DEFINICIÓN: Los verbos modales son verbos diferentes al resto de los verbos. Tienen una serie de características especiales. Estos verbos pueden expresar: obligación, necesidad, prohibición, ausencia de necesidad, probabilidad, posibilidad, habilidad… • CARACTERÍSTICAS: o Son verbos incompletos. No tienen participio ni infinitivo, y necesitan otros verbos para completar su conjugación: CAN se completa con la perífrasis BE ABLE TO, MUST con HAVE TO, etc. o No llevan -S en la 3ª persona singular del presente simple, excepto HAVE TO (HAS TO) o Todos van seguidos de otro verbo en infinitivo sin TO, excepto OUGHT TO, HAVE TO y NEED TO. o Como no necesitan verbo auxiliar, construyen la interrogativa invirtiendo el orden del sujeto y el verbo, y la negativa añadiendo NOT. ¡¡OJO!! CANNOT


- Expresar habilidad - Expresar posibilidad o imposibilidad - Expresar o pedir permiso






- We can drive very well - Be able to - I can't talk, complementa a I've got a very can cuando sore throat indica habilidad posibilidad: - Can I sit y infinitivo, futuro, down? - She can't be present perfect - En negativa at school. It's y gerundio, e.g. I will be able to holiday. expresar play the guitar deducción y prohibición. - You cannot in a year. smoke here. - Expresar - Jane could habilidad en drive before pasado. she was 18. - Pedir algo - Could you educadamente. pass the salt, please?

- Expresar posibilidad o imposibilidad en el pasado. - Hacer especulaciones (posibilidad remota) - Hacer sugerencias. - Remplaza a can en el estilo indirecto - Expresar una crítica.

- It was so hot I couldn't walk in the sand. - This passport could be his. - We could play bingo today. - They said they could do it themselves. - You could have bought some more food. - May I leave the classroom? - You may go to the toilet. - The headmaster may visit the class today. - That may be the thief that was arrested by the police. - They might invite us to the party. - They might have broken the window… - You should do more physical exercise

- Pedir algo. - Expresar permiso. - Expresar posibilidad (presente o futura) - Hacer especulaciones. - Expresar posibilidad (más dudosa) - Hacer especulaciones SHOULD - Dar y pedir consejos (debería)


- Cuando MAY indica posibilidad indica que algo no es seguro. (quizá, tal vez, puede que)


- La posibilidad es muy dudosa (pudiera ser que)

- Expresar obligación moral - You should o que algo no be more es lo adecuado tolerant que esperabamos - Criticar - She should

have been quiet - I'll carry the - Hacer un suitcase for ofrecimiento you. WILL - Will you - Pedir algo bring me a educadamente coffee, please? - Hacer un - Shall I open ofrecimiento the window? - What shall - Pedir we do SHALL sugerencias tonight? - I shall speak - Tomar to the decisiones headmaster - Would you - Hacer un like some ofrecimiento tea? WOULD - When I was - Rutinas en el a child, I pasado (afirm.) would go (solía) fishing. - Expresar - You must go obligación - HAVE TO to school (autoridad fuerte) complementa a - En negativa: - You mustn't MUST en los MUST expresar smoke in tiempos que prohibición hospitals este carece, (presente) - They must e.g. She had to - Expresar get up early be happy. deducción yesterday. They've won (afirmativa) the lottery - Expresar - Need we go necesidad now? - Con sentido - The trees pasivo need pruning. NEED - En negativa: - You needn't ausencia de get up early at obligación = weekends don't have to OUGHT TO - You ought to do more - Dar consejos physical exercise - Expresar - You ought to

acciones pasadas

obligación moral - Expresar hábitos o rutinas en el pasado - Expresar obligación (+ suave) - En negativa: ausencia de obligación - Dar consejos o sugerencia (sería mejor) - + infinitivo: preferir algo 2 sujetos iguales WOULD RATHER





be more tolerant - I used to play tennis, but now I play basket - You have to be 18 to drive a car - You don't have to wear a uniform in this school - It's getting dark, we'd better go home now - I'd rather stay at home (prefiero)

- + Oración en - I'd rather pasado simple: she studied (preferiría) harder sujetos diferentes - I'd rather - + infinitivo + listen to music than + infinitivo than dance - Expresa "estar acostumbrado a.." - Expresa " acostumbrarse a.."


- I'm used to going to bed late. - I can't get used to his way of cooking.

MODALES PERFECTOS: Se refieren al pasado: expresan conclusiones, suposiciones y conjeturas que hacemos sobre hechos pasados y se forman con un modal + have + participio. o MUST + HAVE + PARTICIPIO → conclusiones lógicas en el pasado, e.g. Sheila was absent yesterday. She must have been ill. o COULD + HAVE + PARTICIPIO

→ indica que hubo posibilidad de hacer algo en el pasado pero realmente no se hizo, e.g. He could have helped us, but he came too late. → en negativa, expresa la incredulidad de que lo ocurrido sea cierto, e.g. She couldn't have said those words. → para hacer una suposición en el pasado, e.g. She didn't come to the party. She could have been ill. MAY / MIGHT + HAVE + PARTICIPIO → expresan una suposición sobre el pasado, e.g. Call her again. She may / might not have heard you the first time. o SHOULD / OUGHT TO + HHAVE + PARTICIPIO

→ para lamentar que no se siguió un consejo en el pasado, e.g. She looks worse. She should / ought to have seen a doctor last week. → para lamentar que no se haya cumplido lo que esperábamos, e.g. They should have been home by now. → en negativa demuestran nuestra opinión crítica sobre algo que no debería haber ocurrido, e.g. I'm very angry with her. She shouldn't have been so rude.

Expressing Ability
Make a choice by clicking on a button then compare your answer with the correct one hidden under the answer button. 1. Although it contains many difficult words, I ___ read this book now. can could may

2. But I ___ have read it last year. mayn't

couldn't can't

3. Because there were many long words which I ___ understand. couldn't can't aren't able to

4. When you receive the new books ___ try to read one of them? can I could I may

5. I ___ understand why you won't let me. couldn't can't mayn't

6. Can you find your way to the hotel? Yes I ___. could am able can


Can you pronounce my name properly? I ___ if you would speak more slowly. could may can

8. Are you strong enough to lift that box.? Yes, I ___. could am can

9. Will you speak more clearly please? I ___ hardly hear you at all. could can can't

10. I ___ only listen to my radio when my mother was not at home. did can could

11. Can you fix my car today? Yes, I ___. may could


12. I ___ do that because I will get a sunburn. can't couldn't can

13. Is it low enough ___ you to be able to step over it? to for of

14. I ___ reach that apple, I'll have to use a ladder. don't can't couldn't

15. ___ you just jump? Can't Don't If

16. I ___ have known when she was coming home because I didn't have a watch.

can't couldn't won't

Click the answer button to see the answer. 1. ___ you speak any foreign languages? a. May b. Can c. Have

2. Liz ___ get tired of her job. It is so boring. a. has to b. must c. should

3. Where's Nick? He ___ be in his office. a. might b. mustn't c. is to

4. Take an umbrella. It ___ rain later. a. has to b. need c. might

5. Jack ___ go to hospital yesterday. a. must b. had to c. need

6. You look tired. You ___ go to bed. a. should b. ought c. are to

7. You ___ do it. I've already done it. a. must not b. need not c. ought not

8. ___ it be true? a. Must b. May

c. Can

9. ___ we stay or leave? a. Will b. Would c. Shall

10.Jane was so tired. She ___ have worked days and nights. a. should b. must c. need

Complete the sentences below using must or a form of have to. Example: You _____ light a naked flame near the gas pumps. a) don't have to ---------b) must not - The answer is: b) must not

1. Victoria _____ wake up at 4:00 in the morning yesterday. a) had to b) must

2. I strongly believe that they should _____ ask permission. a) have to b) must

3. Can _____ reliably predict an earthquake? a) anyone b) anywhere

4. When I was young, I _____ do many things for myself. a) didn't have to b) must not

5. While operating a motor vehicle, you _____ drink and drive. a) don't have to b) must not

6. Why _____ a new year come for us to make changes in our lives? a) has to b) must

7. You _____ wear a tie, but you can wear one if you want to. a) don't have to b) must not

8. The weather became so severe that all of the workers _____ be sent home. a) had to b) must

9. Bill _____ see everything at once because he can always visit again. a) doesn't have to b) must not

10. _____ all of the current assumptions about the universe one day be revised? a) Have to ---------b) Must

Complete the sayings and proverbs below using the clauses in the box. Example: should apologize Jill to Mark for being late. Answer:

to Mark for being late.

1. Ought Mary to clean up the mess she made.

clean up the mess she made.

2. opposite the Shouldn't of zero be everything?

of zero be everything?

3. look should Everyone at the stars from time to time.

at the stars from time to time.

4. should We have a plan when the going gets difficult.

when the going gets difficult.

5. turn we whom To should for inspiration and wisdom?

for inspiration and wisdom?

6. study if ought Dan to more he wants to pass the exam.

he wants to pass the exam.

7. to ought You worry not about things you can't change.

things you can't change.

8. schools that Some think should things offer parenting classes.

offer parenting classes.

9. ought Vegetables to canned be while they're still fresh.

while they're still fresh.

10. do you Don't say something to ought unless you can actually do it.

unless you can actually do it.

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