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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > How do you say...    

How do you say...



Buzybeee
Poland

How do you say...
 
Hi!
I have a question. Let s say that there is a lesson and you do some art project and there is a lot of litter or trash etc and a student wants to stand up and put it in the dustbin. What would he/she say?
Can I go to the dustbin?
Can I come to the dustbin?
Can I throw away trash?
 
I m wondering because on each lesson with my 7 year olds we put some useful phrases on the board like Can I go to the toilet, Can I erase the blackboard etc and in Poland you can t leave your sit without permission. So I m wondering what a student should ask in this situation?

29 Mar 2009      



eng789
Israel

Can I go to the dustbin? - good
 
Can I throw away my trash?    sounds better  
 
Can I throw the/ my trash in the garbage (can).
 
Can I throw away some trash?
 
I think these are all good possibilities.

29 Mar 2009     



Nebal
Lebanon

Hi Buzybeee,

Well, it s either May I throw away my trash? Or May I throw the wastes in the dustbin?
 
I m sure u ll get more possibilities, but all are almost the same.
 
Hugs,
Nebal

29 Mar 2009     



eng789
Israel

Nebal - you are probably right,  May should be used for asking permission.
 
But, native speakers usually don t stick to formalities - that s why I automatically went with can - even if it doesn t mean - asking permission. 

29 Mar 2009     



Buzybeee
Poland

Thanks for your help :-)

29 Mar 2009     



Spagman63
Hong Kong

Nebal,
Wastes is a verb. What you mean is waste.  May I throw my waste into the bin?

2 Apr 2009     



mendiv
United States

As a native speaker (American, not British), I would say, "May I throw away my trash?" and I would expect my students and my son to do the same.  Another option would be, "May I take these to the trash can (or dustbin)?"

When children ask my permission for something and they use can instead of may I don t give permission.  My native Eng. speakers should remember the right way of asking on their own.  With my ELL students I say it correctly and ask them to repeat so that they can get used to using may . 


2 Apr 2009