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Lesson 1B

Questions

Information Questions

We can ask information questions by using the question words who, what, where, when, why, and how.

Look at the following sentence. Hold your mouse pointer over a highlighteda highlighted word word to see its type.

Two people are eating dinner at a table. A woman is feeding a bone to a dog under the table.

Yesterday, Wendysubject quietly gaveverb the dogobject a boneobject under the table.

(subject) (verb) (object) (object)

To ask a who or what question about the subject, we do not use do, does, or did.

Who gave the dog a bone?

To ask a who or what question about the objects, we use do, does, or did.

Who did Wendy give a bone to? (informal)

To whom did Wendy give a bone? (formal)

What did Wendy give to the dog?

To ask a where, when, why, or how question, we use do, does, or did.

Where did Wendy give the dog a bone?

When did Wendy give the dog a bone?

How did Wendy give the dog a bone?

Following are more examples of information questions. Click to hear the statements and questions.

Statement

Information Question

The baby woke me up.

(subject) Who woke me up?

(object) Who did the baby wake up?

Sally wore a dress.

(subject) Who wore a dress?

(object) What did Sally wear?

Jethro eats lunch at the office.

(subject) Who eats lunch at the office?

(object) Where does Jethro eat lunch?

The boat arrived at five o’clock.

(subject) What arrived at five o’clock?

When did the boat arrive?

They opened the window because they were hot.

(subject) Who opened the window?

(object) What did they open?
Why did they open the window?

Jane goes to school by bus.

(subject) Who goes to school by bus?

Where does Jane go by bus?
How does Jane go to school?

When a sentence has a helping verb, we change the word order and add a question word to ask an information question. We use do to ask about the main verb. Hold your mouse pointer over a highlighteda highlighted word word to see its type.

Alexandersubject willhelping verb swimmain verb. arrow pointing right Whatquestion word willhelping verb Alexandersubject do?
(subject) (helping verb) (main verb) arrow pointing right (question word) (helping verb) (subject)


Alexandersubject willhelping verb swimmain verb. arrow pointing right Whoquestion word willhelping verb swimmain verb?
(subject) (helping verb) (main verb) arrow pointing right (question word) (helping verb) (main verb)

In sentences with the verb “to be

Alexander is a swimmer.

we ask information questions by simply adding a question word.

Who is a swimmer?

We also ask information questions by adding a question word and changing the word order.

What is Alexander?

Following are more examples of information questions with helping verbs and “to be”. Click to hear the statements and questions.

Statement

Information Question

Bob will study.

Who will study?

What will Bob do?

Alex will be at the party.

Who will be at the party?

Where will Alex be?

The plant was growing.

What was growing?

What was the plant doing?

They have eaten.

Who has eaten?

What have they done?

Doris couldn’t breathe because she was sick.

Who couldn’t breathe?

What couldn’t Doris do?

Why couldn’t Doris breathe?

We should go.

Who should go?

What should we do?

They were late.

Who was late?

What were they?