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Thread: "to infinitives"

  1. #1
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    Default "to infinitives"

    I think I'm missing something. My JTE sent me an email. She said:
    "Now they are studying about 'to infinitive' to express a reason;
    ex) I was surprised to hear this."

    What's confusing me is the "express a reason." Is there a reason being expressed in "I was surprised to hear this" or does that sentence as a whole somehow express a reason? I'm probably just being dumb, but I'm not getting it so maybe if someone says something else, it'll make sense. Is "to hear this" the reason for "I was surprised"? Is that what she means? If it's that simple, then I guess I'm having a total mental-block when it comes to thinking of other examples following the same format.

    Anyways, if you can bring some clarity into this, that would be great. It's probably all very simple, but my brain isn't cooperating today, so maybe just another example would make it click. Also, rather obscure, but if anyone has an activity for practicing this particular grammar point, let me know.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: "to infinitives"

    Seems like her example has nothing to do with expressing a reason.

    Expressing a reason is like, 'I went to JUSCO to buy a pineapple' or 'I bought a pineapple to make pineapple cake'

    'I was surprised to hear this'....shit what is that? It's certainly not expressing the reason. unless she's getting onto something else entirely and I'm missing something.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: "to infinitives"

    I was surprised because I heard this. I was surprised to hear this.

    Still, strange example to use...

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    Default

    Okay, so I'm not just nuts. Maybe she just made a mistake with her example (I hope). I'm thinking about it more, and like you showed, can think of a ton of examples of using an infinitive to give a reason. It's just that none of them are quite like the "I was surprised to hear that" example. I think I'll go with the sensible sort of use and hope that's what she meant. Unless someone else is magically seeing what katsudon and I can't...

  5. #5
    Senior Member ampersand's Avatar
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    Default Re: "to infinitives"

    Is she talking about "[feeling] to [verb's base form]"?
    - surprised to hear ~
    - sad to see ~
    - happy to go ~

    While it's "to"+[base form], I think it's technically not the infinitive in the same way that the present participle and the gerund look the same but aren't the same thing.
    "I have ... relations... with many of the students." -- Sai1

  6. #6
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    Default Re: "to infinitives"

    Yeah, Delekii, that makes sense... Hm. It could also be that she meant what ampersand mentioned, though. She didn't ask me to teach it, just asked me to come up with an activity for it. So I suppose what I can do is take the easy way out. I'll pull out my handy sheet of blank comic strips and tell them to work in groups and make something up using that grammar point.

  7. #7
    Senior Member ampersand's Avatar
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    Default Re: "to infinitives"

    Why don't you ask her for clarification?
    "I have ... relations... with many of the students." -- Sai1

  8. #8
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    Default Re: "to infinitives"

    Several reasons: It doesn't really matter since I was probably going to do the comic strip activity anyways, I'm not going to have much of a chance to check my email between when she would reply and when I get to the school, and finally (the really lame reason) because I'm super shy and she makes me nervous.

    I might ask her about it when I get to the school, but for the most part, I just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something painfully obvious about her explanation.

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