When learning verbs in English it is common that students have doubts about the auxiliary verb to be used with tenses. Here some useful information:
- Auxiliary Verb – a verb that is used with another verb to show its tense, person, mood etc. In English the auxiliary verbs are: BE, DO and HAVE (and the modals). Examples:
I am going to school (Be =>Present Progressive); We don´t work (Do =>Simple Present); She didn´t play (Did =>Past Simple, negative form); They have gone (Have =>Present Perfect)
OBS.: notice that the verbs BE (ser/estar), DO (fazer) and HAVE (ter) are also irregular verbs with a proper meaning in common sentences like:
We are American (somos americanos), I was tired (Eu estava cansado/a);
I do homework (eu faço lição de casa), She did the exercise (Ela fez o exercício)
They have a car (eles tem um carro), You had a problem (Voce teve um problema)
2. Modal Verbs – one of these verb forms: CAN, COULD, MAY, MIGHT,, WILL, WOULD, SHOULD, MUST etc. They are used with other verbs to express ideas of possibility “It might rain”, permission “Can I park here?” or intention “We would go”.
The modal verbs are used in sentences with another verb in the base form “without to” as in the examples above.