Wednesday, 11 January 2017


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Conditional Clauses are used to express that the action in the main clause (without if) can only take place if a certain condition (in the clause with if) is fulfilled. There are four types of Conditional Clauses.



Resultado de imagen de zero conditional form


1. For things that are always true.

Ex.: If you heat water, it boils.

2. For habits or things that usually happen, we can also use the present continuous in the if clause. In this case you can replace 'if' with 'when' and the meaning is the same.

Ex.: When I'm feeling sick, I go to the doctor.

3. To give instructions or invitations which depend on certain conditions we use the present simple + imperative.

Ex.: If you want to pass the exam, study hard.



Resultado de imagen de first conditional form

Listen to this song by Bruno Mars and find the different First Conditional Clauses.


This type of conditional is used to talk about future possibilities. 'Will' is a modal verb, but you can use other modal verbs, for example 'might' and 'could' in the result clause.

Ex.: If you ever find yourself stuck in the middle of the sea, I'll sail the world to find you.

Sometimes you can use 'if' to introduce a condition and 'whether' in the following cases:

1. To present two alternatives.

Ex.: Tell me whether you're coming to the concert or not.

2. After prepositions.

Ex.: Let's talk about whether Bruno Mars is a good singer.

3. Before infinitives.

Ex.: I don't know whether to go to the cinema.

4. When it starts the subject clause.

Ex.: Whether you love or hate him is none of my business.

When we use the first conditional clauses, we can also use 'unless'. This means 'except if' and is the negative of 'if'.

Ex.: Unless you study hard, you won't pass the exams.

CLICK HERE to practice the first conditional.



Resultado de imagen de second conditional form

Find Second Conditional Clauses in the following song by Beyonce:


This type is used for hypothetical situations in the present:

Ex.: If I were a boy even just for a day, I'd roll out of bed in the morning.

The order of the 'if' and the result clause is flexible, but if the 'if' clause is in the second place, the comma disappears.

Ex.: I'd roll out of bed in the morning if I were a boy even just for a day.

You can also use the past continuous + conditional with would.

Ex.: If you were looking at me in heaven, would you recognise me?

To do some exercises CLICK HERE.



Firstly, it's important to remember how the Past Perfect and the past conditional is formed:

Resultado de imagen de past perfect tense form


Now, we put together the two tenses and we get the 3rd Conditional:

Resultado de imagen de third conditional form

Next, try to find examples of this structure in the following song by Taylor Swift:


3rd Conditional is used to talk about hypothetical situations in the past. 

Ex.: If you had called me, you would have visited me.

CLICK HERE to practice with the 3rd Conditional.

Practice now with all the conditionals:

Finish the following sentences with a clause in the correct conditional:

If it is sunny  tomorrow .......................
If you sit in the sun too long ..............
If I were you .........
If she had studied harder ............
If I won the lottery ...........
If I hadn't gone to bed so late .......
If I hadn't come to London .......
If she hadn't stayed at home ........
If I go out tonight ......
If I were on holiday today ......
If I had listened to my mother .....
If it rains later .....
If I have enough money ....
If you don't wear a coat in the winter .......

If you want to learn more about advanced conditionals CLICK HERE

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