Modal verbs | English PPT | web4study

Modal verbs | English PPT

Modal verbs


Modal verbs

Use Modal verbs Examples
Ability Can,

could (past)

She can speak several languages.

She could speak several languages.

Possibility or certainty Must (95%)

Can (general statement)

Must have + past participle (past)

could, may might (less than 50%)

May/might/could +have +past participle (past)

You haven’t eaten all day. You must be hungry.

You can easily lose your way in the dark.

They hadn’t eaten all day. They must have been hungry.

You look happy. You must have heard the good news.

They might come later.

They may come by car.

If we don’t hurry we could be late.

They may have arrived hours ago

They might have arrived now.

They could have arrived hours ago.

Obligation Must, have to, Ought to

Had to (past)

You must be back by ten o’clock. (speaker’s authority)

You have to be back by ten o’clock.  (it’s obligatory)

He ought to pay for the broken window.

I had to wear a school uniform when I was a child.

Lack of obligation Don’t have to Tomorrow is Sunday, so I don’t have to wake up early.
Prohibition Mustn’t, cant, may not You mustn’t speak when the teacher is speaking.

You can’t park here, sir.

You may not smoke in this house.

Permission Can, may Can I borrow our pen?

May I offer you a drink?




  • In each of the following passages, choose one of the three words or phrases to fill the gaps: must don’t have to, mustn’t.
  1. a) As it’s your first day, I‘ll just show you what to do. Obviously, you 1.______________ make the beds and hoover the carpet, and you 2. ______________ forget to check the cupboards in case the guests have left anything. If one of the beds hasn’t been used, you 3______________ change the sheets, but you 4. ____________________ tidy it up so that it looks right. If the guest is about to leave, you 5._________________ check the mini-bar and tell reception if anything has been used so that they can put it in the bill. In the bathroom, you 6. __________________ change all the towels and provide new soap and shampoo and make sure that everything thing is clean. If any of the light bulbs are broken, you 7_________________ replace them yourself-you just ring maintenance and they will take care of it.
  • Choose one of the three words or phrases to fill the gaps: have to, don’t have to shouldn’t.
  1. b) The hotel is in the west end, so a lot of our guests want to go out to shows in London, and I 1. ____________ try and arrange bookings for them. We have special arrangements with some of the cinemas and theatres, so that means our guests 2. _____________ queue up for the tickets and they 3.________________ pay more than they should, which is good for them. But with some of the others- especially the very popular musicals- we 4.________________ use agencies, and that means that guests 5.______________ pay a lot of extra. Personally I think that the agencies 6._________________ charge so much, but they always say that the guests 7.______________ make bookings at the last minute.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *