Modals - 'could' and 'couldn't'

Do you want to practise using the modals could and couldn't in English?


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Modals – 'could' and 'couldn't'

We can use could and couldn't to talk about abilities in the past.

I could swim when I was four.
She couldn't ride a bike when she was three.
He could walk when he was two.

How to use them

Use the infinitive without to after could and couldn't.

I couldn't run when I was a baby.
My mum couldn't swim when she was a child.
We could read when we were five.
They couldn't speak English before they went to school.

For questions, change the order of could and the person.

Could you play chess last year? Yes, I could.
Could your dad drive a car when he was young? No, he couldn't.
What could you do when you were four?

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