We use the verb ‘do’

  • when someone performs an action, activity or task expressed by gerund (e.g. the shopping, the washing-up, the ironing);
  • when referring to work of any kind (e.g. work, housework, homework);
  • when speaking about things in general (e.g. something, nothing, What are you doing?)

 We use the verb ‘make’

  • for constructing, building or creating (e.g. make a dress)
  • when referring to preparing food of any kind (e.g. omelette, a meal – breakfast / lunch / dinner)

However, we need to learn the majority of expressions by heart:

Make

Do

amends

an appointment

arrangements

an attempt

the bed

believe

certain

a change

a choice

a comment

a complaint

a confession

a date

a decision

a difference

a discovery

an effort

an error

your escape

an exception

an excuse

a face

a fire

a fool of yourself

a fortune

friends

fun of

a fuss

an impression

a joke

a journey

a list

a living

a loss

a mess

a mistake

money

a move

a noise

an observation

an offer

a payment

a phone call

plans

a point

a prediction

a profit

progress

a promise

a remark

a reservation

a scene

a sound

a speech

a suggestion

sure

the bed

time (=find time to do something)

trouble

a visit

up one’s mind

your way

badly

one’s best

business

chores

a course

a crossword

damage

the dishes / the washing up

a drawing

your duty

an exam

exercise

an exercise

smb. a favour

the gardening

good

you good

your hair

harm

homework

housework

the ironing

a job

the laundry / the washing

your nails

a painting

paperwork

research

the shopping

time (= be in prison)

well

work

one’s worst

Exercises

1.Which expressions are illustrated in the pictures?

1)

2)

3)  

4)

5)

6)

7)

8)

9)

10)

2. Complete the sentences with the right form of ‘make’ or ‘do’.

1) ‘For God’s sake, stop … such silly mistakes. Think a bit before you act!’

2) ‘Please, … me a favour – switch off this terrible music!’

3) ‘If you don’t stop … this terrible noise, I’ll call the police!’

4) ‘I …so badly at the exam yesterday that I don’t know how to confess to my parents.’

5) ‘If you are dissatisfied with our service, you may … an official complain on our hotline.’

6) ‘When I need to … so much paperwork, I go crazy!’

7) ‘You’ve … such a mess here! Come on, tidy it up!’

8) ‘Sometimes you have to … a choice between your private life and your career.’

9) ‘I can’t … business with them! They are completely incompetent!’

10) ‘The research you’ve … is fantastic! It will help us boost our sales!’

11) ‘Someone needs to … the first move, otherwise you’ll never make peace. You love each other, so don’t be silly.’

12) ‘This company will not … you good, grandson. Listen to my advice, don’t mix with them.’

13) ‘Take this pill. It won’t … you any harm.’

14) ‘I’m head-over-heels in love with her and she just … jokes.’

15) ‘Late again! What excuse are you going to … now?’

Read these quotes again. Make background stories for them. Think of who could have said this and in which situations.

3. Put ‘make’ or ‘do’ in the right form to complete the questions.

1) Do you get really nervous when you have to … a public speech?

2) When was the last time you … someone a favour?

3) Do you always … the bed in the morning?

4) Do you know how to … a good first impression?

5) Do you sometimes enjoy … housework?

6) Do you … many phone calls during the day?

7) How often do you … the shopping for food?

8) Did/do you try to … your best at school?

9) Do you … important decisions easily?

10) Do you often admit it when you … a mistake?

11) Have you ever … a complaint in a shop?

12) Would you like to … business?

13) What do you need to do to … progress in learning English?

14) Do you enjoy … plans?

15) Would you like to … the gardening when you are retired?

16) Do you sometimes … promises that you can’t keep?

17) Who … the dishes in your house?

18) Did you … much effort to enter the university/get the current job?

19) When was the last time you … some reservation?

20) Have you … any appointments for the next week?

Answer these questions about yourself.

Additional

Additional

  1. Which expressions are illustrated in the pictures?

 

  1. Make a promise

  2. Do the gardening

  3. Do the shopping

  4. Make an appointment

  5. Do the dishes

  6. Make a phone call

  7. Make a prediction

  8. Make a choice

  9. Make a noise

  10. Make a payment