🏁 Learn the saying: After could, would and should, always HAVE, never OF.

🔆 If you can remember never to use ‘of’ after words like could, would and should, go to Skill 34.

They should have come to the
rescue sooner.

🛠 Need more? Read on.

After words like could, would and should, we always use have or the short form ‘ve, never of, even though that’s what the ‘ve  form sounds like. This is because these words only work with other verbs. Once you’ve practised a few exercises, you probably won’t make this mistake again, but it’s very common.

🎯 📝 This exercise asks you to rewrite the sentences below which use of wrongly. You have to replace all the of  words with ‘ve or have.

I could of got home earlier but I missed the bus.
He should of stayed in as he went out and got into trouble.
She would of bought the white car but the black one was better.
They could of won the league but they lost to a last minute goal.
It would of been better to get to school earlier so we weren’t late.

✅ Your answers should look like this:

I could‘ve got home earlier but I missed the bus.
He should‘ve stayed in as he went out and got into trouble.
She would‘ve bought the white car but the black one was better.
They could‘ve won the league but they lost to a last minute goal.
It would‘ve been better to get to school earlier so we weren’t late.

Remember, you could also have written them like this example:

I could have got home earlier but I missed the bus.

🚦Time for one last thing?

🎓 This rule applies to all auxiliary verbs, which is what words like ‘could’ are. Of is a preposition, and can’t follow this type of verb.

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