Grammar - Pre-Intermediate
A zero conditional sentence is made up of two halves:
We use this structure when we describe what always happens as a result of something.
It is often used to describe scientific rules which are, by definition, unchanging...so the results always happen the same.
If you take ice out of the fridge in summer, it melts.
We can also use the zero conditional to say what we do as a rule in certain situations. Here, we are not talking about what we do in a particular, specific situation (e.g. tonight, tomorrow) but what we always do in these conditions.
If I get a headache, I go and lie down.
A first conditional sentence is comprised of two halves.
We use the first conditional to say what we will do in a certain situation in the future.
If it rains tomorrow, I will stay at home and paint the kitchen.
The negative uses won't.
She won't get to know him if he doesn't come!
Don't use will with if.
If I see him, I will tell him.
Note. Compare the zero and first conditional. In the first sentence, we are talking about what you always do, it's your rule, if you like. In the second sentence, however, it is what you will do tonight, on that one specific occasion.
If there's nothing in my fridge, I ring for pizza.
There are other expressions in English that are followed by the present simple in the same way as "if" is in first conditional sentences.
Meaning: except if.
I'll stay in a hotel, unless Joan lets me stay in her house for a few days.
To do something because you think something else will happen:
I'll take my credit card in case we see something we want to buy.
This means "only if".
I'll lend you this $10 provided (that) you pay it back by Wednesday.
Meaning: up to the point.
I'll wait in the hotel until you arrive.
As Soon As
We use "as soon as" to talk about something happening immediately after. Compare how "when" and "as soon as" are used:
I'll call you when my husband comes home. (I might wait ten minutes)
All nouns in English are divided into countable or uncountable.
Countable nouns are things like apples or cars which we can count and have plural forms.
He ate 6 apples.
Uncountable nouns are things like water and music which we can't count and don't have plurals.
She drank a lot of water.
We cannot say:
Here are some examples of countable and uncountable nouns in English:
Some nouns can be countable and uncountable but it changes the meaning:
How much chicken? means How much of a large chicken? What size piece do you want?
When we know if a noun is countable or uncountable, we then use different expressions to ask questions, to say we have a little or a lot of it. Look at this table:
How many children does she have?
He has a lot of trees in his garden.
She only has a few apples so we need to go shopping.
Q: Do you have many pictures in your house?
Q: Do you have much land on your farm?
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