“Coz these are things that I, all by myself, can do.
Set, raise, and lay are words that you choose
When each one has an object after it to use.
- Lie has an I—and I alone can do it (it is not done TO something else).
- I lie in bed at wide awake.
- Yesterday I lay awake half the night.
- Before that I had lain down when the cat jumped on me.
- Lie means to stretch out in a flat position—anybody or anything can lie, as long as it does it by itself (i.e. it is NOT laid)
- She lies down with a headache every day.
- The sun is lying low.
- She has lain down for a nap.
- Lay must have an object following it—something that it is being laid down.
- Lay your book on the table.
- He laid his money down.
- She has laid the towels in the sun.
- Base form: lay—I lay the kids’ clothes out every day. (Tricky: lay is the base form of lay (to put something down; it is also the past tense of lie—to stretch out by yourself or itself.)
- Past simple: laid—Yesterday I laid the pink pants out for Jon.
- Past participle: laid—Before the dog came in, I had already laid his bones out.
- Third person singular: lays—He lays the book down every night at ten.
- Present participle/gerund: laying—I am laying the swim suits out to dry.
- Again, do sit/set first (all same base word for tenses of set!) or rise/raise (since many people get this pair correct even if they do not know sit/set and lie/lay very well).
- Do rise/raise after sit/set or sit/set after rise/raise (saving lie/lay for last).
- Memorize acronym/rhyme to cement the fact that all three with I’s are the ones that are done by someone or something (not to something).
- When you get to lie and lay, to lie first all by itself until it is memorized. Then do lay. (I am starting to wait a week between the two with lots of practice on lie during that week before moving on to lay.)
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