Part of Speech (POS)

Part 3


A verb is one of the main parts of a sentence or question in English. You can’t have a sentence or a question without a verb! That’s how important these “action” parts of speech are.

The verb signals an action, an occurrence, or a state of being. Verbs always express activity.

Physical verbs e.g., –

● Let’s run to the corner and back.

● Call me when you’re finished at work.

Mental verbs e.g., – Mental verbs have meanings that are related to concepts such as discovering, understanding, thinking or planning.
e.g., – I know the answer.
Do you believe everything people tell you?

Know = mental verb
Believe = mental verb

Types of Verbs

1. Action verbs = A verb that expresses physical or mental action. e.g., – Larry Walked to school. Larry thought about the math problem.
Walked = action verb
Thought = action verb

2. Transitive verbs = A verb that needs a direct object to complete its meaning. e.g., – Tom kicked John under the table.

Kicked = Transitive verb
John = direct object

3. Intransitive verbs = A verb that does not take a direct object. There’s no word in the sentence that tells who or what received the action. e.g., – She grew up.

She = subject
“grew up” = intransitive verb

4. Auxiliary verbs = They help to form the various tenses, moods and voices of other verbs. e.g.,  – be, do, and have.

Be: I am taking a bath. (Progressive sentence)
Be: I was given a free meal. (Passive sentence)
Do: I do not know the truth. (Negative sentence)
Do you want to have another one? (Used in questions)
Have: I have been following you for a mile. (Used in the perfect sentences)

5. Stative verbs = verbs that express a state rather than an action. They usually relate to thoughts, emotions, relationships, senses, states of being and measurements. e.g., – think, see and taste.

Think (stative) = have an opinion.
I think that coffee is great.

See (stative) = see with your eyes/understand.
I see what you mean.

Taste (stative) = has a certain taste.
This soup tastes great.

6. Modal verbs = We use modal verbs to show if we believe something is certain, probable or possible or not. Modal verbs are a combination of the preposition (to). e.g., – can, must, should.

Modal|       meaning     |example

●Can  |   to express ability | I can speak a little Spanish.

●Must|   to express obligation |I must go now.

●Should|   to give advice | You should stop smoking.

7. Phrasal verbs = A verb that is made up of a main verb together with an adverb or a preposition or both. They are phrases that indicate action. Typically their meaning is not obvious from the meanings of the individual words themselves. e.g., – She has always looked down on me.

The phrasal verb ‘to look down on someone’ doesn’t mean that you are looking down from a higher place at someone who is below you; it means that you think you are better than someone.

8. Irregular verbs = A verb in which the past tense is not formed by adding the usual – d, ed, or -ied ending or past participle. That means the spelling of irregular verbs can be tricky. Learning irregular verbs means memorization.

Example – rise, rose, risen
mistake, mistook, mistaken
Present tense = rise, mistake
Simple past tense = rose, mistook
Past participle = risen, mistaken

For additional information about today’s workshop, please email us at:

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: