Intermediate English Grammar (B1) Lesson 15 of 25

Second Conditional

Read and listen to four conversations using the grammar.

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Conversation 1

Man: So, if you were the boss, what would you change about the company?
Woman: Well, first, I would let people work from home.
Man: I would like that. What else would you change?
Woman: I would also let employers set their own schedule.
Man: I would love that. What hours would you work?
Woman: It would change day by day. If the weather was nice, I would work at night.
Man: And if the weather was bad?
Woman: Then I would work during the day. What about you?
Man: I’m not sure. Maybe I would do the same.
Woman: See.Things would be better around here if I were the boss!

Conversation 2

Man: If you could go back to school, what would you study?
Woman: I think I would study something practical like computer engineering.
Man: What would you do with a degree like that?
Woman: I would develop apps to help people stay fit I think because I love exercise. What about you?
Man: Well, If I could study anything, I would study something I love like art history.
Woman: Oh, that sounds interesting. Would you want to be a teacher?
Man: No, but perhaps I could write books or be a tour guide at a museum.
Woman: I like your idea. That sounds nice.

Conversation 3

Man: If you were in charge of the country, what would you do?
Woman: Well, first, I would make health care free for everyone.
Man: I agree, I would do the same. What about education?
Woman: No, I wouldn’t make education free, but I would make it more affordable.
Man: I like that idea. I might make it free though.
Woman: What about you? If you could do one thing, what would you do?
Man: If I were president, I would change the tax system so it is fair for everyone.
Woman: Me too. I think the world would be a better place if we were in charge.
Man: I think so too!

Conversation 4

Man: If you won the lottery, what would you buy?
Woman: I think I would buy a house. I would like to live in the mountains.
Man: What else would you do?
Woman: I would probably buy a new car.
Man: That would be nice.
Woman: What about you? What would you do if you won the lottery?
Man: Well, I would quit my job and travel the world.
Woman: Would you buy a new house or car?
Man: No, I would lively cheaply, so I would never have to work again.
Woman: I think I would still work. I would get bored if I didn’t have a job.
Man: To each his own I guess.

Second Conditional

Point 1:  The second conditional refers to the future, when there is little chance of the action happening.
  1. What would you do if you won the lottery?
  2. I would quit my job. What would you do?
  3. I would move to the beach.
  4. I would do that too if I could swim!
Point 2:  The 'if' clause can start the sentence or come at the end of the independent clause.
  1. I would be very happy if I saw a full eclipse.
  2. If I saw a full eclipse, I would be very happy.
  3. If I were tall, I would try out for the basketball team.
  4. I would try out for the basketball team if I were tall.
Point 3: Instead of would in affirmative sentences, you can use 'd instead.
  1. I'd be very happy if I saw a full eclipse.
  2. If you saved your money, you'd be rich.
  3. If they came to class more often, they'd pass.
  4. If we practiced more, we'd be pretty good.
Point 4: We can use 'could' instead of 'would'.
  1. I could travel the world if I were a billionaire.
  2. If I spoke Spanish, I could work in Costa Rica.
  3. If you tried harder, you could get an A in the class.
  4. If you saved your money, you could afford to travel.
Answer these questions about the interview.

Gap Fill: Complete the conversation with the correct word!

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I usually eat as soon as I get home.

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B1-13 Subordinating Conjuctions - Reason
Well, since you were not here, I can’t pay you.

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B1-14 Subordinating Conjuctions - Conditionals
Yes, I'm going unless I get stuck at work.

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B1-15 Second Conditional
Things would be better around here if I were the boss!

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