Wh- Questions Booklet
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Wh- Questions allow a speaker to find out more information about topics. They are as follows:
You use You want to know
How? MannerWhat? Object/Idea/Action
Other words can also be used to inquire about specific information:
You use You want to know
Which (one)? Choice of alternatives
Whom? Person (formal)
How much? Price, amount (uncountable)
How many? Quantity (countable)
How long? Duration
How far? Distance
What kind (of)? Description
The “grammar” used with wh- questions depends on whether the topic being asked about is the “subject” or “predicate” of a sentence. For the subject pattern, simply replace the person or thing being asked about with the appropriate wh-word.
• Someone has my baseball.
Who has my baseball?
•Something is bothering you.
What is bothering you?
For the predicate pattern, wh- question formation depends on whether there is an auxiliary verb in the original sentence. To make a question using the predicate pattern, first form a yes/no question by inverting the subject and (first) auxiliary verb, then add the appropriate wh- word to the beginning of the sentence.
• You will leavesome time.
…will you leave
When will you leave?
• He is doing something.
…is he doing
What is he doing?
• They have been somewhere.
…have they been
Where have they been?
If there is no auxiliary and the verb is to be, invert the subject and verb, then add the appropriate wh- word to the beginning of the sentence.
• He is someone.
Who is he?
• The meetingwas sometime.
…was the meeting
When was the meeting?
If there is no auxiliary and the verb is not to be, add do to the beginning of the sentence, then add the appropriate wh-question word. Be sure to “transfer” the tense and number from the main verb to the word do.
• You want something.
…do you want
What do you want?
• You went somewhere.
…did you go
Where did you go?
•She likes something.
…does she like
What does she like?
1. At what time:
When are we leaving?
When did you first meet Dr Darnall?
When will the work be finished?
I don't know when I'll see her again.
when to do something
I'll tell you when to stop.
2. At or during the time that something happens:
Leonard was nine when his father died.
When the family came herefrom Russia, they were penniless.
When he was in the airforce he flew Tornado jets.
3. After or as soon as something happens:
When the meal was finished, Rachel washed up and made coffee.
I'll phone you again when I get home.
4. Used to mention a type of event or situation when talking about what happens on occasions of that type:
When lead is added to petrol, it improves the car'sperformance.
When mixed with water the powder forms a smooth paste.
He always wears glasses except when playing football.
5. Used to show which particular time or occasion you are talking about:
The best moment was when he scored the winning goal.
There are times when I hate him.
the day/time/afternoon etc when
She remembered the day when Paula had first arrived.
6. Before or sincewhich time:
The baby is due in May, by when the new house should be finished.
That was written in 1946, since when the education system has undergone great changes.
7. (Spoken) Used to show that you are very surprised or angry:
Since when have you been interested in my feelings?
8. Even though something is true:
Why does she steal things when she could easily afford to buy...
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