Cheat sheet #1 – Past Simple -ed endings
So many students have problems remembering how to properly spell and pronounce the ending of past simple verbs. But do not worry, it is really very simple and we will show you how.
Firstly, this rule does not apply to irregular verbs.
|Examples of irregular verbs and their past equivalent|
As you can see there are no set rules for these verbs and they have to be memorised. This will happen naturally as you learn English as most irregular verbs are quite common.
Image Source: http://www.englishandculture.com/English-phrasal-verb-app-verb-dive-blog/bid/93785/Don-t-Get-Kicked-Out-Phrasal-Verb-of-the-Day
Most verbs add -ed to the end of the word.
Multi-syllable verbs and those ending in a vowel simply add -ed. Even many one-syllable verbs (longer than three letters) end simply by adding -ed.
If it is a short hard verb that ends in a single consonant, then you usually need to add the last consonant as well as -ed.
If the verb already ends in -e, you just add -d.
If the verb ends in -y, we change it to -i and add -ed.
Generally, those are the rules in an easy to understand way, and you will learn the rest by experience. Now go out and find exceptions!
More students struggle with pronunciation than with spelling, but again I am going to simplify things into an easy to understand system. At the end, I will explain how you do not even need to remember these lists, they are just to help you understand.
If you are not aware of the phonetic alphabet, look here, where I write in /—/ is the sound of the word, not the spelling. In fact, spelling is irrelevant here, and only the sound is important.
|Words ending with hard, consonant sounds
|Words ending with soft, vocal sounds
|Words ending in /-t/ or /-d/
Practise saying these sets of words while you hold your hand on your throat. If it vibrates at the end of the word then it’s vocal, and belongs in the second column. If it does not then it belongs in the first column. However, try saying the words with both /-t/ and /-d/ and you will probably see that the difference is very small.
Therefore, the only important rule to remember is:
/tɪd/ and /dɪd/
Written by James R. McCance for Aston School
- Cheat sheet #2 – What do grammar words in tenses mean?
- Cheat sheet #3 – The passive tenses
- Cheat sheet #4 – Talking about now
- Cheat sheet #5 – Talking about the recent past
- Cheat sheet #6 – Talking about future plans
- Cheat sheet #7 – Conditionals