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Present Tense Questions with Who / Why

We can ask questions using the question words who, what, where, when, why, and how. If a question starts with one of these words, it is not a yes/no question.

In this lesson, we will focus on the words why and who.
  • "Why" asks about a reason.
  • "Who" asks about a person.
Use this pattern to make a present tense question with a verb.

Question Word + do/does + subject + verb...?

Use "do" or "does" depending on the subject.
  • Why do you like him?
  • Why does it make that strange sound?
  • Who do you exercise with?
  • Who does he work with?
"Why" questions ask about a reason. So, you will hear the word "because" a lot when people answer.

A) Why do you take the subway to work?
B) I take the subway because it is cheaper.

A) Why don't you do yoga with your coworkers?
B) I don't do yoga with them because yoga is not interesting.

Many times, people shorten their answer when speaking and they will begin their answer with "because".

A) Why do you eat here every day?
B) Because it is cheap and delicious.

"Who" questions ask about a person or people. "Who" questions can be hard for new learners. "Who" can be the subject or object of a question.

When "who" is the object we are asking which person is the object of the sentence, not which person does the action.

Who + do/does + subject + verb...?

A) Who do you like to study with?
B) I like to study with Jamie.

A) Who does he like to eat lunch with?
B) He likes to eat lunch with Jill.

When "who" is the subject we are asking which person does the action. Put an "-s" after the verb because "who" is like one person. So, it is the same as he, she, it, or one person. However, the answer can be more than one person.

Who + verb (+s) + (infinitive/object/place/time)?

A) Who works here?
B) Tina works here.

A) Who drives this car?
B) Erin drives this car.

A) Who likes to work late on Friday?
B) Bill and David like to work late on Friday.

Get some extra practice here. Pay extra attention to see questions that use "who" as a subject and ones that use "who" as an object.

Example Questions
  • Why do you hate your job?
  • Why do you study English every day?
  • Why do you only eat a salad at lunch?
  • Why do we need to do this work?
  • Why do we have to work this weekend?
  • Why does she want to see that movie?
  • Why doesn't Mary like to go out with us?
  • Why does he love to camp?
  • Why does Jon need our help?
  • Why does Erin need to borrow some money?
  • Why does the computer not work?
  • Why do they hate each other?
  • Why do they want to buy a new house?
  • Why do they have so much stress?
  • Why do the managers have so many meetings?

  • Who do you study with?
  • Who do you like to go out with on the weekend?
  • Who do we need to call?
  • Who do we not need to send an invitation?
  • Who does he need contact?
  • Who does eat lunch with?
  • Who do they need to speak with?

  • Who works here?
  • Who likes to work on the weekend?
  • Who drives the blue car?
  • Who has a pet?
  • Who needs to do this job?
  • Who has to write the report?
  • Who cries during sad movies?
  • Who parks here?
  • Who works in this office?
English Conversation 1

A) I know this area very well. My sister works in that office over there.
B) I'm sorry. I didn't hear you. Who works in that office?
A) My sister does.
B) Oh really. So, do you meet her here a lot?
A) I meet her almost every day for lunch.
B) Why doesn't she eat with her coworkers?
A) She doesn't eat with them because she doesn't really like them.
B) That's too bad, but she is lucky to have such a nice brother.

English Conversation 2

A) Why do you want to cancel your trip this weekend?
B) I want to cancel because I have a lot of work.
A) What does your husband think?
B) He is not happy. He really wants to go.
A) Why doesn't he go with some other people?
B) That's a good idea. What about your husband?
A) I'm not sure, but I will ask him.

If you complete this simple practice, then you will learn to speak English fluently and improve your English grammar skills. Finish the questions below and then practice making your own questions. It is a simple yet great way to learn English.

Tip: Say the questions aloud. This will help you practice speaking English and improve your English fluency.

Who do you _______________?
Why do you _______________?
Who does he _______________?
Why does she _______________?
Who do they _______________?
Why do they _______________?
Why do dogs _______________?
Who _______________?

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