Some verbs have the pattern N + V + to+infinitive:

They agreed to help.
We decided to go.

Some verbs have the pattern N + V + N + to+infinitive:

She told him to go home.
They advised us to wait.

Note: we suggest that you read about Verbs with -ing forms before doing this activity.



Hello everyone,
I have questions about question 8: We always enjoy having friends to stay.
Does this sentence have the same meaning as "We always enjoy having friends stay."?
If so, would it be more grammatically correct to omit 'to' in this case?
If not, what's the difference between these two sentences?
Thank you.

Hello Delta,

Yes, they mean the same thing. The sentence without 'to' is more common in American English, whereas I'd say the second is more natural in British English. It is a reduced form of the sentence 'We always enjoy having friends come to stay'.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you Kirk. Now I understand it.

Hello... I'm Arrumi
I have some question: what is verb patterns?
Is it Important to learn?
how can we memorize the patterns?

Hello Jasmine Arrumi,

Verb patterns describe how verbs are used in relation to their objects. Some verbs have objects (transitive verbs), some do not (intransitive verbs) and some can be with an object or without (ergative verbs). Some verbs have indirect objects as well as direct objects.

It's very important to learn the pattern for each verb if you want to use it correctly in a sentence, because the verb pattern exists independent of the particular tense or aspect which is used. Our section on verb patterns starts here - use the links on the right to look at specific patterns.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

I have a question about this and previous articles. What the difference between the Verbs with -ing forms and Verbs with to-infinitive?

Hello Alexandr Topalov,

This is a question of form rather than meaning. There is no intrinsic meaning to either form; it is simply a question of remembering which verbs are followed by to + infinitive and which by -ing.

Some verbs can be followed by either form, and then there is a difference in meaning. The links I provided in my answer to your earlier question clarify this with examples.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

I have some question: as I know, two words with "-ing" ending can not to follow each other (They are considering employing her for another year.) Does this rule not applicable when Continious Tense is used?

Hello Katty K,

There is no rule like that which I am aware of. The example you give is perfectly correct and it is not unusual to follow a continuous form with a gerund, for example.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you Peter. It's so hard English for me, unfortunately.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all The LearnEnglish Team!