How to use adverbs of time

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How to use adverbs of time
How to use adverbs of time

Adverbs are a very important part of English grammar because they are used very often when speaking and writing as well. Adverbs are used to modify a verb, an adjective or another adverb. Although there are different types with different functions, in this case you will learn everything about adverbs of time.


Part 1 of 2: Learn to Place Adverbs in a Sentence

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Organize a Bible Study at Home Step 3

Step 1. Use adverbs to modify verbs:

This is a very common use for adverbs. They can be placed in different parts of the sentence and not always next to the verb, but always giving it a different meaning or meaning depending on the position you use.

  • The adverb at the beginning of the sentence is used to highlight the verb more. The easiest guide to follow is: Adverb + Subject + Verb + Complement. Example: Yesterday she danced in her school (Yesterday she danced in her school)
  • The adverb between the verb and the complement: In the case of time adverbs it is not so usual, but it works to emphasize the facts described in the sentence. Use the following form: Subject + Adverb + Verb + Complement. Example: Mario takes a shower before he goes to the school. (Mario takes a shower before going to school)
  • Use of the adverb at the end of the sentence, this case is the most appropriate when using adverbs of time. Use this guide: Subject + Verb + Complement + Adverb. Example: I traveled to London yesterday. (I traveled to London yesterday)
Teach Study Skills Step 12
Teach Study Skills Step 12

Step 2. Use adverbs to modify adjectives:

In this case you should not confuse the adverb with the adjective, this is an error that can happen to anyone, but nothing happens if you remember that only adverbs can completely change the meaning of the adjective and instead, adjectives cannot change the adverb.

Place the adverb before the adjective that you are going to modify, follow this structure: Subject + Verb + Adjective + Adverb. Example: The sky is darker now. (The sky is darker now)

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Apply for a Disney College Program Step 3

Step 3. Use different types of adverbs in the same sentence:

For one adverb to modify another, it is necessary to follow a correct order depending on what we want to express and the part of the sentence that should be highlighted the most. In this case you must be careful when putting several in the same sentence.

  • Place the adverb of time after the main adverb, follow this form: Subject + Verb + Adverb of place, mode or frequency + Adverb of time. Example: We come late every morning if it’s before nine o’clock. (We are late every morning if it is before nine in the morning)
  • If your intention is to put more than one adverb of time in the same sentence, then they must have the following order: How long, How often and finally When. Example: She is taking a vacation for two weeks, every year.
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Apply for a Disney College Program Step 7

Step 4. Make compound sentences with adverbs of time:

Compound sentences are characterized by presenting a main sentence or "main clause" and an adverbial sentence or in this case "time clause". When working with adverbs of time, these types of sentences can be formed and even the position of the adverb within it can be exchanged.

  • Make your compound sentence: You can place the “main clause” at the beginning as: Subject + Verb + Complement and add the “time clause” with: Adverb of time + Subject + Verb + Complement.
  • She eats dinner before she goes to bed. (She eats dinner before going to bed)
  • You can also place the “time clause” first with the following guide: Adverb of time + Subject + Verb + Complement and in the “main clause” Subject + Verb * complement.
  • Before she goes to sleep, she eats dinner. (Before going to bed, she eats dinner)

Part 2 of 2: Use all types of adverbs of time

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Apply for a Disney College Program Step 10

Step 1. Identify the adverbs that only express “when” generally:

they are used to indicate the moment when an action occurred. Almost all the time these adverbs are used at the end of the sentence, although depending on the most important thing in the sentence they can change places. It is important that you try to memorize which ones are used to express only when or “when” so that later it will be easier for you to differentiate them from other types.

  • You can use them in different verb tenses, with conditional sentences, when you want to make comparative sentences, etc.
  • These adverbs are: Yesterday (yesterday), Tomorrow (tomorrow), Today (today), Later (after), Now (now), Tonight (tonight), etc.
  • She is going to arrive tomorrow. (She will arrive tomorrow)
  • I will study math later. (I will study math later)
  • Will you go to the movies tonight? (Are you going to the movies tonight?)
Hunt for a Job After College Step 2
Hunt for a Job After College Step 2

Step 2. Use the adverbs that express “when” subjectively:

They do not indicate such an exact moment, but they serve to clarify some details about what is meant in the sentence. Some of these adverbs are: Early (early), Late (late), Soon (soon), Then (then), etc.

  • He is coming home late today. (He's coming home late tonight)
  • We are going to travel to Madrid so soon. (We are going to travel to Madrid very soon)
  • I usually wake up early during the Winter. (I usually get up early during winter)
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Teach Study Skills Step 13

Step 3. Use the adverbs of time that indicate duration:

It is recommended that these also go at the end of sentences. With this type of adverbs we use For (by or for) and Since (from) and it is recommended that you learn some of their combinations to use them more effectively. The adverbs used will also be of great help in expressing exact times and dates.

  • Some adverbs that indicate duration are: All day / night (all day or all night), For hours (for hours), For minutes (for minutes), Since an specific year (from a specific year), etc.
  • I’ve waited for you since 1965. (I have waited for you since 1965)
  • She was at the door for hours. (she was at the door for hours)
  • I was celebrating my birthday all day. (I celebrated my birthday for hours)
Teach Study Skills Step 5
Teach Study Skills Step 5

Step 4. Vary your vocabulary using more formal adverbs:

If you want your sentences to be more descriptive in writing or sound more property, you can use some adverbs that are not recommended for daily use, but elegant on occasions that need a more formal vocabulary.

  • Some of these adverbs are: Nowadays (today), Currently (currently), Afterwards (later), These days (these days), At present (in the present), Thereafter (after that), Formerly (formerly), etc.
  • Currently we see more children watching television. (We currently observe more children watching television)
  • The houses are more expensive nowadays. (Houses are more expensive nowadays)
  • She is going to graduate afterwards. (She's going to graduate later)


  • When using the verb ser or estar, it is preferable to always use adverbs at the end.
  • When formulating compound sentences, you must put a comma if you put the "time clause" first.
  • In compound sentences, the verbs must be in the same tense or using a verb with results in the past tense.

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