Hello and welcome.
In this lesson, I will teach you
the seven most common uses of the verb ‘get’.
So let’s start.
Before we get into the lesson, as always, if you
have any questions, just let me know in the comments
section below, and I will talk to you there.
Also, there is a quiz at the end
of hits lesson to test your understanding.
Now, the most common meaning of ‘get’ is to mean
receive, obtain, or buy something.
For example, “I got some old books from my
It means “I received some old books”.
In the next example, “We’ve gotten 50 emails in the
past three days.”
It means “We have received 50
Notice that the first sentence is in the past
simple tense and the second sentence is in the present
So in sentence number two, we are
using the third form of ‘get’ – the past participle
The verb ‘get ’ is irregular – that is, we
don’t say ‘getted’ to make the past simple or past
The correct forms are ‘get’,
‘got’, and ‘gotten’.
In American English, ‘gotten’
is more common, and in British English, ‘got’ is
the preferred past participle form.
So in number two, you could say
“We’ve got 50 emails”.
That would be the British
Here are two more examples: “Harry just got a job at
It means he obtained a job, or that he
was hired for a job at the airport.
And finally, “What are you getting me for my
It means “What present are you going to
buy for me for my birthday?”
OK, let’s move on to the second use.
In British English, the expression ‘have got’ is
used a lot to mean ‘have’.
It’s used in American English as well but it’s
more common in British English.
This expression is used in two ways – the
first is to talk about ownership or relationship.
For example, “I’ve got two sisters.”, “Sara has got
Wi-Fi at home.”, “Have you got time for a coffee?”
The second function is to express obligation or
necessity (that is, by using ‘have got to’ in the
place of ‘have to’).
Like in these examples: “You’ve
got to get up early tomorrow.”
or “He has got to learn German to live in
In all of these sentences, you can use
‘have’ or ‘has’ instead of ‘have got’ or ‘has got’ and
the meaning would be the same.
But there is an important point here.
When we use ‘have got’ in these two
ways, it does not have a past tense.
To change these sentences to the past, just
For example, say “Sara had Wi-Fi at home.”
which means she doesn’t have it now.
Or “He had to learn German to live in
Don’t use ‘had got’ to mean ‘had’ – it’s
Alright, the third use of ‘get’ is to make offers and
Take this question for example:
“Could you get me the menu, please?”
You might say this at a restaurant.
Here, ‘get’ means ‘bring’.
It’s like asking “Could you
bring me the menu?”
Instead of ‘the menu’, you can say
‘get me a cup of coffee’, ‘get me a sandwich’,
The next example, “Can I get you something to
drink?” is an offer.
Here, I’m offering to bring you
something to drink.
It’s very common to say this to
a guest, so the next time you have a friend over at
your place, ask your friend, “Hey, can I get you
something to drink?
Or something to eat, maybe?”
OK, let’s move on to the next use.
The verb ‘get ’ is often used when we want
to talk about traveling to mean to arrive or to reach
For example, “I got home late yesterday
evening because of the traffic.”
That means I reached home late.
A common question that is asked on
the phone is “What time will you get here?”
That means, what time are you
going to reach this place?
Here’s another common example: “I don’t think
we’ll get to the movie theater on time.”
That means, we’re running late –
we’re going to miss the start of the movie.
And here’s one last example –
“Call me as soon as you get to the office.”
Notice that in the first two examples, after ‘get’
we have adverbs – ‘home’ and ‘here’.
Because they are adverbs, we don’t use
But in the last two examples, we use ‘to’
because we have nouns – ‘the movie theater’ and
Alright, the fifth use of ‘get ’ is to mean to become
or to change.
For example, “The kids got really scared
when they saw the spider.”
That means they became scared.
In this type of sentence, you have ‘get’
followed by an adjective.
In the next example, “I’ve made sandwiches in case we
Similarly, “I keep forgetting things.
I think I’m getting old!”
This is a common expression and it’s said humorously
(that is, in a funny way).
In the final example – “Arnold and Erika got
married in 2011.”
The phrase ‘get married’ is
You will hear it a lot.
Other common ones are ‘get ready’, ‘get
dressed’, ‘get cleaned up’ etc.
OK, use number six is to talk about bad experiences
For example, “I got fired for being late to
That means, I went late to work and my boss
fired me (that is, I lost my job).
The next example is similar – “Vijay’s
wallet got stolen when he was walking in the park.”
So maybe he got pickpocketed.
Notice that both of these sentences are
in the passive voice.
“I got fired” means “My boss
“His wallet got stolen” means “Somebody
stole his wallet.”
The words ‘fired’ and ‘stolen’
are verbs in the past participle or the third
But you can also talk about bad experiences with
For example, “Don’t eat too much candy
or you might get sick.”
(‘sick’ is an adjective).
Or nouns such as “I got a cold from one of my
(‘a cold’ is a noun).
Alright, and the final use of the verb ‘get ’ is to
Probably the most common expression
in this meaning is “I don’t get it”.
This is an informal way of saying “I
don’t understand it.”
Another popular expression is the opposite – “I get
It means “I understand it.”
Or if someone (like your boss) gives you an
instruction like “Send me the report by tomorrow” you
might say “Got it!”.
It’s short for “I’ve got it”
meaning “I have understood it.”
A related expression is “Do you get what I’m
saying?” – this is also informal, and it’s just a
way of asking, “Do you understand what I’m
These are all useful expressions that you
can use in conversation.
Alright, if you’re ready, now it’s time for the quiz.
There are ten sentences on the screen, but you see that
they’re all jumbled up.
Stop the video, rearrange them
into correct sentences, then play the video again and
Alright, number one is “I got a new laptop for Christmas
from my dad.”
You can also say “I got a new laptop from
my dad for Christmas.”
Here, ‘got’ means ‘received’.
Number two – “Grace has got a great family.”
In this sentence, ‘has got’ means
‘have’, so it’s like saying “Grace has a great family.”
Number three – “You have got to eat a good breakfast every
‘You’ve got to’ means ‘you have to.’
Number four – “Could you get me a
glass of water?”
Here, ‘get’ means ‘bring’.
Number five – “Make sure you get to the
airport on time.”
‘Get’ means ‘reach.’
Number six – “What time do the kids get home
Again ‘get’ means reach here but we don’t
use ‘to’ because ‘home’ is an adverb.
Number seven is “My brother got engaged last
You could also say, “Last week, my brother got
This means he became engaged, that is, he
has agreed to get married to a woman sometime in the
Number eight – “Javier got arrested for drunk driving
You could also say “Yesterday, Javier got
arrested for drunk driving.”
We use ‘get’ or ‘got’ here to show that something bad
happened to Javier – he was arrested.
Number nine – “I don’t get why horror movies
are so popular.”
‘Get’ means understand in this sentence.
So it’s like saying “I don’t understand why horror movies
are so popular.
Why do people like them so much?”
And finally number ten is “It was
confusing at first but I get it now.”
Again, ‘get’ means ‘understand’.
OK, how many answers did you get right?
Let me know in the comments.
This lesson came from a request by four
viewers – Akbar Deen, Irwin Cornejo Retiz, Seema, and
Rakesh from Andhra Pradesh, India.
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And I will see you in another