Modal verbs are used to talk about ability, possibility, obligation, prohibition, or to make requests or offers.
Modal verb + Verb (bare infinitive)
I can play the piano very well.
Can I go now?
It can be a very good day tomorrow.
I can help you with this homework. Don’t worry!
Can you please pass me the salt?
Ability in the past
I could play the piano well when I was 9.
Excuse me, could I come in?
A hailstorm could come here tomorrow.
No problem. I could give you a lift.
Could you please move to the next slide?
May I leave early?
Astronauts may discover life in other planets.
Might I take you home?
I might visit him tomorrow if the weather is nice.
You must do homework.
He must be at the cinema now. He told me about that yesterday.
You mustn’t play here. It’s dangerous.
The weather forecast predicts that it’ll rain tonight.
I’ll finish all the homework by Friday.
I’ll lend you some money.
Will you please give me that book?
Used as the past form of “will”
My dad said that he would give me some toys on my birthday.
Polite request/ demand
Would you mind closing the door, please?
This time tomorrow I shall be in London.
Shall we discuss this further with him?
You should see the doctor. It’s swollen.
The project should be done before May.
Should I call her to say sorry?
You ought to say good bye to your parents when you leave.
You ought to sleep early. You look really tired.
Used to talk about something not necessary
You needn’t give him any advice. He won’t listen.
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