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The Verb - To Be

The Verb - To Be

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The verb “to be”

Part 1:Declarative Statements



Hello! In this lesson, we will learn how to conjugate and use the verb “to be”. This is by far the most commonly used verb in English and forms much of the structure of English conversation.

 

There are many uses for the verb “to be”, but we will start with the most basic in this lesson and we will explore many other uses in future lessons. Conjugating a verb refers to showing all the possible forms that a verb may take in a particular verb tense. First, let us look at how the verb “to be” is conjugated in the present tense.

To Be (present tense)

I am

you are

he is

she is

we are

they are



Notice how each pronoun has a corresponding conjugation of the verb. For example, the conjugation of the verb “to be” for the pronoun “I” is “am”, and for the pronoun “we” is “are”. You must memorize each of these conjugations because you will use them in every English conversation that you ever have.

In its most basic form , the verb “to be” is used to make a declarative statement, which is a statement of fact. Some examples of using the verb “to be” to make a declarative statement are:

“I am hungry.”

“She is pretty.”

“We are tired.”

“They are old.”

Each of these sentences is used to make a statement about the current state of whomever the sentence's pronoun refers to. The basic structure of these declarative statements is always the same: pronoun-verb-description of state.

Now that we have a basic understanding of how to conjugate and use the verb “to be”, let us become more familiar with its use by looking at several examples. We will start with an example that we have already seen, “I am hungry.” In this sentence, the pronoun “I” is precedes “am” which is the present tense conjugation of the verb “to be”. Let us substitute each of the personal pronouns and their corresponding conjugation in this same sentence:

“I am hungry.”

“You are hungry.”

“He is hungry.”

“She is hungry.”

“We are hungry.”

“They are hungry.”

We can see from this exercise that we can easily change the sentence to refer to the correct individual or group that we wish. The only difference between these sentences is the different personal pronouns and corresponding conjugation of the verb “to be”.

Let us look now at another example of this using the sentence, “I am tired.”
“I am tired.”
“You are tired.”
“He is tired.”
“She is tired.”
“We are tired.”
“They are tired.”

Again, we note that the only difference between these sentences is the different personal pronouns and corresponding conjugation of the verb “to be”.
Now that you have a basic understanding of creating declarative statements with the verb “to be”, it is your turn to practice speaking in English.