Adverbs of frequency
Adverbs of frequency are adverbs that answer the question ‘how often?’. Examples include never, always and sometimes.
How often do you go to the theatre? I never go to the theatre.
Does it always rain in Ireland? No, it sometimes rains in Ireland.
What are adverbs of frequency?
When do we use them, and where do we put them in a sentence?
In today’s post, we are going to look at the adverbs of frequency: Always, usually, often, sometimes, rarely and never.
Adverbs of frequency
We use adverbs of frequency to talk about how often we do something.
Do we do it every day for example?
If we have cereal for breakfast every day, we can say:
I always have cereal for breakfast.
If, on the other hand, I only have cereal on most days, I can say:
I usually have cereal for breakfast.
If it isn’t even most days but it happens regularly, I can say:
I often have cereal for breakfast.
To express less frequent ideas we can use:
sometimes – on some occasions
rarely – on few occasions
never – not at all
To use adverbs of frequency in a sentence, we use a subject + adverb + main verb:
I always go to the beach in summer.
To use an adverb of frequency, we put subject + adverb + infinitive
With auxiliary verbs
We can also use adverbs of frequency with auxiliary verbs.
However, when we do this, we put the adverb after the auxiliary verb.
I am often happy at the weekend.
She can usually do her homework.
They have rarely arrived late.
Use an adverb of frequency to change the sentences
Example: They go home for Christmas.
Answer: They always go home for Christmas.
- She rings her boyfriend at lunchtime.
- The Irish government hold press conferences at 6pm.
- She can finish her dinner at 7pm.
- They are late for work.
Adverbs of Frequency in Negatives and Questions
We can also make negative sentences and questions using adverbs of frequency.
To make a negative sentence, we use: subject + auxiliary verb + adverb + main verb
I don’t usually go away for the weekend.
He doesn’t often go swimming.
We use a similar structure for questions: auxiliary verb + subject + adverb + main verb
Do you often meet your friends for coffee?
Does she sometimes eat pasta for lunch?
Negatives and Questions
To make a question or negative sentence we use: auxiliary verb + adverb + main verb
Choose the correct adverb of frequency to complete the sentences..
Frequency: how often something happens.
On the other hand: however
Always: all the time.
Often most of the time.
Usually: normally or regularly.
Rarely: not many times.
Never: not ever.
I hope you enjoyed this post.
If you would like to learn more about adverbs of frequency, please check out our more advanced post on adverbs of frequency.