Grammar: Am/Is/Are being + Adjective

In this episode from Perfect English Podcast, you will learn about the special meaning and use of the verb to be in the present progressive form, am/is/are being plus an adjective. Listen to the episode first and then check your understanding by taking a short quiz to practice what you have learned.

Perfect English Podcast Episode 22 Audio

Perfect English Podcast Episode 22 Quiz

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Mark the adjectives that can be used to complete each sentence.

I don't approve of Ann's behavior. She is being _____.

Please select 3 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

Mark the adjectives that can be used to complete each sentence.

A: You shouldn't act like that, Tommy. You're not being ______.

B: Okay, Dad. I'm sorry.

Please select 3 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

Mark the adjectives that can be used to complete each sentence.

Don't pay any attention to Johnny. He's just being _____.

Please select 3 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

Mark the adjectives that can be used to complete each sentence.

A: There's something different about Tom today.

B: What do you mean?

A: He's being so ______ today.

Please select 2 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

Mark the adjectives that can be used to complete each sentence.

The children are being awfully ______ today.

Please select 2 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

Perfect English Podcast Episode 22 - Grammar: Am/Is/Are Being + Adjective Quiz
Perfect English Podcast Quiz - Episode 22

Perfect English Podcast Featured Image Episode 22

Check your understanding of the use of verb to be in progressive based on the information from Perfect English Podcast Episode 22

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Episode Transcript

0:12
Welcome to a new episode from perfect English podcast. Today we’re gonna talk about some grammar. And to be specific, we’re going to focus on the use of M is our being plus an adjective. We use the verb to be with an adjective, usually to express a state of meaning, like when we say and is sick today or Alex is nervous about the exam, or Tom is tall and handsome. These are old states and we usually use verb to be with an adjective to express that state of meaning. But sometimes, the main verb to be plus an adjective is used in the progressive. It is used in the progressive when it describes temporary or in progress behavior. For example, We can say, jack doesn’t feel well, but he refuses to see a doctor. He’s being foolish. What I mean when I say he’s being foolish is that Jack’s foolishness is temporary, and probably uncharacteristic of him. If I say jack is foolish. What I mean is jack is like that all the time. Or at least I don’t want to imply the fact that this is a temporary thing, and it isn’t uncharacteristic of him. Let’s take another example. Sue is being very quiet today. I wonder if anything is wrong. Now because she’s being very quiet. That means she’s not usually like that. Usually she’s talkative, she’s lively, etc. So she’s being very quiet today. Something must be wrong. I wonder if anything is wrong. So you can see how specific but very useful the use of M is our being plus an adjective can be Pay attention. This expression cannot be used with all adjectives. For example, we cannot say Mr. Smith is being old, we say Mr. Smith is old, old cannot be temporary. We cannot say that he is being old. Usually he’s not old, but just today or just at the moment he’s being old doesn’t make any sense. Now here are some examples of other adjectives that cannot be used with em as are being. For example, we can’t use angry with this expression, because you’re either angry or not. And here are some examples of other adjectives that cannot be used with em as are being. For example, we can use angry, beautiful, handsome, happy, healthy, hungry, lucky, nervous, sick, tall, thirsty young. We can’t use these adjectives with em as our being, because these do not describe a temporary behavior. But here’s a list of some adjectives that can be used with Am is our being. We can use bad when it means ill behaved or good when it means well behaved. We can use careful, cruel, fair, foolish, funny, generous, illogical, impolite, irresponsible, kind, lazy, logical, loud, nice, noisy, patient, pleasant, polite, quiet, responsible, rude, serious, silly, unfair, unkind, unpleasant, because all of these can describe a temporary behavior. And if you notice, all of the adjectives we used here are adjectives we can control, we can be good as well behaved or bad, Ill behaved. We can decide to be polite, or decide to be kind or decide to be unkind. So it is a decision. So when we say somebody is being polite, we mean that this is a temporary behavior, and we may be kind of surprised To see that coming from this person, so remember B plus an adjective expresses a state of meaning. M is our being plus an adjective describes temporary in progress behavior. And that’s enough grammar for one day. I’ll see you in the next episode. I hope you have learned a lot today and I’m pretty sure that your English is a step closer to perfect English. This was your host Danny, don’t forget to subscribe. I’ll see you next time.

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