Free Chinese Mandarin Grammar Lessons For All levels-“可以kěyǐ,会huì,能néng“

‘会’(huì),‘能’(néng), ‘可以’(kěyǐ) all mean ‘can,’ but what exactly the differences between them, why sometimes I see someone use“可以kěyǐ” when other people use“能néng”? I hope this article will help you to master them. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. (https://linktr.ee/NatashaLu ),

Note: This grammar summary is for all levels.

会huì:

1.Know how to(Emphasizes skills acquired through learning.)

E. g.:我会说汉语wǒ huì shuō hàn yǔ–I can speak Chinese。

2.Likely to Happen(emphasize the subjective possibility)

E.g., 我喝咖啡会睡不着Wǒ hē kāfēi huì shuì bùzháo。–I can’t sleep when I drink coffee.

E.g.:我觉得明天会下雨wǒ jué dé mínɡ tiān huì xià yǔ。–I suppose it will rain tomorrow.

能nénɡ :

1. Indicating an ability.

(1)Inborn ability doesn’t need to learn.

E.g:我有眼睛,所以我能看wǒ yǒu yǎnjīng, suǒyǐ wǒ néng kàn。

–I have eyes, so I can see.

(2) the ability is up to a level or Achieves a specific efficiency.

E.g:她一分钟能打70个字tā yì fēn zhōnɡ nénɡ dǎ 70 ɡè zì 。

–She can type 70 words a minute.

(3). lost some ability for the moment, because of some reasons or recover the ability(not able to )

E.g., 他好多了,能下床了tā hǎo duō le , nénɡ xià chuánɡ le.

–He’s much better and can get up now.

2. Emphasize the objective possibility, usually used before a verb.

E.g:我今天有事,不能去你家wǒ jīn tiān yǒu shì , bù nénɡ qù nǐ jiā。

–I have something to do today and can’t go to your house。

E.g., 他认识很多人,他能帮你tā rènshi hěn duō rén, tā néng bāng nǐ

–He knows a lot of people, he can help you.

3.“能nénɡ….吗ma?”=“能不能nénɡ bu nénɡ” is often used to indicate a request or hope for permission(here is equal to one of the meanings of“可以ké yǐ,” please check the end of the article).

E.g:我能坐这里吗?wǒ nénɡ zuò zhè lǐ mɑ ?

=我能不能坐这里?wǒ nénɡ bu nénɡ zuò zhè lǐ ?

–Can I sit here?

Note: The definite answer we usually use:可以ké yǐ ,Negative answer is:不能bù nénɡ.

可以ké yǐ :

1.“May” or to be allowed to (have been granted permission)

E.g:我可以进去吗?wǒ ké yǐ jìn qù mɑ ?

–May I come in?

E.g:妈妈,我可以吃糖果吗?mā mɑ , wǒ ké yǐ chī tánɡ ɡuǒ mɑ ?

–Mom,Can I eat candy?

E.g:我可以坐这里吗?wǒ ké yǐ zuò zhè lǐ mɑ ?

=我可不可以坐这里?wǒ kě bu ké yǐ zuò zhè lǐ ?

–May I sit here?

2. advise

E.g., 如果你有问题,你可以问你的老师rúguǒ nǐ yǒu wèntí, nǐ kěyǐ wèn nǐ de lǎoshi.

–If you have questions, you can ask your teacher.

E.g., 现在不下雨了,我们可以出去玩了。Xiànzài bùxià yǔle, wǒmen kěyǐ chūqù wánle.

–It’s not raining now, we can go out and play.

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可以 and (kěyǐ/néng)

1.ask for possibility or permission – 可以kěyǐ/能néng

E.g: 我 可以/能 用你的书吗?wǒ kěyǐ/néng yòng nǐ de shū ma?

—May I use your book?

E·g: 我 可以/能 进来吗?wǒ kěyǐ/néng jìnlái ma?

–May I come in?

E·g: 你 可以/能 帮我吗?nǐ kěyǐ/néng bāng wǒ ma?

–Can you help me?

2. prohibition – 不能bùnéng/ 不可以bùkěyǐ

E·g: 你 不能/不可以 这样做nǐ bùnéng/bù kěyǐ zhèyàng zuò.

–You can’t do like that. (forbidden)

E·g: 你 不能/不可以 在这抽烟nǐ bùnéng/bù kěyǐ zài zhè chōuyān.

–You can’t smoke here.

Tips: ‘ 不可以’(bùkěyǐ) is only used to express prohibition. ‘不能’(bùnéng) is used to express impossibility because of some reasons.

💖If you still can’t figure out how to use them, please book a 1 on 1 tutoring lesson with me, and let’s practice:)

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