question forms


We make questions by:


1: moving an auxiliary to the front of the clause:

Everybody is watching >> Is everybody watching?
They had worked hard >> Had they worked hard?
He's finished work >> Has he finished work?
Everybody had been working hard >> Had everybody been working hard?
He has been singing >> Has he been singing?
English is spoken all over the world >> Is English spoken all over the world?
The windows have been cleaned >> Have the windows been cleaned?

2: … or by moving a modal to the front of the clause:

They will come >> Will they come?
He might come >> Might he come?
They will have arrived by now >> Will they have arrived by now?
She would have been listening >> Would she have been listening?
The work will be finished soon >> Will the work be finished soon?
They might have been invited to the party >> Might they have been invited to the party?

3: The present simple and the past simple have no auxiliary. We make questions by adding the auxillary do/does for the present simple or did for the past simple:

They live here >> Do they live here?
John lives here >> Does John live here?
Everybody laughed >> Did everybody laugh?




I am checking a teacher's notebook and I saw following question in it. Please let me know if it is correctly worded because I think it is not:

:What preparation Charles did for battle of rivers?
thank you

Hello fatimaashraft38,

You are correct that that sentence is not correct. The correct form would be:

How did Charles prepare for the Battle of...

You would need to complete this with the correct name of the battle, which I do not know - you will need to check this as 'battle of rivers' is certainly not correct.

Best wishes,



The LearnEnglish Team

Hi there!
I found these questions:
'How many people used the subway in 2004?
How many people cycle in NY?'
and I was wondering why you don't use the auxillary did/do to make the questions.
Is it perhaps because 'How many people' is the subject and you use the same rule as with who/what/which as subject in questions? I mean questions like: 'What happened?', where 'what' is the subject.
Thank you very much for a reply

Hello Monica,

Yes, that's correct - when the question word refers to the subject, the auxiliary verb 'do/does/did' is not used. Good work!

Best regards,
The LearnEnglish Team

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I can show you spanish 50/50
best regards

Hi glovicx,

It's great that you want to do a language exchange online to practice your English, but I'm afraid our House Rules prohibit the sharing of personal information such as Skype account names.

Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team

hi, i'm a new student and now i'm studyng the verbs...i have difficult to understand past perfect simple and past peferct continuos :-) my english not good :-)

Hello davide32,

These two forms are some of the trickiest in English, so it's no surprise that you find them challenging. We have a page devoted to this topic, however, so hopefully that will help to clarify it for you.

Best wishes,



The LearnEnglish Team

The windows are cleaned isn't a right one, why do you prefer The windows have been cleaned?