Grammar Lessons: The Verb To be

The Verb To Be
Verb to Be: I am a DJ

What’s the Verb To Be?

The verb to has many uses, you can use to make sentences:

  • to talk about the past (I was a janitor)
  • to talk about actions that are taking place in this moment (I am writing)
  • to talk about actions that will take place in the future (I will be a good student)
  • You can also use the verb to be for the passive voice in english (the house was built by me)

Verb To Be Basic Usage

The Verb to Be is used to say something about a person, thing, or state, to show a permanent or temporary quality, state, job.


He is rich
It is cold today
I am Andy
We are friends
They are cool
You are fantastic

How to Make Contractions

Uncontracted Form Contracted Form
 I am a janitor I’m a janitor
You are funnyYou’re funny
she is my friendShe’s my friend
he is a doctorHe’s a doctor
it is my dogIt’s my dog
We are at homeWe’re home
They are crazyThey’re crazy

How to Make Negative Forms

 Positive  Negative  Contracted Form
 I am janitor  I am not a janitor  I‘m not a janitor
 You are funny  You are not funny  You aren’t funny
 She is my friend  She is not my friend  She isn’t my friend
 He is a doctor   He is not a doctor   He isn’t a doctor
 It is my dog  It is not my dog  It isn’t my dog
We are at home  We are not at home  We aren’t at home
They are crazy They are not crazy They aren’t crazy

 How to Make Questions

Positive Questions
 I am a janitorAm I a janitor?
You are funnyAre you funny
she is my friendIs she my friend?
he is a doctorIs he a doctor?
it is my dogIs it my dog?
We are at homeAre we home?
They are crazyAre they crazy?

Verb be followed by a to infinitive

We use some nouns with the verb be followed by a to infinitive:

The only way is to start all over again.
His answer is to work a bit harder.
Her only hope was to buy a new house as soon as possible.
The easiest thing would be to ask your brother.

Video Explanations

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Verb to be Quiz

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