Adverbs of frequency
We use adverbs of frequency – like sometimes or usually – to say how often we do things, or how often things happen.
I never have any problems with adverbs of frequency.
OK, let's see what you know. We use adverbs of frequency in this order, according to their meaning.
Are there any missing?
I think that’s most of them. You could include frequently, with usually. We use not very often too.
Very good, you’re right. These are the most common adverbs, although there are more.
They always hang out together.
The Northern Lights are usually green.
You normally see them best in September or March.
It’s often cloudy.
What do you notice about the position of the adverbs?
They are usually before the main verb, or between the auxiliary and the main verb. But they come after the verb to be.
Excellent! Can they also be at the beginning or the end of the sentence?
Yes, I think so. “Sometimes I'm alone.” That sounds OK.
Yes, we can use some adverbs of frequency at the beginning or end of a sentence for emphasis.
Occasionally I meet her for a coffee.
We can use usually, often, sometimes and occasionally at the beginning of a sentence, and sometimes and often at the end. We use adverb expressions like a lot or not + (very) much after the main verb too.
She travels a lot.
He doesn’t study very much.
Be careful with never. It is already negative, so we can’t use it with not.
I never go to the supermarket with my mother.
I’ve just remembered some more expressions! What about once a week, twice a year, etc.?
Oh yes, I’d forgotten about those.
Take the medicine three times a day.
We usually go swimming twice a month.
You see them once in a lifetime, if you travel.
You see, I’m not always annoying.
OK, sorry. I’m not always right either. Usually, but not always!