It takes + Infinitive

Express how much is needed to do something

Putting make up on
 

 

It takes [quantity +time] to…

IT TAKES + INFINITIVE

Use it takes to indicate a quantity of time required for anyone to complete a task (job).  The amount may be an estimation (a guess) or an exact, known quantity.

It takes an hour to get ready for school in the morning.

It takes 10 minutes to shower.

It takes 30 minutes to walk to school.

It takes just a few seconds to reach the 2nd floor. 

IT TAKES + INDIRECT OBJECT + INFINITIVE

It takes may be used to indicate a quantity of time required for a particular person to complete a task (job).

It takes Jill an hour to get ready for school in the morning.
It takes an hour for Jill to get ready for school in the morning.

It takes Jill 10 minutes to put on her makeup.
It takes 10 minutes for Jill to put on her makeup.

It takes us 30 minutes to walk to school.
It takes 30 minutes for us to walk to school.

It takes her just a few seconds to reach the 2nd floor. 
It takes just a few seconds for her to reach the 2nd floor.    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It takes…

Amount of Something

paper training

 

 

 

 

It takes [quantity +noun] to…

IT TAKES + INFINITIVE

It takes with a quantity of something  (count or noncount) expresses how much is needed to complete a task (job). The amount may be a guess or an exact, known quantity.

It takes a lot of newspaper to house-train a puppy.

It takes three yards of material to make a dress.

It takes fifteen gallons of gas to fill the tank of this car.

It takes a lot of love to raise children.  a noncount abstract noun
 

NO INDIRECT OBJECT

It takes is NOT used with an indirect object before a quantity of matter (solids, liquids or gases) or with abstractions.

*It takes anyone a lot of newspaper to house-train a puppy.

*It takes you three yards of material to make a dress.

*It takes me fifteen gallons of gas to fill the tank of this car.

*It takes us a lot of love to raise children.

 

It takes is also used with abstractions: love, patience, knowledge, kindness, etc.
*Yellow highlighted words are examples of incorrect usage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Common Mistakes

Errors and Solutions

 

 

 

Error and Solution

ERROR

*It takes me six eggs to make this cake.

*It is taking six eggs to make this cake.

*It's take six eggs to make this cake.
 

SOLUTION

It takes me six eggs to make this cake.  
It takes me six minutes to get there.
An indirect object is only used before a quantity of time.

It takes six eggs to make this cake.   Progressive tense is not used in this expression.

It takes six eggs to make this cake.  subject-verb agreement error

 

Related page  Spelling out numbers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice 1

Planning the Next Day

Guy planning
 

 

Read Context

Tomorrow, I will be pressed for time, but if I schedule things, I can get them all done.  I'll need to do a few extra things.

At 7:30, I will get up, shower, and get dressed.  (30 minutes)

Next, I will eat breakfast, eat and read through my email. (30 minutes)

After that, I will have to drive to the gas station and fill up my car.  (15 gallons / 56 liters)

The fuel will probably cost me around $60 / 80€.

Then, I will stop by the bank to get some cash ($200). I need to pay my utilities bill tomorrow. ($150)

Next, I will drive to work and spend the morning and afternoon in a company-review meeting.

We will need several cups of coffee to stay alert.

I will need a lot of concentration to get through such a long meetings.

At five, I will go to the gym and lift weights for a couple hours with friends.

I'll make an omelet for dinner(a few eggs) That will satisfy my appetite.

I should spend just a few minutes on the computer, but I usually end up spending over an hour reading my email and catching up with friends.

Last, I will fall into bed and probably be asleep in a few seconds.

alert (adj.) – awake and clear-thinking

appetite (n.) – hunger

concentration (n.) – staying focused; paying close attention

end up (verb expression) – result in

firm (n.) – strong; not weak

satisfy (v.) – meet the requirement or need; be enough

tasks (n.) – small jobs, chores

utilities bill (n.) – charges for gas, electricity, and water usage

 

 

 

 

Complete the sentence with an "It takes…" expression.

  1. Select the response from the list that best completes the sentence. 
  2. Compare your response to the feedback by clicking the "Check" or the "Check 1-12" button.

 

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.
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6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

11.

12.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice 2

Jimmy — he's so slow!

brothers
 

 

Read for Errors

My little brother, Jimmy is so slow before school.  It's taking him forever in the morning to get dressed.  He sits and stares at his clothes, but he doesn't put them on.  It takes him a lot of energy just to get his pants and shirt on. 

For me, it takes me five minutes to eat my breakfast. It takes for him fifteen minutes to eat his breakfast — five minutes to choose it and ten minutes to eat it.

Then, it takes him a lot of time in the bathroom to brush his teeth.  Mom always reminds him to hurry up because it takes us a while to get to school if there is traffic. 

My mom takes a lot of patience to wait for him all the time.  It takes a big brother like me to look after him. — Jessie

patience (n.) – being able to wait for something or someone without becoming angry

stare (v.) – look at something for a long time, especially with eyes wide open

 

 

 

 

 

Correct or Incorrect?

  1. Select a response correct or incorrect.
  2. Compare your response to the feedback by clicking the "Check" or the "Check 11-20" button.

 

13.
My little brother is so slow before school.  It's taking him forever in the morning to get dressed.

     

14.
He sits and stares at his clothes, but he doesn't put them on.  It takes him a lot of energy just to get his pants and shirt on.

     

15.
For me, it takes me five minutes to eat my breakfast

     

16.
It takes for him fifteen minutes to eat his breakfast.

     

17.
Then, it takes him a lot of time in the bathroom to brush his teeth. 

     

18.
Mom always reminds him to hurry up because it takes us a while to get to school if there is traffic.

     

19.
My mom takes a lot of patience to wait for him all the time.

     

20.
It takes a bigger brother like me to look after him. — Jessie

     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice 3

Putting It All Together

toothpick bridge
 

 

Read for Errors

materials: toothpicks, glue and graph paperMy partner and I made a bridge from toothpicks for our science class. We had to made a bridge that could support four bricks. The followings is what is needed to build a bridge from toothpicks:

  • a simple but strong design.
  • four boxes of flat toothpicks.
  • one bottle of wood glue
  • graph paper
  • two dollars
  • two attempts (tries)
  • four hours of building
  • one hour of drying
  • a box for carrying it to school
  • a  lot of persistence

brick (n.) – a red, rectangular block of clay; used for building

materials (n.) – things, parts that will make up the bridge (toothpicks and glue)

persistence (n.) – being able to stay with the project, try again and again

toothpick (n.) – a little stick of wood for cleaning food from the teeth

scale (n.) – relative size of the parts to the whole

"The Toothpick Bridge." PiSymphony. N.d. Web. 2 Jan 2014.

 

 

 

 

Write an instruction for the requirements using an "it takes".

  1. Edit the sentence(s) in the text box.
  2. Compare your response to the feedback by clicking the "Check" or the "Check 21-30" button.

 

21.
A simple but strong design is needed to build a bridge from toothpicks.


22.
Four boxes of flat toothpicks are required to build the structure.


23.
One bottle of wood glue is needed to put the structure together.


24.
Graph paper is required to plan the shape and scale of the bridge.


25.
Two dollars are need to buy the materials for the bridge.  [a quantity is or are]


26.
We needed two attempts to make a really good bridge.


27.
Four hours were required to build the bridge.


28.
One hour was needed for the glue to dry.


29.
One box with padding was needed to pack the bridge so that we could carry it to school.


30.
A lot of persistence is needed to make the bridge a good and strong structure.