First, read about first conditionals below. Then, when you are ready, try these first conditional practice exercises.

Using the first conditional

if you go out tonight

First conditionals talk about a possible future situation and its result.

If you go out, you'll have fun.

Careful! The first half looks like the present simple, but it's a possibility in the future.

We often use this form to make promises or threats, or to negotiate.

I'll buy you a present if I go on holiday. (promise)

I'll hit you if you do that again! (threat)

If you lend me £5, I'll buy you a drink later. (negotiation)

 

How to make the first conditional

If + present simple (for the future situation), will/won't + verb (for the result).

If you don't help me, I won't finish my work.

Things to remember:

  • It doesn't matter if you say the situation or the result first.
    I'll help you if you want = If you want, I'll help you.
  • You can use unless to mean if (you) don't.
    I won't go shopping if I don't have time.
     = I won't go shopping unless I have time.

First conditional: advanced points

You can use present simple, continuous or perfect to give the possible situation.

You can use any expression which talks about the future for the result.

A possible situation:

  • If he works too hard ...
  • If he's still working at midnight ...
  • If he hasn't finished by midnight ...

... and its result:

  • ... he's going to be tired.
  • ... he might be tired tomorrow.
  • ... please tell him to go home.