phrase ends in a noun, you should use such + an
article if required. For a detailed explanation, visit here.

5. I have been in Toronto since 2 months.

I have been in Toronto for two months.

We use for to describe the number of days/weeks/months/years something has happened. We


use since to describe when something started. So, if its March, you can say I have been in
Toronto since January or I have been in Toronto for two months.

6. I heard an interesting news.

I heard interesting news / I heard some interesting news.

News is an uncountable noun. You cant use the article a before it. We often use say some
news (but you dont actually need the word some).

7. I dont know where is my husband?

I dont know where my husband is.

The above sentence is a statement, not a question. In a regular statement, the order is Subject
(husband)+ Verb (is). However, when you make a WH-question with the BE verb, the order is
BE verb + Subject (Where is my husband?). The above sentence is not a WH-question, it is a
statement (called a noun clause), so the subject should be before the verb.

8. Could you tell me why did I fail?

Could you tell me why I failed?

This is another noun clause (also called an embedded question). The phrase why I failed? is the
object of the verb tell. When a question is the object of a verb, it is not written in question word
order (e.g. WH-Question + Auxiliary + Subject + Main Verb), it is written in statement word
order (WH-Question + Subject + Verb). You do not need the helping verb did here because you
are not making a question.

9. I was given lots of advices and information about buying new furnitures. (2x)

I was given lots of advice and information about buying new furniture.

Advice and furniture are uncountable nouns.

10. There are too many great restaurants in my city. Its great!

There are so many great restaurants in my city. Its great!

The word too is used to express something negative, e.g. Its too hot. Therefore, its strange to
say There are too many great restaurants, because great restaurants are usually a good thing. If
you are making a positive statement, use the word so instead of too.

11. Are you still interesting to do a trip to Las Vegas? (2x)

Are you still interested in doing a trip to Las Vegas?

Firstly, interesting describes a thing. Interested describes a persons feelings. You are interested
because the book is interesting. For more about participial adjectives, see here.

Secondly, the preposition for the adjective interested is in, and a preposition is followed by
a gerund (a verb in the ~ing form)

12. In Canada people are used to live in a cold climate.

In Canada people are used to living in a cold climate.

Again, a preposition (to) is followed by a gerund (living).

13. Im looking forward to see you soon.

I am looking forward to seeing you soon.

Again, a preposition (to) is followed by a gerund (seeing)

14. I have not an iPhone.

I dont have an iPhone.

The verb have, as a main verb, in the negative is dont/doesnt have. It is old fashioned to say I
have not an iPhone. Even in England, people generally do not use this form anymore.
15. This is the worse day of my life.

This is the worst day of my life.

Use the superlative form bad-worse-worst.

16. I told my friend to come to here.

I told my friend to come here.

Here is an adverb (like up, down, there, away). You dont need a preposition (to) before an
adverb.

17. A: How does it look like? (B: Its big and green.)

What does it look like?

There are two possible questions here that basically have the same meaning:

How does it look?

What does it look like?

Dont mix them up.

18. My health depends of what I eat.

My health depends on what I eat.

The preposition that follows depends is on.

19. Lets go by walk. Its close.

Lets go on foot. Its close.

We dont say by walk. Instead, we use the expression on foot.

20. He looks he is married and he seems polite.

He looks like he is married and he seems polite.

Verbs like look/seem/feel/sound are called linking verbs. These verbs are often used in a way
that is different from action verbs. Compare:

John is looking at the sky. (Action verb John is looking)


John looks tired. (Linking verb. The meaning is John= tired. The subject, John, is not looking
anywhere. He is tired.)

For linking verbs, there are three typical structures:

1. Verb + adjective. (You look beautiful.)

2. Verb + LIKE + Noun. (You look like a model.)

3. Verb + LIKE + Phrase. (You look like you didnt sleep yesterday.)

Dont mix them up.

21. I have two bothers. One is named John and another is named Leo.

I have two brothers. One is named John and the other is named Leo.

We know that you have two brothers. If one is named John, then it must be THE other whom is
named Leo. We must use the definite article here because the listener knows who the other one is
(the brother is specific). Review another/other/the other here.

22. A: Hows going? B: Im fine. (1.5x)

A: Hows it going? B: Great/Good/Well.

Firstly, the expression is Hows it going? (with the subject it). Secondly, the question
means How is your life going? The answer usually does not begin with Im, It should be just
an adjective, describing your life recently, e.g. Great! / Good. / Not bad!

23. I am not agree with you.

I do not agree with you.

Agree is a verb. To make a negative sentence, just add do + not (or dont).