Unit 29 Level 3 (Upper Intermediate - Advanced) I Wish - If Only

Both “I wish” and “If only” (+ past simple) are used to express a wish for something to be different than it actually is in the present. When followed by the “past perfect” tense, they express a regret about the past, a wish that something different had happened.

But sometimes we want to talk about situations we are not happy about, expressing annoyance or impatience. In those cases, we must use “wish + would + bare infinitive”

In this lesson, we are going to practise all these structures in order to use them fluently.

1) Let's start by watching this video about the “I wish” structure. Please, pay attention to the examples, and try to learn them by heart.

2) Check if you have learnt how to use these expressions with the following tutorial.

3) Sometimes there’s some confusion about when to use “wish” and “hope”. This explanation will shed some light on this.

4) Let's practice!

Exercise 1

Exercise 2

Exercise 3

Exercise 4

Exercise 5

Exercise 6

5) Now, translate the following sentences into english:

a) Ojalá dejases de comportarte como un adolescente

b) Ojalá esta casa no fuese tan cara (if only)

c) Ojalá pudiera venir (ella) a la fiesta

d) ¡Si supiera cuántos problemas nos ha causado! (if only)

e) Ojalá hubiésemos podido ir a la boda de nuestros amigos

6) Notice how the “I wish” structure is used in this song by Pink Floyd titled “Wish you were here” (lyrics).

7) Use the sentences from the above exercises and videos to practice with your language exchange.Haven't you found a language exchange yet? You should do it right now! Go to mylanguageexchange or lenguajero. Come on!

8) Let's learn some vocabulary:

Confusing words Quiz

Common Idiomatic Phrases Quiz

Remember: Always use http://www.howjsay.com/ to hear the sound of the new words you're learning.

9) Listen and read this story. You should learn all the vocabulary and practice pronunciation. And, for the most daring, read this article from The Economist.

10) Finally, write a story of about 200/250 words using the structures you have learnt in this unit. Suggestion: Ask your language exchange to write a similar story in Spanish and then correct each other's writings. You can use examples from the videos and exercises above.

If you have done all the exercises, then you've scored a 10! Congratulations!


Key to exercise 5:

a) I wish you would stop behaving like a teenager

b) If only this house weren’t so expensive

c) I wish she might come to the party

d) If only he knew how much trouble he has caused

e) I wish we could have gone to our friends’ wedding Imprimir
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