We will learn what a 'verb phrase' is.
What is a 'verb'?
A verb is a word to describe the 'action' or 'state'.
Action: I ate chocolates.
State: I live in London.
What is a 'verb phrase'?
It is the verb and the noun phrase together. For example:
I ate chocolates. = this is not a verb phrase because it has a subject.
watch a film = this is a verb phrase because it has the verb (watch) and and the noun phrase (a film) together.
watch a film = a verb phrase includes a noun phrase.
verb phrase = verb + noun phrase
What is a 'gerund phrase'?
It is the gerund and the noun phrase together. For example:
I like eating. = this is not a gerund phrase because it has a subject.
eating French food = this is a gerund phrase because it has the gerund (eating) and the noun phrase (French food) together.
eating French food = a gerund includes a noun phrase.
gerund phrase = gerund + noun phrase
Why is it important?
When grammar becomes more complicated it is easier to add chunks like 'verb phrase' or 'gerund phrase' rather than say 'verb + noun phrase' all the time.
It is easier to build on existing knowledge.
What is not in a verb phrase?
A verb phrase contains everything needed for the sentence to make sense in context. For example:
This sentence can make sense in context.
I went to the bank.
This sentence, with 'to the bank' added, is usual with the verb 'went'.
I went to the bank yesterday.
'Yesterday' is not part of the verb phrase because we do not need it for the sentence to make sense.
Let's look at another one:
This sentence makes sense in context.
I ate a delicious pizza.
We have added 'what' the person ate. It is very normal to say what someone ate.
I ate a delicious pizza at that new restaurant.
Examples and review
Subject + like to + verb phrase
Subject + like + gerund phrase
My friend likes to go to the supermarket.
My friend likes to go to the supermarket on Sunday.
My friend likes going to the supermarket.
My friend likes going to the supermarket every Sunday.
Subject + want to + verb phrase
The dog wants to go for a walk in the park.
That man wants to read his newspaper.
We want to wear the same colour tie for your wedding.
I want to have a glass of wine for dinner.
Subject + verb phrase + because + noun + verb phrase
Because + noun + verb phrase + subject + verb phrase
I started going to University because I want to get a good job.
Because I want to get a good job, I started going to University.
My sister doesn't like vegetables because our mum made her eat lots.
Because our mum made my sister eat lots of vegetables, she doesn't like them.
The film is very good because it has great actors.
Because the film has great actors, it is very good.
Subject + have / has + past participle verb phrase
I have eaten very strange things.
I have eaten very strange things on holiday.
My sister has lived in Japan, Korea and China.
My sister has lived in Japan, Korea and China for three years.
We have had our dog for two months.
We have been on holiday to Italy every year since 2009.
Subject + verb 'be' + going to + verb phrase
I am going to see a new film.
I am going to see a new film at the cinema.
I am going to see a new film at the cinema tomorrow.
My boss is going to have a meeting with me for three hours.
My boss is going to have a meeting with me next week.
Subject + should + verb phrase
He should study English.
He should study English every day.
He should study English every day for thirty minutes.
They should eat more vegetables to make them healthier.
My daughter should exercise more.
May / Might / Could
Subject + may / might / could + verb phrase
We might go.
We might go next week.
She could drive to their house in the countryside.
My grandad may come on holiday with us.
Subject + can + verb phrase
I can cook lots of different things.
We can go to the theme park.
We can go to the theme park next Tuesday.
You can't do that.
If (zero and first conditionals)
If + subject + present tense verb phrase, noun + present tense verb phrase.
If + subject + present tense verb phrase, noun + future tense verb phrase.
If I buy the ingredients, you cook the food.
If the weather becomes bad, we will need an umbrella.
If it is Saturday tomorrow, we don't have to get-up at 6am.
If she doesn't study every day, she might not get the job she wants.
'Verb phrases' and 'gerund phrases' are grammar chunks which have a 'verb' or 'gerund' and a 'noun phrase'.