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  1. #1
    Waawe is offline Member
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    Default Good at + noun/gerund

    #1 Is it safe to say someone is good at something?

    E.g.: He is good at cars. She is good at French, etc.

    Or do I have to use a gerund?

    Eg: He is good at repairing cars, She is good at speaking French, respectively.

    #2 What is the opposite? To be bad at or in something?

  2. #2
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Good at + noun/gerund

    Hello Waawe,

    Generally speaking, you are "good / bad at" an activity. Thus:

    1. ??He is good at cars

    intelligible, but strange: cars are not an activity. But "stealing cars" is; thus:

    2. He is good at stealing cars.

    "French" on the other hand can be understood as "French lessons" or "the study of French" (you "do French" at school); thus:

    3. He is good at French

    Or you can add a gerund:

    4. He isn't very good at speaking French

    Best wishes,

    MrP

    Not a professional ESL teacher.

  3. #3
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    Cool Re: Good at + noun/gerund

    Quote Originally Posted by Waawe View Post
    #1 Is it safe to say someone is good at something?

    E.g.: He is good at cars. She is good at French, etc.

    Or do I have to use a gerund?

    Eg: He is good at repairing cars, She is good at speaking French, respectively.

    #2 What is the opposite? To be bad at or in something?
    Trust your instinct. Using a gerund is clear. However you can get away without the gerund sentence #2, because French is a subject of study in some schools. Then it would be implied that she does well in French class.

    The opposite of /good at/ is /bad at/. You are good at inferring grammar rules. Trust your instincts.

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