Hello, and welcome to The English Grammar Guide with me, Dara, from freespiritenglish.com!
This is the first part of our look at the first conditional. Today, we’re going to look at some sample sentences using the first conditional, and then we’ll examine its structure.
Here’s one example:
- If I see Paul, I will tell him to call you.
Or, more naturally:
- a) If I see Paul, I’ll tell him to call you.
- b) If it rains, I’ll use my umbrella.
- c) If Fin proposes to Rachael, she’ll say yes!
So, let’s look at some of those examples more carefully. Each of those examples had two parts: a condition and a result:
- If it rains (condition), I will use an umbrella (result).
So, look at this sentence again. Which part is the condition? That’s right. The condition is: If I see Paul. And the result? I’ll tell him to call you. To make the condition, we use the present simple (I see Paul). To make the result, we use will + verb (I will tell).
You can also say the result first and the condition second, like this:
- I’ll tell Paul to call you if I see him.
Here, the result is first (I’ll tell Paul to call you) and the condition is second (if I see him). Notice that the condition still takes the present simple (if I see), and the result still takes will + verb (I will tell). Also, notice the comma disappears.
Let’s wrap things up by looking at a few more examples:
- If the shark catches the swimmer, it’ll eat him!
- The shark will eat the swimmer if he catches him!
- If Jeff doesn’t sell any care this month, he won’t get a bonus!
- Jeff won’t get a bonus if he doesn’t sell any cars this month.
- Smith, wake up! If you don’t focus on your studies, you won’t get into university!
- Smith, wake up! You won’t get into university if you don’t focus on your studies!
OK, that’s a lot of information for one video, so let’s practice. Why don’t you make your own first conditional sentences in the comments below? I look forward to reading them!