4. Questions, questions...

General knowledge

Here's a General Knowledge Quiz for you to try!

1.    Who won the football World Cup in 1992?
2.    What does the abbreviation "WWF" mean?
3.    What is the largest land animal in the world?
4.    How many legs does an insect have?
5.    How many times have people landed on the moon?
6.    When did the first moon landing take place?
7.    Which continent did Columbus discover in the 15th century?
8.    Why does a chameleon change colour?
9.    Who wrote Crime and Punishment?
10.   When did Elizabeth II become Queen of England?
11.   Do penguins live in the Arctic?
12.   Was Picasso French?

Click here for the answers

The point is that we can make questions in different ways. The question form depends on the verb form, the type of question (open or closed), and whether the question word is the subject of the question.

Open or closed questions

A closed question doesn't have a questions word, and has the answer "yes" or "no" (for example Questions 11 and 12 above).
An open question has a question word, and asks for a date, a name, a reason, etc. (for example Questions 1-10 above).

Different verb forms

Usually, we form a question using the auxiliary verb and the main verb, depending on the verb form needed. Examples for the verb forms we have already studied are in the table below. We can make closed or open questions in this way.

 Verb form
 Closed question
Open question
 Present simple
(do + infinitive)
 Do you like chocolate?
 Who do you usually play tennis with?
 Present continuous
(be + ing)
 Are you going on holiday this summer?        
 Where are you going?
 Past simple
(did + infinitive)
 Did you have a good time?
 When did you get home?
 Present perfect
(have + past participle)
 Have you ever eaten snails?
 What have you done today?

Question word as subject

Sometimes the question word (who, which, etc) is actually the subject of the question. In this case we don't use an auxiliary verb to form the question:
 Question word (Subject)
 verbobject / other information
object / other information
 Which city
 on the Seine?
on the Seine.

Now you can learn about superlative adjectives in the vocabulary section, and then create your own quiz on the grammar focus page.