Grammar | Gerund or Infinitive Series

IELTS Lessons, written by Sam Morgan and Tom Speed

This is our third post on the topic of gerunds (verb+ing) and infinitives (to + verb 1). 

​A gerund or an infinitive can be used after the following four verbs but the meaning changes:
remember / forget / stop / try


  1. I remembered to feed the dog. (the remembering occurred before the action – I remembered and then I fed the dog)
  2. I remember feeding the dog. (the remembering occurs after the action – I am thinking about the time I fed the dog)


  1. I forgot to do my homework. (the forgetting occurred before the action – I didn’t do my homework)
  2. I forgot doing my homework. (the forgetting occurred after the action – I did the homework, but then I forgot that I did it)


  1. I stopped to talk to him. (an action was interrupted – I was doing something and then I stopped because I wanted to talk)
  2. I stopped talking to him. (an action has stopped – I don’t talk to him any longer)


  1. I tried to help him. (the action is too difficult to complete – I tried but failed to help him)
  2. I tried helping him. (It is unclear if I successfully helped him or not)

Let’s use this information on a quiz.

The Quiz

Choose the correct Form of the Verb

1. I remember _____ to my grandma’s when I was a child.
to go
2. I remembered _____ some flowers to give to Sally tonight.
to buy
3. I forgot _____ my mum and she was really angry!
to call
4. I have never forgotten _____ the science competition and the big medal they gave me.
to win
5. I reminded Max about us spending new year’s 1999 at Phil’s house because he had forgotten _____ there.
to go
6. We were driving to London when we stopped _____ a hitchhiker.
to pick up
picking up
7. I tried _____ smoking but I started again after a few months.
to give up
giving up
8. I tried ______ everyone to calm down and be polite and the argument became less heated.
to ask

Speaking Practice

 To help remember the lesson, it’s important to frequently practice the language. ​Record yourself answering the following questions. Listen back to the recordings and check for mistakes. Next, rerecord yourself and try and make your response perfect.
  1. Where do you remember going on holiday with your family when you were young?
  2. Have you ever forgotten to take something important with you?
  3. Have you ever tried learning to play a musical instrument?
  4. Do you have any bad habits you would like to stop doing?

​Now you should be a professional at using gerunds and infinitives. Next time you are reading a text, look out for how gerunds and infinitives are used and of course make sure you use them correctly in your writing and speaking.

If you have a question about today’s lesson, leave it in the comments section below and we will reply.

Now check out our Gerund or Infinitive? Quiz 4!