Expressing Wishes (in Present) and Hopes in English (speaking lessons)

EFL/ESL English speaking lessons 

Expressing hopes and wishes in English 

What is hope?

Expressing hope – Hope is to want something to happen and to think it is possible to happen. We use hope when we talk about things that are possible, both in the present and the future. We use hope to express goodwill as well. This lesson helps you understand how to use hope (in the present and future) and wish in (the past). The below table includes the possible structures of using hope in English

The rules of using hope  in English

  • Use this rule: Subject + hope + subject + verb (infinitive)
  • You can use this rule:  Subject + hope + that + subject + verb (infinitive)
  • or this rule: Subject + hope + subject + will + verb (infinitive)

Examples of using hope in English:

  • She hopes you call her soon.
  • He hopes he will take his money soon from the manager.
  • She hopes that I meet my new friends soon.
  • My father hopes the test will not be difficult for me
  • I hope I pass the test next Tuesday.
  • They hope that they will finish the project before September. 

What is a wish?

Expressing wish – A wish is to want something to happen or to be true even though it is unlikely or impossible. The following table shows how to use wish (in the present ) in English.

The rules of using wish in English:

  • Subject + wish + subject + verb (simple past)
  • Subject + wish + that + subject + verb (simple past)

Examples of using Wish in English :

  • I wish I had a car.
  • I wish she didn’t come at all.
  • She wishes she got a good grade on the exam.
  • My mother wishes I cleaned my room.
  • They wish they were good at English.
  • We wish we had enough money.

Note: when we express wish in the present, we refer to hypothetical situations that don’t actually exist in the present. For example:

  • I don’t have a car…..will be expressed like this….I wish I had a car
  • I don’t understand Math …….will be expressed like this….. I wish I understood Math
  • I’m stupid……………..will be expressed like this……..I wish I weren’t

As you can see:

  • The negative form becomes positive and the positive form becomes negative.
  • The present tense becomes the simple past.



Check your understanding


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