Deprecated: iconv_set_encoding(): Use of iconv.internal_encoding is deprecated in /home/studyvid/public_html/libraries/joomla/string/string.php on line 28

Deprecated: iconv_set_encoding(): Use of iconv.input_encoding is deprecated in /home/studyvid/public_html/libraries/joomla/string/string.php on line 29

Deprecated: iconv_set_encoding(): Use of iconv.output_encoding is deprecated in /home/studyvid/public_html/libraries/joomla/string/string.php on line 30

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /home/studyvid/public_html/libraries/joomla/filter/input.php on line 652
When

When

Alternative flash content

Requirements

When


In this lesson, we will learn to use the question word "when". In previous lessons, we have learned other question words. We use the question word "when" to inquire about the time at which something takes place. We use the same word for past, present, and future.

In forming a question with the question word "when", we usually place the word "when" at the beginning of the question. For example, we can use the question word to find out more information about something that occurred in the past. We might ask "When did David and Jennifer dance?" A possible response for this question might be "David and Jennifer danced last night.".We might ask "When did the student learn English?", which might elicit a span of time as a response.  We could ask "When did you cook rice?", which might elicit a specific time during the day.

We can also use the question word "when" to find out more about ongoing or repetitious activities.  A question using the question word "when" might be "When do you work?". A possible answer might be "I work every day.". Or we might ask "When does the boy play football?", which might elicit an answer like "He plays football every day.".

In an upcoming lesson, we will learn to use the question word "when" to ask about events in the future.

Now that you know how to use the question word "when", listen to the following dialog.  Jennifer saw David's dirty sports clothes. She wants to know when he played football and baseball.

Jennifer: Did you play football and baseball this week?

David: Yes.

Jennifer: When did you play football?

David:  I played football yesterday afternoon.

Jennifer:  When did you play baseball?

David: I played baseball last night.

Jennifer: When did you work?

David: I didn't. I played.

Good. Now that you have heard how the question word "when" is used in a conversation, let us look at David's and Jennifer's sentences more carefully.
At first Jennifer asks David" Did you play football and baseball last week?". Notice that the focus of the question is on only one particular time, and it does not ask for clarification of the time. David answers "Yes.". He might have answered "Yes, I played football and baseball this week." or "Yes, I did.".
Jennifer gets more information by asking "When did you play football?". Since this question requires a time expression in response, David replies "I played football yesterday afternoon.". A short answer would have sufficed. He might have answered "Yesterday afternoon.".

Jennifer then asks "When did you play baseball?". Again, since the question requires a time expression in response, David answers "I played baseball last night.".  He could have responded with the short answer "Last night.".

Jennifer asks David 'When did you work?". Since David cannot give a time, he responds "I didn't. I played.". He might also have responded "I didn't work yesterday. I played.".

Notice that we form a question with the question word "when" by placing "when" at the beginning of the question.
Now that we are able to understand the use of this question word, let us listen to the dialog again. Pay special attention to the use of the question word "when".

Jennifer: Did you play football and baseball this week?

David: Yes.

Jennifer:  When did you play football?

David:  I played football yesterday afternoon.

Jennifer:  When did you play baseball?

David: I played baseball last night.

Jennifer: When did you work?

David: I didn't. I played.

We notice that the question word "when" is placed at the beginning of a question. It can be used for past, ongoing, regularly occurring, or future events. It does not change form.

Excellent! Now that you are acquainted with the usage of the question word "when", you can use it in your English conversations to find out about events that are occurring in the world. Start using it today, and enjoy your conversations in English.