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English Speaking Practice: Using Would

Use the chart below to practice other common uses of would. Answer the questions--the example sentences will help you form your answers with correct grammar. Reviewing using would as a conditional word.

Example 1
Example 2

use would to refer to past repeated events when exact times are not stated*

1. When you were a child, what is something you would often do?
When I was a child, I would play with rocks.
When I was little, I would tease my sister.
2. When you were a teenager, what is something you would often do?
I would go to parties.
I would study all the time.

use would to relate an imaginary situation

3. What is something you would have said if the situation was right?
I would have told her to face the truth if she had not ignored me.
I would have told him to get another job if he had been ready to hear that.
4. What is something you would have done if the situation was right?
I would have paid the money if my tax refund had arrived.
I would have written the book if only I had enough patience.

use would to describe a past characteristic

5. Think of someone from your distant past (you might still know the person now). What is something this person would do?
My mother would always wash the dishes.
My father would often mow the lawn.
6. Think of someone from your recent past. What is something that person would do?
My coworker would talk for twenty minutes at meetings. She has left the company, and I'm glad!
My friend would write me an email everyday. Now she's sick, and I worry about her.

Remember that Americans will usually use contractions when speaking with "would," as in "I'd," "he'd," "she'd," "we'd" and "they'd."

* Note: "Would" cannot be used this way when time is specified, i.e. "I went to one party in 1991."

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