Following instructions and understanding rules


Following instructions is important because it helps to save time and it aids in the safety of something or someone.

Following directions also helps you to learn things and in efficiency.The importance of instructions is so you will know what to do and to do it right.

Look at the following expressions:

  • Watch out!
  • Come here!
  • Sit!
  • Look out!
  • Be quiet!
  • Stop!

All of them are very common in many situations. They can be used in public places, school, work and at home.

There are others such as “right”, left”, “straight” that are used when you are giving instructions to get to a place.

To give orders, warnings and instructions in english, we use the imperative form:

  • Order: Be quiet
  • Warning: Take care
  • Instructions: Listen to me carefully

Imperative sentences can end with a period (.) or an exclamation point (!).

Adults do not usually give each other orders, unless they are in a position of authority. However, adults can give orders to children and to animals.

Here are some orders you could give to your pet:

Come here!

You can also use the Imperative to warn someone of danger. For example:
Watch out!, Don’t cross!, Look out!

You can also give an advice using the Imperative. Look at this example:
Eat an apple. It is much better for you than a biscuit!

Understand regulations

A rule is a statement that tells you what is or is not allowed in a particular game, situation, etc.

It is also an accepted procedure, custom or habit. When you understand regulations, you may not have problems of any kind.

Modal verbs

The modal verbs include can, must, may, should, might, shall, would. They are used with other verbs to express ability, obligation, possibility, suggestions and so on.

Modal verbs are unlike other verbs. They do not change their form (spelling) and they have no infinitive or participle (past/present). The modals must and can need substitute verbs to express obligation or ability in the different tenses.

Modals are auxiliary verbs. They do not need an additional auxiliary in negatives or questions. For example:

Must I come? (Do I must come?) or He shouldn’t smoke (He doesn’t should smoke).

Maybe you are wondering what the difference between them is.

Let´s find out: all the auxiliary verbs except be, do and have are called modals. Unlike other auxiliary verbs, modals only exist in their helping form. They cannot act alone as the main verb in a sentence. Study Grammar Box 1.

Fuente: Secretaría de Educación Pública. (2015). Lengua adicional al español II. Ciudad de México.