Gerund Rules

The object of a verb is usually a noun or pronoun.

  • I finished something.
  • I finished my homework.
  • I finished dinner.

The object of the verb can be a gerund. A gerund is the -ing form of a verb. It looks like a verb but acts like a noun.

  • I finished studying. (‘Studying‘ is the object of the verb ‘finish.’)
  • I finished eating. (‘Eating‘ is the object of the verb ‘finish.)

Gerund Practice:

Verbs followed by gerunds

  • enjoy
    My mother enjoys working at a law firm.
  • finish
    I finished eating a liter of ice cream.
  • stop
    Steve stopped smoking.
  • quit
    I quit watching TV last week.
  • mind
    I mind studying ten hours a day seven days a week.
  • postpone
    Keiko postponed taking the IELTS exam until next week.
  • put off
    Marco put off getting married until next year.
  • keep
    You should keep preparing for the exam.
  • keep on
    I’ll keep on trying to lose weight.
  • consider
    We considered taking the bus to the restaurant.
  • think about
    You should think about learning how to cook.
  • discuss
    My father discussed golfing with his friends.
  • talk about
    I talked about moving out with my parents.

Infinitive Rules

The object of the verb can also be an infinitive. An infinitive is to + the simple form of a verb.

  • I want dinner.
  • I want to eat. or I want to eat dinner.

Infinitive Practice:

Verbs followed by infinitives

  • want
    We want to attend a lecture on Friday.
  • need
    Angela needs to finish her essay.
  • like
    Nico likes to watch horror movies.
  • love
    Our class loves to speak English.
  • hope
    We hope to win a gold medal.
  • expect
    My father expects to get a promotion.
  • plan
    Mi Kyung plans to study in Paris next year.
  • intend
    Do you intend to go kayaking on the weekend.
  • mean
    I didn’t mean to hurt you.
  • decide
    I decided to join the swim team.
  • promise
    Misha promised to meet me tomorrow.
  • offer
    My mother offered to cook Christmas dinner.
  • agree
    I agree to rent this apartment for one year.
  • refuse
    I can’t refuse to marry you.
  • appear
    My brother appeared to want a new car, but he didn’t buy one in the end.
  • pretend
    On Halloween, I will pretend to be a ghost.
  • forget
    Sun Young forgot to lock her car, and thieves stole her purse.
  • learn
    Last year, I learned to change a flat tire on my car.
  • try
    I will try to help you this weekend.

Some verbs are followed by gerunds or infinitives and the meaning is the same.

Gerunds or Infinitives Practice:

Verbs that can be followed by gerunds or infinitives.

  • begin
    • It began snowing.
    • It began to snow.
  • start
    • Tomorrow, we will start studying Unit 8.
    • Tomorrow, we will start to study Unit 8.
  • continue
    • My sister will continue teaching.
    • My sister will continue to teach.
  • like
    • We like cycling.
    • We like to cycle.
  • love
    • Cindy loves playing baseball.
    • Cindy loves to play baseball.
  • hate
    • I hate driving in the city.
    • I hate to drive in the city.
  • can’t stand
    • The teacher can’t stand punishing students for texting.
    • The teacher can’t stand to punish students for texting.