I wish I hadn't to go to work today.

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New Member
English- Australian
I'm an ESL teacher, and today in my class we covered 'wish' conditionals eg. I wish it would stop raining, i wish i had more money, etc

One of my students was persistent in asking why this sentnces was wrong, and no answer i gave her would satisfy. What explanation would you give her

Her sentence: I wish I hadn't to go to work today.
Correct sentence: I wish I didn't have to go to work today.

Any suggestions would be apreciated!
  • natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Welcome to the Forum, Nomes. :)

    I would say that have to is a kind of semi-modal, and therefore doesn't behave like other modals, like will or can. (I wish you wouldn't say that.)

    Have to is always negated with the operator do if there is no modal and not.
    • I have to rest. --> I don't have to rest.
    • They might have to stop. --> They might not have to stop.

    Giorgio Spizzi

    Senior Member
    HAVE is normally negated by NOT when it is the auxiliary employed to express a Perfect Tense (and in these cases it's followed by a Past Participle).
    When HAVE is a synonym of possess and when it's used as a pseudo-modal it is negated by DO + NOT. (ie just like any other predicative verb).

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