CAN and MAY at School – Global-Learning.ro
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CAN and MAY at School

The school starts today!  You can do many great things!

Someone said: “One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.”

So, let’s start together!

Mum, today is the first day of school, I can’t be late and I can’t find my schoolbag!

Look under your desk, it can be there, you always keep it there!

And my cap? I can’t find anything now!

Can you wait a few minutes, please?  I’ll help you!

At school, the teacher asks children:

T: What do you like most at school?

Jim: I like maths and art. I can do fast calculation and I can paint.

T: Which one do you like more?

Jim: Oh, I love art. I could paint for hours without getting bored.

Mary: And I love music classes.  I can sing, but I can’t play an instrument very well. I take guitar courses.

John: May I go to the toilet, teacher?

T: Of course you may! Go!

Dan: Teacher, I can run 100m in 7 seconds.

Bobby: And I can swim! I took swimming classes on holiday.

Anne: And I can ski and skate! Last winter I went skating a lot.

Teacher: I could ski when I was a child!

Jake: Teacher, I can speak French! I am a beginner now. But I learn something every day. I have a friend in France and I want to visit him.

Teacher: That’s great, Jake. We start French classes this year. So you can learn faster.

Anne: You could speak with him over the internet. It helps.

T: So, you can do so many great things! I am very proud of you, my dears!!

And now, the lesson:

CAN / COULD  = a putea

Can are aceeași formă pentru toate persoanele la indicativ prezent.

I, you, she, he, it, we, you, they can

Când negăm folosim cannot scris legat, sau forma scurtă can’t

Când întrebăm, folosim can în fața subiectului:

Can I go out?

Can este întotdeauna urmat de verb la forma de infinitiv (adică aceea din dicționar: be, go, tell, have…)

Could este forma de trecut a lui “Can”, și de subjonctiv-condițional. Se folosește pentru toate persoanele:

I, you, she, he, it, we, you,they could/couldn’t

Using can or could we express:

(Cu can sau could poți exprima):

1) Ability/ Capacity to do something (Capacitatea (fizică sau intelectuală) de a face ceva, o acțiune. Adică abilitatea.)

Mary can sing, but she can’t play an instrument very well.

 I could ski when I was a child!

Puteam să schiez (știam să schiez) când eram copil.

We can replace the verb can or could with “be able to”, “be capable of”, or “know how to”.

Can/could = be able to”, “be capable of”, or “know how to”.

And I can ski and skate!

And I am able to ski and skate!

2) Permission in a familiar way.

Familiar: Can I go out, mum?

Permission in a formal way:

John: May I go to the toilet, teacher?

(folosim Can pentru a exprima permisiunea într-un mod familiar.)

“May” se folosește pentru a exprima o permisiune, a cere voie, dar la un grad mai înalt de politețe).

We use could to express permission in past:

(Folosim Could pentru a exprima permisiunea în trecut.)

On holidays we all could sleep until 10 o’clock. – In vacanțe aveam voie să dormim până la ora 10.

3) Possibility, Supposition

(Posibilitatea, presupunerea.)

I am late, all my classmates can be there now. – Am întârziat, e posibil ca toți colegii mei de clasa să fie acolo, acum.

He could be late. E posibil să întârzie.

It could rain today. Ar putea ploua astăzi.

4) Request (for a polite request could is better than can)

(Când exprimăm o cerere, o rugăminte could este mai politicos decât can.)

Can you wait a few minutes? – Poți să aștepți câteva minute?

Could you help me, please?

5) Could + have + past participle – to express that something could have been done in the past, but it wasn’t.

(Could urmat de have și de participiul trecut este folosit când exprimăm faptul că în trecut ceva se putea face, dar nu s-a făcut)

He is my deskmate and my friend, he could have helped me, but he didn’t.

El îmi este coleg de bancă și prieten, ar fi putut să mă ajute, dar nu a făcut-o.

MAY / MIGHT used to express permission in a formal way, it is a polite way to speak.

(a putea, a avea voie, a cere sau a acorda permisiunea într-un mod politicos, oficial)

May I say something? – Îmi permiteți să spun ceva?

Yes, you may. – Sigur că da.

When the first person (I) offers to help or something else.

May I help you? Îmi permiți să te ajut?

Might – the past form of may expresses also the permission but this way:

exprimă la fel permisiunea, dar în felul următor:

Might I go out? – Is there a possibility for me to go out? (Aș putea oare ieși?)

You might not go in there. – I think you are not allowed to enter.

(Cred că nu ai voie să intri acolo)

They might be all in front of the school now. S-ar putea să fie toți în fața școlii acum.

May / Might + bare form of infinitive expresses that something is possible to happen in present or in future (at or after the moment of speaking).

– May / Might + verbul la infinitiv arată că ceva este posibil să se întâmple în prezent sau în viitor (adică în sau după momentul vorbirii).

Mum,  uncle George may come today . – Mamă, unchiul George poate veni azi.

I don’t know, he might come tomorrow. – Nu știu… s-ar putea să vină mâine.

Interrogative and negative form of may expressing possibility (may not) are replaced by:

“do you think + present / future” or

“be likely + infinitive”.

La întrebări sau la formele negative, “May” exprimând posibilitatea este înlocuit de construcțiile “do you think + prezent / viitor” sau “be likely + infinitiv”.

Do you think uncle George will come today? – Crezi că unchiul George o să vină astăzi?

Mum, is uncle George likely to come today? – Crezi că unchiul George o să vină astăzi?

Exercises:

Complete the following sentences with can, could, may, might…

  1. Look under your desk, it ….. be there, you always keep it there!
  2. And my cap? I …..find anything now!
  3. I …. do fast calculation and I …. paint.
  4. I …… ski when I was a child!
  5. …. I go out, mum?
  6. John: …. I go to the toilet, teacher?
  7. You …. speak with him over the internet. It helps.
  8. On holidays we all ….. sleep until 10 o’clock.
  9. I am late, all my classmates …. be there now.
  10. He …. be late.
  11. It ….. rain today.
  12. ….. you wait a few minutes?
  13. …… you help me, please?
  14. He is my deskmate and my friend, he ….. have helped me, but he didn’t.
  15. ….. I say something?
  16. You …… not go in there.

Answers:

  1. can
  2. can’t
  3. can, can
  4. could
  5. Can
  6. May
  7. could
  8. could
  9. can
  10. could
  11. could
  12. Can
  13. Could
  14. could
  15. May
  16. might

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