“To Be Going To” As A Future Verb Of Intention: The Usage Guide
The English language is always evolving. Some words get phased out and new ones come in, some phrases are used more than others, and other phrases are phrased differently depending on the situation. No language is static.
Now that we’ve explained how language changes over time, let’s take a look at the verb ‘to be going to’ and how it is changing its meaning from where it came from (the future) to what it means now (future intention).
Future Verb of Intention
When you want to express future intention using the verb “to be,” you can do so by using the construction “to be going to.” This is a very common way to form the future tense in English, and it is considered completely standard. In fact, many native speakers would say that it sounds more natural than using “will” to express future intention.
The construction “to be going to” is made up of two parts: the present tense form of the verb “to be” (am, are, or is) plus the word “going” followed by the infinitive form of the main verb. For example, if you want to say that you are going to study English tonight, you would say “I am going to study English tonight.”
Here are some more examples of how to use “to be going to” to express future intention:
• We are going to have a party next weekend.
• She is going to start her own business.
• They are not going to move to a new house.
• I am not going to tell him what happened.
• Are you going to quit your job?
• Is he going to come with us?
In each of the examples above, you can see that the construction “to be going to” expresses future intention. The first part of the construction (the present tense form of “to be”) indicates that the action is going to take place in the future, and the second part (“going” plus the infinitive form of the main verb) indicates what is going to happen.
When is it appropriate to use
The auxiliary verb “to be going to” is used to express future tense in English. It indicates that something is planned or expected to happen in the future.
We often use “to be going to” when we have already decided to do something
I’m going to study English tonight.
Are you going to the party on Saturday?
They’re not going to like this news.
We can also use “to be going to” when we can see that something is about to happen:
Look at those dark clouds! It’s going to rain.
Hurry up! The bus is going to leave without us.
In these cases, we don’t necessarily have a specific plan or decision about the future event. We are just expressing what we think will happen based on what we can see or know in the present moment.
It’s important to note that “to be going to” is not always used for every future event. For example, we usually don’t use “to be going to” if we are talking about scheduled events such as plane flights, meetings, and classes:
My flight arrives at 2 p.m. tomorrow. (not “is going to arrive”)
The meeting starts at 3 o’clock sharp. (not “is going to start”)
If you’re not sure whether to use “to be going to” or another verb of intention, there are a few things you can keep in mind. First, “to be going to” is used for future plans that have already been decided or arranged. For example, if you’ve already bought a ticket to a concert, you would say “I’m going to see Taylor Swift next week.”
Second, “to be going to” can also be used for future predictions based on evidence in the present. For example, if you see dark clouds and hear thunder, you might say “It’s going to rain.”
Finally, “to be going to” is sometimes used informally to express determination or resolve. For example, if you’ve just started a new diet and someone offers you a cookie, you might say “I’m not going to eat that.”
Keep these guidelines in mind next time you need to use a verb of intention!
To Be Going To Present Tense Examples
When we want to talk about the future, there are a few different ways to do it. We can use the present tense, which refers to the future as happening now or in the present moment. For example:
“I am going to the store.”
This means that you are currently on your way to the store, or you will be going to the store very soon.
We can also use the future tense, which refers to an event that will happen in the future. For example:
“I will go to the store.”
This means that you are not currently on your way to the store, but you will be at some point in the future.
Another option is to use the “to be going to” verb phrase. This is used to talk about future plans or intentions.
“I am going to go to the store.”
This means that you have a plan or intention to go to the store at some point in the future.
To Be Going To Future Tense Examples
To be going to future tense is used to describe plans or intentions for the future. It is made up of the construction “to be + verb (infinitive) + going to.” For example, “I am going to study English.”
“Are you going to eat that?”
“No, I’m not going to eat it.”
“What are you going to do after graduation?”
“I’m going to travel for a while and then look for a job.”
“I think it’s going to rain.”
“I’m going to buy an umbrella just in case.”
Thank you for reading!
This was written by me. Bryce Purnell, founder of Learn Laugh Speak.