This lesson focuses on the words ‘too' and ‘enough'.
They can both be used with adjectives, adverbs and nouns… But there are a few grammar rules you need to remember to use them correctly!
Too and enough indicate a degree (or amount) in English sentences.
too = more than necessary
enough = the necessary amount
not enough = less than necessary
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Hello, I'm Emma from English!
I'm too hungry to concentrate!
You're good enough to start a conversation in English!
I haven't got enough time.
In this lesson, you'll learn how to use these little, useful words correctly in English sentences.
Too and enough. Both of these words indicate a degree. They give us more information about an adjective or an adverb or a noun.
I'm too hungry to concentrate!
So, here ‘too' means that it is more than what is wanted or what is needed. So, it's usually a negative thing! You are more hungry than you want to be! This is really frustrating for you because you can't concentrate!
You're good enough to start a conversation in English!
So here, ‘enough' tells us that it is the amount that we want or we need. It's the right amount and this is a positive thing! You have what is needed, you are good enough.
You're not good enough!
Ouch! That is really mean!
Ouch! That is really mean! ‘Not enough' means that it is less than the amount that you want or you need. It's a really negative thing. It's a pretty mean thing to say.
So, let's look at the structures for each of these words with adjectives and adverbs first.
Too + adjective/adverb
So, ‘too' comes before an adjective or an adverb.
He's driving too fast.
You're speaking too quickly for me.
He's too old to drive.
Remember that using ‘too' with an adjective or an adverb usually suggests that it's a negative thing. It's more than what is wanted or needed. So, it's not correct to say that the movie was ‘too good' when you really enjoyed it! It's also not correct to say that your friend is ‘too funny'. It sounds really strange to native English speakers because it suggests that it's more than what you want or what you need it to be. Use ‘really' or ‘very' or ‘so' instead.
Your friend is so funny!
The movie was really good!
That sounds better!
There are some exceptions to this though, when you're speaking colloquially – especially in Australia, where I'm from! Like… For example, if someone asked me, “How are you?”
I'd probably say, “Not too bad.”
This is really common in Australia and it means ‘good' but that's an exception.
adjective/adverb + enough
Okay, what about ‘enough'? ‘Enough' comes after the adjective or the adverb.
I'm strong enough to lift those boxes.
It's warm enough to go for a swim.
He is entertaining enough to perform on stage.
You're here often enough, you might as well live here!
Now, what about when ‘enough' is used in a negative sentence? ‘Enough' comes after the adjective or the adverb but ‘not' comes before.
I'm not strong enough to lift those boxes.
And this has the same meaning as ‘I'm too weak'.
It's not warm enough to go for a swim.
…Which means ‘it's too cold'!
too + much/many + noun
You can also use ‘too' and ‘enough' with nouns. Use ‘too' with ‘much' or ‘many' and a noun. So again, this means that we have more of the noun than we want or we need. You would choose ‘many' if the noun was countable. And you would choose ‘much' if the noun was uncountable.
There are too many people here.
Paul has too much furniture in this room!
I've got too many options, I can't decide!
You can never give too much advice.
Now, if you are not sure about which nouns are countable and which are uncountable, you should check out this lesson right here because I'll explain it for you there!
enough + noun
So, what about ‘enough'? Well, with a noun ‘enough' comes before the noun. Again, this means that we have the right amount, the amount that we want and that we need.
I have enough time.
There are enough seats in the car, you should come!
We have enough money, let's buy it!
And to make these sentences negative we add ‘not' – usually before the main verb.
I have not enough time.
She didn't earn enough money.
We haven't made enough food.
There aren't enough people here.
The ‘be' verb is a bit of an exception here, to the rule. The structure is a little different. When the ‘be' verb is the main verb, then ‘not' comes after the main verb.
So, these handy little words will definitely help you to express yourself more clearly in English and now you know exactly how to use them correctly.
Make sure you practise them. Write some examples if you want, add them in the comments below!
Remember that ‘too' means that it's more than the necessary amount.
‘Enough' is the necessary amount, it's the exact amount. And ‘not enough' is less than the necessary amount.
And if you've managed to make it through this lesson all the way to the end then you are going to get a special reward because you're about to find out how you can get mmmEnglish courses for under five dollars!
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And now, check out that lesson right there and practise using ‘enough' and ‘too' with the adjectives that I teach in that lesson. Or, if you want to try something else check out that playlist right there. Keep practising and I will see you again next week! Bye for now!
mmmEnglish Video Lessons are a series of video lessons created to build confidence in English learners and focus on English in daily life. Download them and watch them anywhere! Subscribe to my YouTube Channel to be the first to get my new videos, and come and say hi on my Facebook page!!
really interesting and taking learn a different
I'm an English teacher for Russian speaking students. For some reason English is rather difficult to learn for most of them.
I've watched a few videos of yours on Utube. I like your style and liked the simplicity of some of your videos.
Could you please make more videos in the dialogue form (like the one you made with Shah at dinner) using simple but conversational language?
For example, you take the Present Simple and, using it along with the Present Continuous, make another simple kitchen dialogue. Then in another video you add the Past Simple and so on …
You don't have to explain much: we, English teachers, will do it for you. Just speak in that natural, lively, stylish, unaffected way of yours (but be simple with your language).
Thanks a lot for the job you are doing. Hope to see more of you.
Sincerely yours, George.
P.S. Sorry if I sounded didactically.
Hi can you helpe me to learn english
Thank you so much Emma for this interesting lesson. Please, could you give us more examples with the verb to ‘have' when it's the main verb in a sentence that we want to make negative by using ‘enough+noun'. In effect, in the example you gave to us; “I have not enough time”,'not' comes after the verb to ‘have' the meaning verb, like in the sentence; “There aren't enough people here.” Does the exception of the verb to “be” apply to the verb to “have” when it's the mean verb in a sentence?
It Is very useful lesson to learn correctly grammar rules and I hope to be anymore relating to tenses
really it is very good lesson thank you emma and all your staff
You're welcome, Karim!
Thanks so much for this great lesson.
Could you check this?
Your here often enough, you might as well live here!
Isn’t it “you’re here often enough, you might as well live here!”
You're correct Christian! I did make a mistake. Well done on noticing that and thank you for telling me. I have fixed the error in the transcript 🙂
thank you emma you're lessons are very useful for me .i love you so much.
Great post. I'm facing some of these issues as well..
I have seen your lesson after I have taught one of my classes about Too and Enough, so now the second class I used some tips of yours and they are quite helfpul. Thank you very much!!
I am saving your website for further lessons ^_^
I'm so glad to hear that!! Thank you for your comment 🙂
Where should ‘too' be used when using ‘I don't…
How about “Not enough to….not”
Can both sides be negative?
If it’s possible, could you give me a few examples??