Lesson 26 – Writing Class – The infinitive




IN YOUR LANGUAGE (Top right > Select language > Click on the flags).






  • I’ve decided to…
  • A writing class
  • Do you mean…?
  • I´m learning a lot
  • Is going very well.
  • To enjoy reading
  • I’m writing
  • I think I would like
  • To take up a lot of time
  • When are you thinking of…?
  • I could host it here
  • I don’t mind
  • I do worry
  • To burn yourself out
  • I would have thought…
  • Want to relax
  • Once you’ve finished work
  • I’m so excited
  • Getting a little carried away
  • You´re passion is amazing
  • Already established
  • To see how it goes
  • The best thing to do
  • For the moment
  • Once you find your pace
  • Setting up
  • What do you think?
  • To suggest going for
  • Something to eat
  • I could go for…
  • I’ll give her a call



– Writing class –




Lesson 26 – Writing Class

Polly: I’ve decided to start a writing class.

Jeff: Do you mean start attending one? Or do you want to start a writing class up?

Polly: Well, I’m learning a lot from all the plays that I’m reading. The theatre is going very well indeed. Our director enjoys reading the plays that I’m writing. I think I would like to start one up.

Jeff: That’s going to take up a lot of time. When are you thinking of doing it?

Polly: I thought that Wednesday would be a good night for it. I could host it here, if you don’t mind of course.

Jeff: I don’t mind at all but I do worry that you are going to burn yourself out. Wednesday is the middle of the working week. I would have thought that you would want to relax once you´ve finished work.

Polly: Maybe you’re right. I´m just so excited about this. I think that I am getting a little carried away.

Jeff: You’re passion is amazing and I love the stuff that you have written so far. Why don’t you attend an already established writing class and see how it goes?

Polly: I guess that would be the best thing to do for the moment.

Jeff: Once you find your pace, you can think again about setting up your own writing class. What do you think?

Polly: I think that that is a much better idea. Oh, Karen suggested going for something to eat tonight. Do you fancy it?

Jeff: I reckon I could go for some chinese tonight. I´ll give her a call.




Interactive Video Comprehension Quiz 1


Summary Statements Comprehension Quiz 2


Drag and Drop Quiz 3: 




 Verbs + Infinitive

An infinitive is a verbal form that goes after to, almost always begins with followed by the simple form of the verb. Infinitives can be used as names, adjectives or adverbs and as an infinitive is not a verb, we add s, es, ed or ing at the end. The formula for an infinitive is:


To + Verb = Infinitive

I want to try the lobster.

She likes to have a back up plan.


This is called the infinitive with to. If it is a form without to, it is known as infinitive without to. When there are two verbs together in a sentence, the form of the second verb is determined by the first verb. The infinitives can not be used after modal auxiliaries:

shall, should, will, would, may, must, might, do, did, can, could…

might try the lobster.

You should have a back up plan.

And they can be used after certain verbs followed by an object:

let, make, see, hear, feel…

see you like the lobster.

She let us know the plan.


Normally we use the -ing form after sense verbs:

heard you like playing football.

We saw him stealing the purse.


In the passive the infinitive with to must be used:

He was heard to say he hated football.

She was seen to cry.


Verb + -ing

The base of a verb is called infinitive and can change the spelling according to the time it is used. In this case we are going to analyse the gerund. The gerund refers to things that are still happening and to build it, the ending -ing is added to the infinitive. The ending -ing shows a progressive aspect, an action that is, was, has been, had been, will be in progress at a particular time or during a particular period of time. It may suggest that the action is, was, has been, had been, will be long or uninterrupted.


Verbs finished with a mute -e

If the verb ends in an -e that is not pronounced, the -e is removed and -ing is added. The pronunciation of the vowel affected by the -e remains the same:



Move  –> Moving

Save –> Saving


Finished verbs -ee, -ye, and -oe keep the -e and add the -ing:

Glue –> Glueing

Eye –> Eyeing

Hoe  –> Hoeing


Finished verbs with vowel more -l

When the verb ends in vowel + l, you double the l before adding the ending -ing:



Duel  –> Duelling

Fuel –> Fuelling


Finished verbs with a single vowel more consonant

For words that end in a single vowel + consonant and the tonic syllable is the last, the final consonant is doubled before adding -ing.



Submit –> Submitting

Plan –> Planning


However, if the verb ends with a vowel + consonant and the tonic syllable is not the last of the word, the final consonant is not doubled:



Allow –> Allowing

Visit  –> Visiting


Finished verbs by two vowels more consonant

Verbs that end with two vowels and a consonant do not double the final consonant:



Feel –> Feeling

Scour –>  Scouring


Finished verbs in -c

A -c at the end of the verb adds a -k e -ing.



Panic  –> Panicking

Frolic  –>  Frolicking


Gerunds and infinitives

The gerund can also be used as a name. A gerund can refer to the past, present and future. Identifies with -ing and names an activity more than a person or thing. A gerund can appear at the beginning of a sentence:

Smoking is bad for you.

Running keeps me very fit.


It can follow a verb:

I quit smoking last week.

We started running together.


Also following a preposition:

I look forward to helping you quit smoking.

We like running once a week.


Gerunds can be negative by adding not:

Not smoking is better for you.

Thanks to not running once a week, I have become unfit.


An infinitive is the name assigned to the verb form that usually refers to events and actions and that may not require a specific or real time. It is formed with verbal to + base. Infinitives can follow a verb:

He always refuses to listen. 

Sarah agreed to stop.


They can also be used at the beginning of a sentence:

To thank him she bought dinner.

To entertain the children, they hired a clown.


An adverb that modifies the verb:

He managed to remain unemotional.

Steven refused to stop being reckless.


Some verbs are followed directly by a noun or pronoun and then an infinitive:

Sarah encouraged Steven to travel to Spain.

He challenged Peter to write a new book.


Some verbs can be followed by an infinitive or gerund without causing any change in the meaning:

I hate to waste good food.

I hate wasting good food.


Some verbs can be followed by an infinitive or a gerund with a change of meaning:

I stopped to buy chocolate.

I stopped buying chocolate.


Infinitives can be negative by adding not:

Sarah encouraged Steven not to travel to Spain.

The most important thing is not to give up.



  • Related Pronunciation Video Lesson and interactive exercise(s):




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