Visitors :

Please place a pin on
the guestmap to show
where you come from.

Free Guestmap from

Many thanks for all your encouraging messages.

Guestmap information
Follow us on Facebook

Custom Search

English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.


(purpose or reason)

It is sometimes not clear what structure to use to talk about the use of an object
as opposed to the reason for using the object .
  • Use or function of things/objects

    To explain the function of an object, what it is used for, we use for followed by
    a noun or a verb in the -ing form.

    • What is this sponge for? = What is its purpose or function?
      It is for cleaning the sink.

    • What's the new suit for? = What are you going to wear it for?
      It's for my new job. I want to make a good impression!

    • What's that knob for?  It's for turning on the radiator.

  • Reason for doing something

    To explain why we do something, the reason for which it is done,
    we use the infinitive (ex: to do)

    • What do you use this sponge for? (=  Why do you use it/what do you do with it?)
      I use it to clean the sink.

    • Why did you turn on the radio? (= What did you turn the radio on for?)
      I turned on the radio to listen to the news.

    • Why do you study every day?
      I study every day to improve my level of English.

    • Why did you go to London.
      I went to visit Buckingham Palace.

back to grammar list