Modals of Obligation
Hi everyone! I’m Angie from speakingenglish.co.il!
Today is all about modals of obligation: must, have to, should
Let’s start with have to and must. We use have to and must to talk about obligation or something that needs to be done. They can also be used to give advice or recommendations.
Have to is a normal verb so it can be used in all tenses and forms. And must be changed to has to when using the third person: he/she/it
For example, he has to wash the dishes. I have to wash the dishes.
Must is a modal verb, and can only be used in the present tense. It does not change.
For example, He must fix the car. I must fix the car.
In both examples, it is an obligation. He has to, he must.
You have to go to the new Italian restaurant. You must watch the new star wars movie. Now in these two examples, it is an advice or strong recommendation to do something. You are not being obligated to go to the new Italian restaurant or to watch the new star wars. I just think you would like the restaurant because it is delicious. And I think you would like the new movie because it has a great storyline.
Please note that have got to is also used instead of have to or must, but mainly in spoken english.
For example, She has got to go to the shopping center to buy her mom a gift.
We can also say she has to go or she must go to the shopping center to buy her mom a gift.
Tip: have to is more commonly used in spoken English, while must is more frequently used in formal writing.
Let’s talk about the negative form of have to and must.
The negative of have/has to is don’t/doesn’t have to. It means that there is no obligation to do something.
For example, We don’t have to wait to be seated because we have reservations.
The negative of must is mustn’t but it means that something is not permitted. For example, you mustn’t go to the park after sunset; it is against the law. It is prohibited to go to the park after sunset. Instead of mustn’t you can also use can’t or not allowed to.
Ok so that’s have to and must, now let’s talk about should.
Should, like must, is a modal verb. So the form doesn’t change, unless using it in the negative which is shouldn’t.
Should is used to give advice or opinion.
He should go to the doctor; he’s been coughing all day.
You shouldn’t go to work if you are sick.
The form for all three modals of obligation is the same.
Have to / must / should + verb in infinitive
So now, you should go to our Facebook page and give us three examples using the three modals of obligation!
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