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QUESTION: Are these sentences correct?correct them please if they are incorrected.
He said to me that he didn't like John.
He told me," I like to see john".
He tells, "I am sleepy".
My mom says, "l like you".

ANSWER: Hello Dan,


I assume these are supposed to be direct speech sentences, except for the first which is indirect speech. If that's the case, here are my thoughts:

He said to me that he didn't like John. >>> correct

He told me," I like to see john". >>> correct even though I'd say "I'd like to see John" and obviously John needs to be capitalized

He tells, "I am sleepy". >>> incorrect. This should read: He said, "I am sleepy".

My mom says, "l like you". >>> incorrect. This should read: My mom said, "I like you".

I hope this helps.

Best,

~Amy

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Why is the last sentence  incorrect? My mom says, "I like you".
Can't we use "say" in the present tense?

Answer
Most times when we use the direct speech we tell someone about a conversation that happened previously, but in some instances we can also report something that's being said now.


If that's what you had in mind above, then "My mom says, "I like you". is correct

Also the sentence above could read: He tells me, "I am sleepy".

I wasn't sure if all your sentences above were supposed to talk about previous events so it looks like my assumption was wrong. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

Best,

~Amy

English as a Second Language

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Amy Baker

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I can answer question about grammar, spelling, syntax, idioms, reading and/or writing that pertain to English as a Second Language. I am knowledgeable about both TOEFL and IELTS.

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I'm a certified ESL teacher with 12 years of experience teaching K-12 and adults.

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BSc MEd TESL post grad program for k-12 TESL post grad program for adult ed

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