Student or Learner
What is right?
- There is too many things to do.
- There are too many things to do.
Mostly I hear " is " after there.
Please be aware that I'm neither a native English speaker nor a teacher.
...also 'There is too much to do'.
You will most likely hear "there is" in a lot of cases, even when the noun and the verb do not agree. This has more to do with the relative ease of pronouncing the contracted form of "there is" versus "there are".
You can try this yourself. Say "there's" without adding any syllables. Notice how easy it is. It doesn't elongate the word at all.
Now try saying "there're" without adding or elongating any syllables. It's not so easy (especially if your accent is rhotic). As a result, English speakers tend to prefer "there's" when speaking quickly and informally, resulting in many grammatical errors.
To sum up, it is not grammatically correct to say "there's [there is] too many things to do"; however, as long as you can confidently contract "there's" in one, non-elongated syllable, most native English speakers won't even notice the error.
EDIT: not that I'm suggesting you should get in the habit of making grammatical errors!
You may think I have been a bit picky there, but we don't want to confuse learners. It is not acceptable to say 'there is' followed by a plural noun. Many people do not object to the contracted form 'there's' followed by a plural noun.To sum up, it is not grammatically correct to say "there's [
there is] too many things to do"; however, as long as you can confidently contract "there's" in one, non-elongated syllable, most native English speakers won't even notice the error.
I agree. The contracted "there's" is common for any situation but not the uncontracted "there is" before a plural.
I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.