Should have / shouldn't have

By Terry Fredrickson

Below are some very short videos. Click on the photos to see them. In each case something went wrong. Make a comment about each situation using either should have or shouldn't have to explain how the mistake could have been prevented.

Notice that we are using the past form of the modal "should" because the events have already happened and they can't be changed. I've have suggested some verbs for you to use although you can certainly make your own choices. Use the correct forms of the verbs. You will have to change the forms suggested below.

First look at the photos below and the sentences you will form after you see the videos. Then look at the videos one by one (look below the photos).

Player will show here

1. The biker ...... (raise his arms in celebration)

2. The older boy ...... (look away)

3. The workman ...... (keep looking at the man on the roof)

4. The little boy...... (cause the coffee to spill)

5. The cameraman ...... (turn his camera off)


Possible answers

The biker shouldn't have raised his arms.

The older boy shouldn't have looked away.

The workman should have kept looking at the man on the roof.

The little boy shouldn't have caused the coffee to spill.

The cameraman should have turned his camera off.

Showing off your own video

If you have a short video or an idea that you think would work to illustrate an English verb form, you can connect us through twitter or contact me directly at:

If you have a finished video, you can upload it to a site like Youtube so we can have a look at it. We can then embed it on a page on our site as well. Make a short lesson together with your video so users can understand the main point.

You can also point out videos that you find online that might be useful for understanding verbforms.

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