Question words


Questions about the subject


When we ask questions about the subject of a sentence, the word order in the question and the answer is the same:

Ben designed this house.

Who designed this house?

X Who did build this house?

Who built this house?

  • We use what, who, which, whose and how many in questions about the subject.

Questions about the object

Questions about the object need an auxiliary verb (do, have, is, etc.) before the subject:

John designed this cathedral.

What did John design?

  • We use what, which, who, whose, when, where, how often, etc. in questions about the object.
    X Which cathedral John built?
    Which cathedral did John build?


Here is a summary of question words with examples:

Question word Example: subject question Example: object question
Who Who is teaching you? Who do you know here? (Whom is very formal.)

What caused the problem?


What film did you see?
What kind of What kind of people live here? What kind of TV programmes do you watch?

Which book sold most?


Which picture do you like?

Whose book won the prize?


Whose book did you borrow?
How many  

How many pupils came to the lesson?

How many people did you see?
Why Why did you get up so late?
When When did you go to England?
How How do I get to your house?
How far How far is the college from here?

How long


How often

How long does it take to get there?

How often do you go swimming?

Present Simple

Statement + Statement – Questions Answer + Answer –
I work I don’t work Do I work well ? Yes, I do No, I don’t
You work You don’t work Do you work ? Yes, you do No, you don’t
He works He doesn’t work Does he work ? Yes, he does No, he doesn’t
She works She doesn’t work Does she work ? Yes, she does No, she doesn’t
It works It doesn’t work Does it work ? Yes it does No, it doesn’t
We work We don’t work Do we work ? Yes, we do No, we don’t
You work You don’t work Do you work ? Yes, you do No, you don’t
They work They don’t work Do they work ? Yes, they do No, they don’t

Do the test:

1. Jane (buy) beautiful clothes.
2. My parents  (not/speak) English, sorry !
3. Her sister (phone) every day.
4. I am very good at German; I (understand) it quite well.
5. I am not good at Spanish ; I (not/understand) it at all.
6. (understand/she) Italian ?
7. They have a car, they (not/take) the bus.
8. He has a funny dog. His name is Sugar ; he (play) with him all the time.
9. He’s very big ! He (eat) a lot !
10. (know/ you) Mr Smith ?
11. It’s 10.30 ! They always (get up) late.
12. What time (go/your children) to school ?
13. Harry  (watch) television from 7.00 to 9.00 every evening.
14. She is hard-working, she always (try) to do her best.
15. Jane (study) psychology at university.


Listen and count the verbs in Simple Present and Frequency adverbs in these wonderful songs: Present Simple Songs

Present Simple vs. Present Continuous


Compare their form:


Compare their use:


Time expressions:


Do the test:

1. Listen! Sandra (play) music!
2. On Sundays, I always (play) football with my friends.
3. I  (not/like) carrots.
4. She (hate) westerns.
5. Can you help Peter? He  (do) his homework.
6. What  (you/watch) on TV? Is it interesting?
7. When I (go) back home, I will phone my girlfriend.
8. We usually (take) a taxi to go to work.
9. They (not/travel) a lot.
10. She  (not/come). She is looking after her little sister.