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  1. indonesia's Avatar
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    #1

    Gerund help required please.

    Hello all,
    First of all, happy belated xmas greetings and all the best for 2010.
    Now.... blooming 'gerunds!!!!'
    Just as I thought I was getting my head around them, I had a sentence pop up that has set me back to square one!
    I understand all the basics, such as they are doing the job of a noun in the sentence, so they can be the subject, object or complement. No problem so far.
    Then I downloaded a board game (from esl tower) to use in class next week when I start teaching them and came across this sentence.
    "Someone is knocking at the door"
    It tells me that the word 'knocking' is acting as a gerund. Why is it not a present continuous sentence?
    I hope someone can help me figure this out. thx

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    #2

    Re: Gerund help required please.

    Looks like a verb form to me.

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Gerund help required please.

    It's a present participle.

  3. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Gerund help required please.

    Quote Originally Posted by indonesia View Post
    Hello all,
    First of all, happy belated xmas greetings and all the best for 2010.
    Now.... blooming 'gerunds!!!!'
    Just as I thought I was getting my head around them, I had a sentence pop up that has set me back to square one!
    I understand all the basics, such as they are doing the job of a noun in the sentence, so they can be the subject, object or complement. No problem so far.
    Then I downloaded a board game (from esl tower) to use in class next week when I start teaching them and came across this sentence.
    "Someone is knocking at the door"
    It tells me that the word 'knocking' is acting as a gerund. Why is it not a present continuous sentence?
    I hope someone can help me figure this out. thx
    Some people will call any "-ing" form a gerund. It's quite apparent that many students here believe that, and do not distinguish gerunds from present participles. One would therefore assume that it's being taught that way in places, and perhaps that there are grammar books which support this usage.
    It's sad.

  4. indonesia's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Gerund help required please.

    Thank you everybody for your help. So it is a present continuous sentence?
    As I mentioned in my original post, I downloaded this game from quite a well known ESL resource website. How confusing it must be for foreign students if some are being told that these are gerunds and some are being told they aren't, poor kids.


    • Join Date: Dec 2009
    • Posts: 576
    #6

    Re: Gerund help required please.

    I'm not a teacher or anything, but I think it's easier for beginners to be taught "gerund = -ing". Then the students are left to pick up the pieces later when they discover that gerund only refers to nouns.

    Sometimes I feel like going around grammar classes with a sign saying, "Gerunds aren't verbs!".

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