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Do you mind my ASKING you - do you know what a GERUND is?
I’m THINKING it may be more complicated than you think.
All gerunds end in -ING, but...not all words that end in -ING are gerunds!
A gerund is a noun you make from a verb by adding -ING.
This means you can use a gerund in all the places you typically use nouns.
They can be subjects, direct objects, indirect objects, objects of prepositions...
let’s see some examples:
I love to read.
Let’s make this verb “to read” into a gerund by adding -ING.
“Reading” is a gerund - if we use it as a noun.
We can use the word “reading” as the subject of a sentence:
Reading was my favourite activity as a child.
We can use it as the direct object in this sentence:
I still love reading now that I am all grown up.
Here it is as an indirect object: As a struggling student, he gave reading a try.
You may also see a gerund as the object of a preposition.
For example: His love for reading grew over time.
Don’t let all these examples make you think EVERYTHING is a gerund.
Remember: -ING words are gerunds when they act like a noun.
But some words ending in -ing are playing a different role.
A PRESENT PARTICIPLE.
Now here’s where it might be a little confusing.
You form a present participle from a verb by adding the ending -ING,
just like how you make a gerund.
But rather than acting as a noun, a present participle usually acts like a verb tense:
I am thinking.
The boy was sleeping.
Present Participles can also be used as adjectives - The laughing child ran across the lawn.
Quick test.
Which of the following are gerunds?
I am wishing for a new adventure.
NO. Present Participle.
I love wishing on the first star.
YES. Gerund.
Wishing is the direct object here
What do I love? Wishing.
He was walking home from school when he saw a strange object in the sky.
NO. Present Participle.
Walking is good exercise.
YES. Gerund.
Walking is the subject of the sentence.
I’m walking here!
Present participle.
You were talking in your sleep.
Present participle
Texting and driving are two activities that should NOT go together.
Gerund!
In fact, two gerunds!!
That should NOT go together.
I’m serious.
Stop doing that! It’s VERY dangerous.
Now.
I have a challenge for you.
In the comment section below, I’d like you to write two sentences.
The first sentence should contain a gerund,
and the second sentence should have a present participle.
Let’s see how creative you can be!
When I say “Subscribing to Socratica is a wonderful way to spend your time”...
SUBSCRIBING is a gerund.
A most excellent gerund.
Really, the best gerund of them all.
Don’t you think so?
Try it out and see.
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What is a Gerund vs Present Participle | Basic English Grammar Rules | ESL | SAT | TOEFL

204 Folder Collection
林宜悉 published on March 7, 2020
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