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to read or reading

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to read or reading

Unread postby PENNY56 » Wed Jan 07, 2009 5:36 am

I am trying to help out some people in the law firm I work in by giving them English lessons (which I'm getting from a book or the internet - I've had no training in how to teach). I came across something I struggled to answer and wondered/hoped someone could help?

The following sentences appear with gaps and they have to complete using a suitable verb

a) Keith joined the company 15 years ago. He was quickly promoted and became assistant manager. A few years later he went on to become manager of the company.

b) When I came into the room, Liz was reading a newspaper. She looked up and said hello to me, and then went on reading her newspaper.

The book listed the words I have put in bold. The question from the student was if 'to become' is correct in a) why is 'to read' incorrect in b)?

My English grammar is not good enough to explain why. Is is because she was alrady reading and then continued reading? Can anyone help please?

Kind regards
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Re: to read or reading

Unread postby ICAL_Pete » Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:48 pm

PENNY56 wrote:I am trying to help out some people in the law firm I work in by giving them English lessons (which I'm getting from a book or the internet - I've had no training in how to teach). I came across something I struggled to answer and wondered/hoped someone could help?

The following sentences appear with gaps and they have to complete using a suitable verb

a) Keith joined the company 15 years ago. He was quickly promoted and became assistant manager. A few years later he went on to become manager of the company.

b) When I came into the room, Liz was reading a newspaper. She looked up and said hello to me, and then went on reading her newspaper.

The book listed the words I have put in bold. The question from the student was if 'to become' is correct in a) why is 'to read' incorrect in b)?

My English grammar is not good enough to explain why. Is is because she was alrady reading and then continued reading? Can anyone help please?

Kind regards


The difference is in the meaning of the main verb in each sentence.

In the first sentence there is an implication of future action “he progressed until he became the manager of the company.”

In the second sentence she went on means she continued an action already in progress. “Go on” here is a phrasal verb and takes the gerund (-ing)

You might like to check the Grammar Guide in the ICALwiki for more on this.
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Re: to read or reading

Unread postby xiahuangtiao » Mon Nov 09, 2009 1:22 pm

differences between "go on doing sth." and "go on to do sth." are as following:
go on doing the same thing
go on to do another thing
at the sentence a) he hasn't become manager,so he went on to become...
sentence b)she has been reading,so she went on reading...
:D
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Re: to read or reading

Unread postby harvest » Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:28 am

I agree with ical...

usually after go or went (past form of go) comes gerund
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