Gerunds and Infinitives

We use Gerunds and Infinitives as subjects.

  • Often an infinitive phrase is used with it as the object of a sentence: It is difficult to learn a second language.
  • A gerund phrase is frequently used as the subject of a sentence: Learning a second language is difficult.
  • An infinitive can also be used as the subject of a sentence: To learn a second language is difficult.
  • The phrase for (someone) may be used to specify exactly who the speaker is talking about: It is easy for young children to learn a second language. Learning a second language is easy for young childrenTo learn a second language is easy for young children.

Task 1. Create sentences beginning with it. Use a form of the given expression in your sentence, followed by an infinitive phrase.

Example: be dangerous – It’s dangerous to ride a motorcycle without wearing a helmet.

  1. be important
  2. not be easy
  3. be foolish
  4. must be interesting
  5. be always a pleasure
  6. be clever of you
  7. not cost much money
  8. be necessary
  9. take time

Task 2. It + infinitive. Add for (someone) and any other words to give a more specific and accurate meaning to the sentences.

Example: It isn’t possible to be on time. – It isn’t possible for me to be on time for class if the bus drivers are on strike and I have to walk to class in a rainstorm.

  1. It’s easy to speak Spanish.
  2. It’s important to learn English.
  3. It’s essential to get a visa.
  4. It’s important to take advanced math courses.
  5. It’s difficult to communicate.
  6. It was impossible to come to class.
  7. It is a good idea to study gerunds and infinitives.

Task 3. Complete the sentences. Use gerund phrases as subjects.

Example: … isn’t easy. – Climbing to the top of the mountain isn’t easy.

  1. … is hard.
  2. … can be interesting.
  3. … was a good experience.
  4. Does … sound like fun to you?
  5. … demands patience and a sense of humour.
  6. … is a complicated process.
  7. … is considered impolite in my country.