Category Archives: grammar

#GrammarTrivia: Brackets

Hello, fellas! How’s your day?

Today we will talk about “brackets.” Here we go! 

Brackets are symbols mainly used as separator for additional information to a sentence or a main content. If we remove the brackets, the sentence would still make good sense. There are two main types of brackets: round () and square []. British English (BrE) and American English (AmE) define them differently.
BrE: (  ) = round brackets or brackets

AmE: (  ) = parentheses

BrE: [  ] = square brackets

AmE: [  ] = brackets

Round brackets or parentheses are used to add extra information to a sentence.

E.g.: “Lake Toba (Indonesia: Danau Toba) is the largest volcanic lake in the world and is in Sumatra, Indonesia.” 
Round brackets or parentheses are used to indicate plural or singular nouns.

E.g.: “My new shelf need book(s).”
Round brackets or parentheses are used to add a personal comment.

E.g.: “Kuta Beach is the most beautiful beach in Bali. (I prefer Sanur Beach  to Kuta Beach.)”
Round brackets or parentheses are used to define abbreviations.

E.g.: “The link above will take you to a PDF (Portable Document Format) version.”

Square brackets are used to modify another person’s words, especially when we want to make it clear that the modification has been made by us, not by the original writer. 


The witness said: “He [the policeman] hit me.”
Square brackets are used to add information.

E.g.: “The two teams in the finals of the first FIFA Football World Cup were both from South America [Uruguay and Argentina].”
Square brackets are used to add missing words.

E.g.: “It is [a] good question.” 
Square brackets are used to modify a direct quotation.


He “love[s] driving.” (The original words were “I love driving.”)
That’s all for today, fellas! I hope it’ll be useful for you. Good night!
Compiled and written by @anhtiss at @EnglishTips4U. Saturday, March 10, 2018.


#GrammarTrivia: Confusing verbs

Hello, Fellas. We meet again. How are you today? This evening we are going to have a discussion about confusing verbs.

Who had felt dilemmatic about the using of ‘make’ and ‘do’ in a sentence? Because sometimes I did.

‘Make’ vs. ‘do’

After I read some references, it is said that we use ‘do’ to indicate an activity/action.


  • “Do your homework,”
  • “You should do your work,”
  • “It’s my schedule to do the laundry.”

Likewise, we can also use ‘do’ even if there is no physical object to be shown.

For illustration:

  • “I would do anything for you,”
  • “She didn’t do anything wrong,”
  • “I do nothing since this morning.”

Meanwhile, ‘make’ is used when someone is creating/building/performing something. It is usually something that you can see/touch (physical object).


  • “I am making cheesecake,”
  • “Please, don’t make him cry.”
  • “Smartphone makes us communicating with someone easily.”

‘Say’ vs. ‘tell.’

According to Cambridge dictionary, ‘say’ focuses on the words in someone speech. For illustrations,

  • “He said,I want to buy apples.’

On the other hand, ‘say’ also acts as a reporting verb.


  • “He said he wanted to buy apples.”

Meanwhile ‘tell’ is used to report the message of the speech or to instruct someone.


  • “He told me that he wanted to buy apples,”
  • “Tell him to buy apples.”

‘Shall’ vs. ‘will.’

In simple future tense, we traditionally use ‘shallafter the first person pronoun (I and we) while ‘you,’ ‘they,’ ‘she,’ ‘he,’ and ‘it’ are followed by ‘will.’

For instances:

  • “We shall go to supermarket to buy some vegetables and meat,”
  • “You will get a good grade if you study harder.”

However, when we want to emphasis something the rules are reversed. The first pronouns are followed by ‘will,’ while ‘shall’ is placed after the second and the third pronouns.


  • “I will not forgive you,”
  • “She shall read the textbooks as her thesis refrences.”



Compiled and written by @mettaa_ for @EnglishTips4u on Thursday, August 31, 2017

#GrammarTrivia: Tricky prepositions

Hello, Fellas. Happy Independence Day! How’s your day? Did you attend the rising flag ceremony like I did?

Today we would discuss some tricky prepositions, such as “ask for.”’ “ask to,” “into,” “in to,” etc.

“Into” vs. “in to”

“Into” shows the motion towards something else, for illustration a place (a room).


  • “I walk into the meeting room,”
  • “The bird fly into its nest.”

Meanwhile “in to” is generally an adverb ‘in’ which is followed by preposition ‘to.’


  • “I turn in to Thomson Road,”
  • “Put this pen in to the pencil case.”

“Ask for” vs. “ask to.”

“Ask for” is a phrasal verb that express our request for something (an object).


  • “I will ask for a new phone on my birthday,”
  • “Mr. John asks for his coffee.”

On the other hand, “ask to” is used when you wish someone to do something (verb).


  • “I asked Donna to clean the living room,”
  • “Daddy asked me to buy apples.”

“Think about” vs. “think of”

If you are thinking about something for a long time/considering something, then you will use “think about.”


  • “I was thinking about pursuing my master degree in UK.”
  • “My mom thought about our plan to move to Florida.”

However, if you are imagining something/spontaneously thinking about something, then you use “think of.”


  • “I thought of having a private library in my home,”
  • “This song makes me think of our high school moments.”


Compiled and written by @mettaa_ for @EnglishTips4u on Thursday, August 17, 2017

#GrammarTrivia: ‘opposite’ vs ‘in front of’

Opposite‘ and ‘in front of‘. Do these words sometimes make you confused?

It’s useful to be able to distinguish ‘opposite’ and ‘in front of’ when giving direction.  This #GrammarTrivia will explain both ‘opposite’ and ‘in front of’ as a preposition.
Opposite as a preposition means on the other side of (something or someone): across from (something or someone).

e.g. Brisbol Park Hospital is located opposite Tumaini supermarket. (The two buildings are facing each other).
In front of as a preposition means in a position just ahead or at the front part of someone or something else.

e.g. Jack is standing in front of Jill. (Jill is standing behind Jack; they are not facing each other).
That’s all for today’s session. Thank you and bye!


Compiled and written by @nkusumawicitra for @EnglishTips4U on Friday, April 28, 2017



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#EngTrivia: ‘On one’s mind’ vs. ‘in one’s mind’

What do you have in mind, fellas? You’ve been on my mind lately and I hope you all are doing well. There are two different phrases in the previous sentence. Can you spot the difference? Yup! It’s ‘on one’s mind’ and ‘in one’s mind.’

On one’s mind

This phrase indicates worry or preoccupation. It may imply: thinking a lot.


  • “You’ve been on my mind lately.”
    • Meaning: I’ve been thinking about you.
  • “You look worried. What’s on your mind?
    • Meaning: What is bothering you?

In one’s mind

This phrase is used to mean: in your imagination.

  • Example:
    • A: Dad! I just saw an UFO passing by on the sky.
    • B: Oh, boy. It’s just in your mind.

The meaning of ‘in your imagination’ doesn’t apply in all cases. ‘In one’s mind’ can be used to convey our thoughts.

  • Example:
    • In my mind, Civil War is better than Age of Ultron.”

In mind

There is another phrase: ‘in mind.’

We can use ‘in mind’ when asking for someone’s opinion or what they’re thinking of doing.

  • Example:
    • A: Want to go out and watching movie?
    • B: Sure. Do you have anything in mind?
    • A: Let’s watch Split.

Now, let’s take a look at this following sentence:

  • Example:
    • “Bear in mind that I don’t eat meat because I’m a vegetarian.”

In the previous sentence, ‘in mind’ or precisely ‘bear in mind’ means: to remember an information.

Compiled and written by @anhtiss at @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, April 12, 2017

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#EngClass: Participial adjective – Comparative and superlative

Hello hey ho, fellas! Still following our previous discussion on ‘participial adjective’, we will talk about stating degrees of comparison.

Degrees of comparison are used when we compare one thing/person with another. There are three degrees of comparison:

  • positive,
  • comparative, and
  • superlative.

Comparative degree of comparison

Let’s start with the comparative degree. The comparative degree is used to compare
two persons or things having the same quality.

To form the comparative degree of adjectives, we usually add -er to adjective with two or less syllables. Example:

  • Taller
  • Lighter
  • Nicer

However, when forming the comparative degree of participial adjectives, we use the
word ‘more.’ Example:

Participial adjective



More boring


More bored


More tiring


More tired


More alarming


More alarmed


More example:

Participial adjective





more relaxing



more relaxed



more interesting



more interested



more confusing



more confused

Superlative degree of comparison

Moving on to the superlative degree of adjective. Superlative degree denotes the existence of the highest degree of the quality. The superlative degree of adjective is used to single out one person or thing from all the rest.

To form the superlative degree of adjectives, we usually add ‘-est’ to adjective with
two or less syllables. Example:

  • Tallest
  • Lightest
  • Nicest

However, when forming the superlative degree of participial adjectives, we use the
word ‘most.

Participial adjective



Most boring


Most bored


Most tiring


Most tired


Most alarming


Most alarmed

More example:

Participial adjective





Most relaxing



Most relaxed



Most interesting



Most interested



Most confusing



Most confused


That’s a wrap, fellas! I hope the explanation was clear enough. However, if you have any question on the topic, feel free to leave a message in the comment box.


Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Saturday, April 8, 2017


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#EngQuiz: Participial adjective

In short, participial adjectives are present and past participles which are used as adjectives. Present and past participles adjectives are used in slightly different ways. One talks about something that causes of the feeling , and the other talks about how someone feels.

Find a recap on that session here: #EngClass: Participial adjective (3)

Moving on, this time around, we’re having a quiz on present and past participle adjectives. Let’s start, shall we?

1. He was (terpesona) to hear his little son singing in the bath.
Correct! ‘Amused’ means ‘terpesona.’ Therefore, “He was amused.” means “Dia merasa terpesona.”
2. I find these instructions very (membingungkan)! Could you come and help me?
Confusing Correct! ‘Confusing’ means ‘membuat bingung.’ Therefore, “It is confusing.” means “Ini membingungkan.”[/explanation][/answer]
3. I was feeling (tertekan), so I stayed at home with hot chocolate and a good book.
Correct! ‘Depressed’ means ‘merasa tertekan.’ Therefore, “I am feeling depressed.” means “Saya merasa tertekan.”
4. That is the most (memalukan) photo! I look terrible!
Correct! ‘Embarassing’ means ‘membuat malu.’ Therefore, ’embarassing photo.’ means ‘foto yang membuat malu.’
5. Julie was so (kelelahan) after her exams, she spent the next three days sleeping.
Correct! ‘Exhausted’ means ‘merasa lelah.’
Therefore, “I was exhausted.” means “Saya kelelahan (merasa lelah).”
6. I tried all morning to send an email, but it wouldn’t work. I was so (frustrasi)!
Correct! ‘Frustrated’ means ‘merasa frustrasi.’ Therefore, “I was frustrated.” means “Saya merasa frustrasi.”
7. A nice hot bath is so (melegakan) after a long day.
Correct! ‘Relaxing’ means ‘membuat lega.’ Therefore, “It is relaxing.” means “Itu melegakan (membuat lega).”
8. I’m very (puas) that I managed to order the meal in French.
Correct! ‘Satisfied’ means ‘merasa puas.’ Therefore, “I am satisfied.” means “Saya (merasa) puas.”
9. It’s (mengejutkan) how many people don’t want to travel to another country.
Correct! ‘Surprising’ means ‘mengejutkan.’ Therefore, “It is surprising.” means “Itu mengejutkan (membuat terkejut).”
10. My job is really (melelahkan). I don’t get home until 10pm sometimes.
Correct! ‘Tiring’ means ‘melelahkan, membuat lelah.’ Therefore “It is tiring.” means “Itu melelahkan (membuat lelah).”

Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Saturday, April 1, 2017


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#EngClass: Participial adjective (3)

One of our followers asked the question above on Twitter. Do you have a similar question? Do you get confused as to when you should use present or past participle adjective? Kalau kamu masih tulis/bilang: “I’m interesting” saat mau menyatakan “Saya tertarik,” yuk baca lagi artikel ini sampai selesai.

Participle adjectives are verbs, often ends in -ing and -ed, which are used as adjectives.  There are two types of participles: present participles (v-ing) and past participles (v2). Example:

Present participle

Past participle











We use present particular adjectives (v-ing) to talk about person, thing, or situation which caused the feeling. Example:

  • “I am boring.”
    • “Aku membosankan, aku menimbulkan rasa bosan.”
  • “They are confusing.”
    • “Mereka membingungkan, mereka menimbulkan kebingungan.”
  • “The book is exciting.”
    • “Bukunya menarik. Bukunya membuat orang tertarik.”

We use past participle adjectives (v2) to talk about how someone feels. Example:

  • “I am bored.”
    • “Aku merasa bosan. Yang kurasakan adalah bosan.”
  • “They are confused.”
    • “Mereka kebingungan. Yang mereka rasakan adalah bingung.”
  • “She is very excited.”
    • “Dia sangat bersemangat. Yang dia rasakan adalah semangat.”

If we were to compare the two side by side:

Present participle

Past participle

Penyebab perasaan

Perasaan yang dirasa

[Me- -kan]

[ter-], [ke- -an]




Merasa terhibur

More examples:

Present participle

Past participle




(Merasa bosan)


(Membuat santai)


(Merasa santai)




(Merasa lelah)




(Merasa bingung)




(Merasa tertarik)

So, what do you think? I hope the explanation was clear enough. If you still have any question, feel free to leave a comment down below, or you can also mention us on twitter.

How about having a short quiz to see how well you understand the explanation given above? Look at these sentences and choose the correct answer.

  1. I was really (boring/bored) during the lecture. It was really (boring/bored).
  2. I bought a really (interesting/interested) book last night. If you’re (interesting/interested), I can lend it to you.
  3. I heard an (alarming/alarmed) noise last night, and it kept me (alarming/alarmed) all night.


  1. bored; boring.
  2. interesting; interested.
  3. alarming; alarmed.

Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, March 22, 2017

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#EngClass: Modal verb – Must

To continue our discussion on modal verb, this time, we’ll talk about “must”. “Must” is commonly used to express:

  • personal obligation,
  • necessity,
  • strong recommendation,
  • certainty.

Instead of “must”, native speakers from America usually prefer the more flexible form “have to”.


When to use “must”?

People generally use “must” to express personal obligation, something that the speaker thinks is necessary. Other than that, “must” is also used for the following purposes:


  1. To express obligation or duty.
    • Example:
      • You must wear a seat belt at all times.
  2. To emphasize the necessity of something.
    • Example:
      • You must give up smoking. It’s bad for you.
  3. To say that you’re sure that something is true.
    • Example:
      • It must be cold outside. It’s raining hard.
  4. To express positive logical assumptions.
    • Example:
      • She must have been at home. Her lights were on.
  5. To make a strong recommendation.
    • Example:
      • The ice cream here is delicious. You must try some.


How to use “must”?


  • Like every other modal verbs, “must” is followed by a main verb.
  • And to form a negative sentence, “not” is placed after the word “must”, before the main verb. It expresses prohibition.
  • “Must” is generally not used in interrogative sentences. For questions, it is more common to use “have to”.


  1. “Must” in expressing obligation or duty.
    • Example:
      • You must wear a seat belt at all times.
      • She must cook dinner every evening.
  2. “Must” in emphasizing the necessity of something.
    • Example:
      • You must give up smoking. It’s bad for you.
      • You must study the last two chapters before the test.
  3. “Must” in saying that you’re sure that something is true.
    • Example:
      • It must be cold outside. It’s raining hard.
      • She must be home. The lights are on.
  4. “Must” in expressing positive logical assumptions.
    • Example:
      • She must have been at home. Her lights were on.
      • There’s a missed call on my phone. He must have called last night.
  5. “Must” in making a strong recommendation.
    • Example:
      • The ice cream here is delicious. You must try some.
      • We really must get together for dinner sometime.


Present certainty and deduction

“Must” can also be used when you’re certain that something is true, based on evidence. In order to express present certainty, “must” is followed by “be” and a noun or an adjective.

S + must be + noun/adjective/v-ing/prepositional phrase.


  • She must be a teacher. She’s so wise. (noun: a teacher)
  • She must be cold. She’s shivering. (adjective: cold)
  • She must be singing. I can hear her voice. (present participle: singing)
  • She must be at her friend’s. Nobody is answering the door. (prepositional phrase: at her friend’s)


Logical assumptions and past certainty

“Must” is also used in expressing logical assumptions. To express logical assumptions, “must” is followed by “have” and “past participle”.

S + must have + V3


  • This must have been the book she was talking about. There is no other book with a red cover.
  • She must have won the lottery. She suddenly got a brand new car.


Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, January 25, 2017





#EngClass: Direct and indirect object

In this post, we are going to learn about what direct object and indirect object are, and how to identify and use them in a sentence.

Direct object

A direct object is a noun, a phrase, or a pronoun that follows a transitive verbA simple sentence containing a transitive verb and a direct object usually follows this formula:

  subject + transitive verb + direct object
  • Example:
    Sally buys a watch.



a watch


transitive verb

direct object

A direct object answers the question “what?” or “who?” in a sentence. The direct object in the example sentence above answers the question, “What does Sally buy?”

Indirect object

Pay attention to this sentence:

Evan gives his mother a gift.

“Evan” is the subject, “gives” is the transitive verb, but which is the direct object “his mother” or “a gift”? Let’s identify the direct object by asking the question “What does Evan give?” The answer is, “Evan gives a gift,” not “Evan gives his mother.”

So what is the role of “his mother” in that sentence? Yup, you guessed it, fellas, “his mother” acts as the indirect object of that sentence.

The indirect object of a sentence is the recipient of the direct object. It always comes between a transitive verb and a direct object. If a sentence contains an indirect object, it usually follows this formula:

  subject + transitive verb + indirect object + direct object 

An indirect object answers the question “to what/whom” or “for what/whom” an action is done. Let’s ask, “To whom Evan gives the gift?” The answer would be, “to his mother”. You can also see in the example sentence that “his mother” comes between the verb and the direct object. So, that is how you identify that “his mother” is the indirect object of that sentence.

An indirect object is basically a prepositional phrase in which the preposition “to” or “for” is not stated. If a sentence contains an indirect object, you can reform it following this formula:

  subject + transitive verb + direct object + to/for indirect object

So, you can also modify the example sentence into this form:

Evan gives a gift to his mother.

This modification is useful when the direct object is a pronoun instead of a noun. For example, you might say, “My sister doesn’t use her blue purse anymore, so she handed me it,” because you want to follow the first formula.


handed me it
subject transitive verb indirect object

direct object

You follow a valid formula, but that sentence sounds a little weird, doesn’t it, fellas? That’s when the second formula can be useful to smooth out your sentence so that it sounds more natural.

You can modify that sentence like this, “My sister don’t use her blue purse anymore, so she handed it to me.” Now the sentence sounds more natural and can be easily understood.


handed it to me
subject transitive verb direct object

prepositional phrase

So now you know what direct object and indirect object are, how to identify them, and how to form a sentence using both types of object. Understanding these grammar terms also helps you deal with grammar more easily in the future.


Compiled and written by @Fafafin for @EnglishTips4U on Thursday, January 12, 2016


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#EngClass: Modal Verbs

In today’s discussion on modal verbs, we’ll talk about the following points:

  • What are modal verbs?
  • How are modal verbs different from normal verbs?
  • What modal verbs are there in English?
  • What do modal verbs express?
  • How to use modal verbs?

What are modal verbs?

Modal verbs are special verbs which behave very irregularly in English. They behave very differently from normal verbs. Modal verbs modify main verbs which are positioned next to them.

How are modal verbs different from normal verbs?

Verb is the part of speech that expresses existence, action or occurrence. And the following are the differences that modal verbs have from normal verbs:

  1. Modal verbs do not take “-s” in the third person.
    • Example:
      She can sing very well.
      He should take a seat.
  2. We use “not” to make modal verbs negative, even in Simple Present and Simple Past.
    • Example:
      She might not call you tonight.
      We should not be here.
  3. Modal verbs are followed directly by another verb.
    • Example:
      He must finish his work soon.
      She will be home at 7 pm.
  4. They make questions by inversion.
    • Example:
      Affirmative: She can go…
      Interrogative: Can she go… ?
  5. Many modal verbs cannot be used in the past tenses or the future tenses.
    • Example:
      Wrong: He will can go with us.
      Wrong: She musted study very hard.

What do modal verbs express?

We use modal verbs to express various things, such as:

  1. We use “can” and “could” to talk about a skill or ability.
    • Example:
      He can build a house.
  2. We use “can”, “could” and “might” to talk about possibility and impossibility.
    • Example:
      We might get there at 9.30.
  3. We use “must”, “could”, “should” and “ought to” to say when something is necessary or unnecessary, whether it is an obligation.
    • Example:
      They must not be late to school.
  4. We use “could”, “should” and “ought to” to give advice.
    • Example:
      She should speak louder.
  5. We use “can”, “could” and “may” to ask for and give permission. We use them to say something is not allowed.
    • Example:
      He may not leave the house tonight.
  6. We use “will” and “would” to talk about habits or things we usually do or did in the past.
    • Example:
      You will always be in my heart.

What modal verbs are there in English?

Here’s a list of them:

Can                    Could                 Must

Should              May                    Might

Will                   Would                Shall

Ought to

Last but but not least,…

How do we use modal verbs?

  • Modal verb is followed directly by the infinitive of another verb.


  • To form a negative statement, “not” is added right after modal verb, right before the main verb.


  • We form an interrogative statement by inversion. Reverse the word structure by inverting the subject and the verb.


Sya: However, some also say that “need” is also often considered as modal.

Nowadays, this is not a common practice. Some would call “need” a semi-modal. Some other would think it’s outdated and formal.

“Need”, as a semi-modal, is mostly used in the negative form. It is to say that there is no obligation or necessity to do something. Example:

  • She need not thank me.

Notice how “need” does not take -s, and the verb which follows is a bare infinitive.

That’s a wrap for today’s discussion on “modal verbs”. In-depth discussions on each and every modals will be shared in the coming weeks.

Also check out past discussions on “modal verbs”, titles are listed below.

Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, January 11, 2017



#GrammarTrivia: Compound possession

Which one of these two statements is grammatically correct?

“After the election, Dan’s and Miley’s businesses went bankrupt.”


“After the election, Dan and Miley’s businesses went bankrupt.”

Before we answer the question, it was actually a trick question. Both sentences are grammatically correct depending on the context.

Possession by two people

If Dan and Miley own different businesses, “Dan’s and Miley’s” is the correct usage of possessive nouns. But if Dan and Miley share the same businesses, it should be “Dan and Miley’s”.

What if the businesses are owned by Dan and me (or any other possessive pronoun)? Then it should be “Dan’s and my businesses” regardless we share the same business or not. Or if you don’t have to explain that Dan is the other owner, simply use ‘our’.

Possession by more than two people

Let’s take it up a notch, shall we?

What if the businesses are owned by Dan, Miley, and me (or any other possessive pronoun)? The correct usage of compound possession is “Dan, Miley’s, and my business”. And if we don’t share the same businesses: “Dan’s, Miley’s, and my business”.

Compiled by @bintilvice at @EnglishTips4U on Friday, November 11, 2016



#EngClass: Transitive and intransitive verbs

In this post, we will talk about transitive and intransitive verb and how those two differ. Let’s cut to the chase!

Transitive Verb

A transitive verb requires an object.


“I carry a stick.”

In the sentence above, carry is the transitive verb and a stick is the noun that acts as the object in that sentence. The object following the transitive verb can be a noun, phrase, or pronoun that is affected by the action of the verb. It always answers the question “What?” – What do I carry? I carry a stick.  Using a transitive verb without an object will make an incomplete sentence – simply saying “I carry” without an object would not make sense. has a tip for remembering the name of the verb: think of a transitive verb as transferring their action to the object.

Intransitive Verb

An intransitive verb don’t have a direct object receiving the action. It can be followed by an adverb or a prepositional phrase, but it can never be followed by a noun.


“He sits.”

The sentence is complete without an object. Therefore, sit is an intransitive verb.

“He sits” can be followed by a prepositional phrase such as “on a wooden chair”. But using a noun immediately after the verb, e.g., “He sits a wooden chair” would make an incorrect sentence because the verb can’t take an object.

However, many verbs can be both transitive or intransitive, depending on what follows them in the sentence. In one sentence, a verb may require an object, while in others it does not require an object. A few examples of verb that can be transitive and intransitive: run, play, return.

“She runs across the street.”

In the sentence above, run acts as an intransitive verb because across the street is a prepositional phrase.

“Dad runs a stationery shop.”

Run is a transitive verb in this sentence because a stationery shop is a noun that acts as the object.

If we confuse transitive and intransitive verb, our sentence may be incomplete or incorrect. Therefore, it helps to know the difference between those two kinds of verb and how to use them in a sentence.


Compiled and written by @Fafafin for @EnglishTips4U on Thursday, November 10, 2016

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#EngTrivia: Adjectival Phrase

Heyya, fellas! How did your day go? For me, today was a fairly great day.

Oh hey! Did you notice the adjective phrase in my last sentence?

Alright, fellas! As promised last Wednesday, the topic of today’s session will be on the adjectival phrase. Let’s get things going, shall we?

Before we start… What is a phrase?

Example of a phrase:



What is an adjectival phrase?


Adjectival phrase is a group of words that functions as an adjective in a sentence; it tells us something about the noun it is modifying.

Adjectival phrase has an adjective as its head and preceded and/or followed by other words.

If a group of words modifies a noun, then it is an adjectival phrase.


Where is adjectival phrase in a sentence?


An adjectival phrase can go before a noun. It can also go after a linking verb like ‘be’.

The adjective in adjectival phrase may be accompanied by other words such as modifiers, determiners, or intensifiers.


Modifier is a word, phrase, or clause that functions as an adjective or adverb to provide additional information about another word or word group.

The pre-modifier of an adjective is:

  • positioned before the head adjective and,
  • always a simple adjective or an adverb phrase.

Example – simple adjective as modifier:



Example – adverb phrase as modifier: slide9


The post-modifier,

  • positioned after the head adjective,
  • can be an adverb phrase, a prepositional phrase, or infinitive.

Example – adverb phrase as modifier: slide11


Example – prepositional phrase as modifier:slide12


Example – infinitive as modifier: slide13



Determiner is a word or a group of words that specifies, identifies, or qualifies the noun or noun phrase that follows it.

Common determiners which modify adjectives are:

  • articles,
  • qualifier,
  • distributive,
  • demonstrative adjective, and
  • possessive adjective.

Example – articles as determiner: slide14


Example – qualifier as determiner: slide15


Example – distributive as determiner: slide16


Example – demonstrative adjective as determiner: slide17


Example – possessive adjective as determiner:




Intensifier is a word or phrase which emphasize or down-tone an adjective.

Intensifiers: very, quite, rather, somewhat, so, almost, fairly, really, pretty, a bit, a little, kind of, sort of, etc.

Example – intensifier which emphasize:slide19

Example – intensifier which down-tone:slide20


Oh wow! This turned out to be a fairly long session. We’ve now come towards the end of the session. Let’s see how we can form sentences with adjectival phrase.



That’s a wrap, fellas! I hope the explanation was clear enough. If you have any question, feel free to mention us on Twitter or leave a comment below this post.

Thanks for tuning in to today’s session. Have a good rest and see you again tomorrow. XOXO

Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, November 9, 2016.


Related post: #EngTrivia: How to use ‘Albeit’?

#EngClass: Subject complement

Complement is the word added to complete an incomplete sentence.

Subject complement is the word that follow a linking verb and identify or describe the subject.

Linking verb: is, am, are, was, were, appear, become, feel, look, remain, sound, taste, grow, etc.

There are two kinds of subject complements:

  1. If the subject complement is a noun or pronoun, it is a predicate nominative. Predicate nominatives (nouns and pronouns) explain the subject or give another name for the subject.
  2. If the subject complement is an adjective, it is a predicate adjective. Predicate adjective describe the subject.



  1. Joe is a gourmet.
    • noun subject complement (a gourmet) after verb be (is).
  2. Joe became a gourmet.
    • noun subject complement (a gourmet) after linking verb (became).
  3. The meatballs are delicious.
    • adjective subject complement (delicious) after verb of being (are).
  4. The meatballs taste delicious.
    • adjective subject complement (delicious) after linking verb (taste).



Task: Find the subject complement.

Hint: look for the linking verb to help you find the subject complement.

1. Ross seems worried.
‘Ross’ is the subject
‘seems’ is the linking verb
2. Some caterpillars become butterflies.
Some caterpillars
‘Some caterpillar’ is the subject
‘become’ is the linking verb
3. You look happy.
‘You’ is the subject
‘look’ is the linking verb
4. The man became furious at the delay.
The man
‘The man’ is the subject
‘became’ is the linking verb
at the delay
‘at the delay’ is the adverb
4. The man became furious at the delay.
The man
‘The man’ is the subject
‘became’ is the linking verb
at the delay
‘at the delay’ is the adverb
5. The chlorine in the pool smelled harsh.
The chlorine
‘The chlorine’ is the subject
in the pool
‘in the pool’ is an adverb phrase. In combination with ‘the chlorine’, they form a noun phrase
‘smelled’ is the linking verb
6. This bread tastes moldy to me.
This bread
‘This bread’ is the subject
‘tastes’ is the linking verb
to me
‘to me’ is an adverb phrase.

Compiled and written by @sherlydarmali for @EnglishTips4U on Sunday, November 6, 2016


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#EngTrivia: How to use ‘Albeit’?

Heyya, fellas! How was your day? Mine was great, albeit very tiring.

Now… if you ever wondered how to use the word ‘albeit’, today’s session is for you. Let’s start, shall we?

What does ‘albeit’ mean?



‘Albeit’ means:

  • though,
  • although,
  • even though,
  • despite (it) being.

However, ‘albeit’ is not interchangeable with those words.

A more accurate meaning of ‘albeit’ is: ‘although it is’ or ‘although it be’.

Example: slide2

How to use the word ‘albeit’?


‘Albeit’ is often used to introduce an adjectival phrase or an adverbial phrase which refers to the preceding noun or verb.

Example: slide4 slide5

Extra 1 – What is an adjectival phrase?

An adjectival phrase is a group of words that tells us something about the noun it is modifying.

For more information on Adjectival Phrase, head over to the following post: #EngTrivia: Adjectival Phrase




Extra 2 – What is an adverbial phrase?

An adverbial phrase is a group of words which play the role of an adverb. It describes when, where, or how something happens.



And that’s a wrap, fellas! I hope the explanation was not too confusing.

I’ll see you again next week. Take care! XOXO

Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, November 2, 2016.

#EngQuiz: Irregular Past Participle

Hi fellas, happy halloween! How was your weekend, spooky and scary enough? :)

Today we will talk about irregular past participle.

The past participle, also sometimes called the passive or perfect participle, is identical to past tense form (in -ed) in the case of regular verbs, but takes various forms in the case of irregular verbs.

To practice irregular past participle, I will give you some exercises.

Begin your response with “I have never … ”

E.g. Go to that clinic.

–> I have never gone to that clinic.

1. Wear a kimono. –> I have never …

2. Forget your name. –> I have never …

3. Build a house. –> I have never …

4. Feed a lion. –> I have never …

5. Hold a snake. –> I have never …

6. Steal anything. –> I have never …

7. Sleep in a tent. –> I have never …

8. Win a lottery. –> I have never …

9. Make apple pie. –> I have never …

10. Ride a horse. –> I have never …

11. Read that book. –> I have never …

12. Buy a designer bag. –> I have never …

13. Break a window. –> I have never …

14. Drive a truck. –> I have never …

15. See that movie. –> I have never …
Answers: 1. Worn; 2. Forgotten; 3. Built; 4. Fed; 5. Held; 6. Stolen; 7. Slept; 8. Won; 9. Made; 10. Ridden; 11. Read; 12. Bought; 13. Broken; 14. Driven; 15. Seen.
That’s all for today fellas. See you next sunday.

Compiled and written by @sherlydarmali for @EnglishTips4U on Sunday, October 30, 2016.

#EngClass: Everybody – Singular or Plural?

Is ‘everybody’ singular or plural? Do you refer to ‘everyone’ with ‘him/her’ or ‘them’?

Alright alright… Let’s resolve this confusion together, shall we?

First of all; ‘everybody’ is an indefinite pronoun. Indefinite pronouns refer to nonspecific persons or things. And these are indefinite pronouns:













We use them to refer to a total number of people, things and places. We write them as one word.

Some indefinite pronouns, despite the illogic, are always singular. One of them is ‘everybody’. In this particular post, we’ll specifically talk about one of the: ‘everybody’.


‘Everybody’ in formal English

While ‘everybody’ seems like a plural noun, since it refers to a crowd of people, it is actually a singular subject. It refers to ONE group of people.


We use ‘everybody’ with singular verbs.


  • Everybody knows the truth.
    • ‘knows’ is a singular verb

When we want to refer back to ‘everybody’ and we don’t know if it’s a group of males or females, we use ‘him or her’ and ‘his or her’.


  • Everybody has his or her own desk.
    • ‘his or her’ is a singular pronoun.

Okay. We hereby determine that ‘everybody’ is singular.



‘Everybody’ in informal English

Now, how many of you have HEARD of people referring back to ‘everybody’ by using ‘them‘?

As mentioned above, despite being illogical, it is grammatically correct to treat ‘everybody’ as singular, especially in formal English.

However, when people talk, logic wins, so you will hear plural pronouns such as ‘them’. We use ‘them’ in informal conversations.


  • Everybody was putting a smile on their face.
    • ‘their’ is a plural pronoun.


Anyone confused yet? So is ‘everybody’ singular or plural? Let’s clarify things up, shall we?

I hope that last image helped solve the confusion, fellas. Feel free to mention us or leave a comment if you have any question. We’ll solve it together.


Compiled and written by @miss_qiak for @EnglishTips4U on Wednesday, October 19, 2016


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