Learn English Expressions: JUST IN CASE

{“en”:”Hello. My name is Emma and in today’s video I am going to teach you about a very important piece of vocabulary — it’s also very important when it comes to grammar — and that is the expression: “Just in case” or we can also say: “in case”. So, we use this a lot in English, so it’s very… It’s something very important for you to learn. So let’s talk about what it means and how we use it.

So, we use: “in case” or “just in case”-we use both-when we are talking about doing something to prevent a problem. Okay? So we’re talking about… Or doing something to prepare for a problem. So, we’re looking at a problem and we’re looking at preparation or prevention of that problem. Okay? So, for example: “Tonight, I am going to a restaurant.” I’m very excited. Now, the problem is I get cold very easily, and when I’m cold I’m not a very nice person; I get very cranky, and I’m not a good person to be with when I’m cold. So my problem is I get cold easily. What is my prevention or preparation for this problem? Well: “I will bring a sweater just in case I get cold.” Okay? And that way I will have a great time at the restaurant, hopefully. So my problem is being cold, and my preparation is I’m going to bring a sweater.

So, as you can see, if you think about life, we have a lot of these types of problems and we do a lot of things to prepare for these types of problems. So let’s look at some other examples. Okay, a problem is when it rains… Okay? A lot of the times when it rains, you know, I don’t like getting wet, so what do I do? Well, my preparation or prevention is I bring an umbrella, or maybe I’ll bring a rain jacket.

Okay? So: “I will bring an umbrella just in case it rains.” Another problem is if you work at 9am, you know, a lot of the times there’s a lot of cars; everybody’s going to work at the same time, there’s a lot of traffic. And if there’s a lot of traffic maybe you’ll be late for work. So what will you do for this problem? So, traffic is the problem or maybe going to work late is the problem, but what you can do to prevent or prepare for this problem is you can leave your house early.

So: “I leave my house early every day just in case there’s traffic.” Another example of a problem is maybe you’re going to visit your friend, and your friend gives you their address. Now, if you don’t write down their address, you’re going to be lost. I don’t know where they live. I need to go to my friends’ house, I forget their address; I don’t know where they live. So this is the problem. Especially if you’re very forgetful like me or you always forget people’s phone numbers or, you know, where people live, this is a big problem.

So what do you do to prevent this problem? Well, you write down their address. Okay? On a piece of paper, your friend tells you their address, you write it down. Why do you write it down? “You write down their address just in case you forget it.” Okay? You forget their address. So I’ve just given you some examples of where we would use “just in case”. There are a lot of examples for “just in case”. I want you to think about your life.

Is there something that happens every day to you, maybe you have some sort of problem or something you worry about? So think about that for a second. Is there something you worry about every day, and what do you do to prepare for that or to prevent a problem from happening? Okay? Maybe, you know, you’re worried about failing your test, so you might create a study group just in case. Okay? Or maybe, you know, your teacher gives you homework. Maybe you will do the homework just in case they want to see it. So, you see what I’m saying? There’s a lot of problems you might have, and a lot of preventions or preparations you do for those problems.

So try to think of one in your own life. Okay, so now we are going to look at the grammar of “just in case” or “in case”. Okay, so we’ve already looked at what are problems, and how we prepare or prevent problems. Now let’s look at some examples of: How do we create this sentence in a grammatical fashion? So, I have here the sentence: “I will bring an umbrella in case it rains.” Do you remember what the problem is? The problem is it rains, and the preparation is bringing an umbrella.

I have another sentence. “I will leave my house early in case there is traffic.” So, again, traffic is the problem, and leaving my house early is the preparation or the prevention of a problem. So, I have a couple of questions for you about the grammar. Okay? I want you to look at the sentences, both of these sentences: Is the problem…? So the problem we’re talking about, do you see the problem before or after the expression “in case”? So where is the problem? So we find “in case”.

Is the problem before “in case”, up here; or is the problem after “in case”? It’s after, right? So, “it rains” is the problem, so: “in case it rains”, these go together. What about down here? “…in case”, is the problem before the word “in case” or is it after the word “in case”? Well, the problem is traffic, so the problem comes after the word “in case”. Okay? So if it helps you to remember: “in case”… So we wouldn’t write this in a sentence. This is… We won’t put these brackets in a sentence, but just to help you in your head to remember: “in case” is with the problem, so these are like one unit, if that makes sense. Okay. And so if the problem comes after “in case”, what comes before “in case”? The preparation or the prevention. So after “in case” is the problem, before is the prevention or the preparation. Okay, so what verb tense comes after “in case”? So when we’re talking about the problem, what is the verb tense that we use when we’re talking about the problem? So I want you to look, here’s the verb and here is the other verb.

Is this the past, the present, or the future? If you said the present, you are correct. We use the present tense when we use “in case”. Okay? And so: “in case it rains”, we could put this… You know, imagine if I said: “I will bring a sweater in case it gets cold”, so the part after “in case” is always in the present tense. Okay. So another question you might be wondering: “Do ‘in case’ and ‘just in case’ mean the same thing? Can I use either, ‘in case’ or ‘just in case?'” “I will bring an umbrella just in case it rains” or “in case it rains”, they’re both correct. It’s your choice; you can use whichever one you prefer.

Okay, and these two sentences use the word “will”: “I will leave my house early”, “I will bring an umbrella”, so this is talking about, you know, doing something in the future, right? “In the future I will bring an umbrella”, or “In the future I will leave my house early”. Do we always use “will” when we use…? When we’re making these types of sentences? Can I say: “I always bring an umbrella in case it rains” or “I brought an umbrella in case it rains”? Can I use the past, present, or future, or is it always the future? Actually for “just in case”, you can use “will”, you can use the past tense, or you can use the present tense when you’re talking about the preparation. So the problem… We’re talking about a future problem, this stays in the present tense; but in terms of the preparation, it depends on when you do the preparation. So the key question here is: When did you prepare, or when did you prevent the problem? So I’ll give you some examples. Imagine for this one: Yesterday I brought an umbrella to work because today I knew it would rain.

So if in the past, if yesterday or earlier today, you know, I brought an umbrella, we could change this to: “brought”. “I brought an umbrella in case it rains”. “…in case it rains” stays the same. Okay? It’s always in the present. But before the preparation we can use the past. Or what about if, you know… For example, the second sentence, imagine I always leave my house early, every day. Okay? I always do it. It’s a routine. “I will leave my house early in case there’s traffic.” If it’s a routine and it always happens, I can use the present tense here, I can say: “I always leave my house early in case there is traffic.” Okay? Or if we’re talking about something I’ll do in the future to prepare: “I will leave my house early in case there is traffic.” So, bottom line, the key point here, the thing that you really got to remember: After “in case” this is always the present.

Okay? So, after the words “in case”, the verb is the present; but when you’re talking about what you’re doing, the preparation, it depends on when you prepare. If you’re preparing… If the action of preparing is in the past, you use the past; if it’s a routine that you always do, you use the present; or if it’s something you’re going to do, use the future. Okay? So let me think if I can give you another example. Okay, if we think about a test and studying, I can say: “I studied hard for my test yesterday in case my test is hard.” Or, sorry: I studied…

Yeah. “I really studied for my test yesterday in case the test is hard”, so we have it in the past, I studied in the past. Now if, you know, maybe I always study for a test and I always really study hard for a test, I can say it in the present: “I always study for a test in case it’s hard.” Or, you know, maybe I’ve never done that before, but maybe tomorrow I’m going to study, I can say: “I will study, you know, for my test in case it’s hard.” Okay? So it depends on when you’re doing that action. All right, so we’re going to look at a couple more examples, you know, to get you more practice and more familiar with “in case” and “just in case”. Okay, so in my life I get hungry a lot. And just like when I get cold I’m not really a happy person, when I get hungry I’m not a happy person.

So in order to make sure I stay happy, I always try to have food with me. So, for example, I’ve made a sentence with “just in case” or “in case”: “I brought a sandwich today in case I get hungry.” So what’s the problem here? The problem is when Emma’s hungry she’s a horrible person to be around. Okay? So, we have a problem: Emma’s hungry. So, what do we do to make sure Emma, you know, stays like a happy person? Well, we make sure she takes a sandwich with her, so that’s the preparation. Okay? And, again, after “in case” we have the problem, before we have the preparation. Okay, and this, again, is in the present tense. And this one is in the past tense because I already brought the sandwich. Okay? This is something I did this morning. Now, it is possible to change the structure of the sentence around.

You don’t have to, so if you think: “Wow, Emma, today I learned a lot, I don’t want to, you know, learn anymore”, that’s okay, you’ve learned a lot. But if you’re interested, we can also change the sentence and put it in the opposite way. So what do I mean by that? Well, in this case “in case” is the second part of the sentence; we can also put it as the first part of the sentence. “In case I get hungry,”-so it’s the exact same words, we just add a comma-“I brought a sandwich”. So it’s your choice, they have the exact same meaning. You can start with “In case” or “in case” can be in the middle of the sentence. But when you start with “In case”, just make sure you remember the comma. Up here there’s no comma. Okay? So, for a lot of people this is easier because they, you know, forget their commas, but we do use both. Okay, let’s look at another example. “I always keep medicine at home in case I _______ sick.” Okay? So if you think about it, a lot of people will have medicine for headaches, or for when they catch a cold, they keep medicine at home.

So what’s the problem here? The problem is getting sick. Okay? So, the problem is getting sick, and how do we prepare for that? Well, we have medicine at home. So, after “in case” I want to use the verb “get” here. What do I need to do to the verb “get”? Is it going to be in the past tense as in “got”, do I say “get”, or “will get”? What tense do I use? If you said “get”, which is the present tense, you are correct. Yay. Good for you. I hope you got that. “I always keep medicine at home in case I get sick.” And, again, this is in the present because it’s something we do as a routine, we’re always doing this. Okay, so the last example: “I’ll go early just in case there is a line.” So imagine you’re going to the movie theatre, and you know a lot of the times with movie theatres there’s a long line up -that’s a problem.

A long line up is a problem, so what do you do to prevent that problem or to prepare for it? Well, you go to the movie theatre early so you can line up and make sure you get a good seat. So, in this case I’ve used the word “just in case”. “I’ll go early to the movie theatre just in case there is a long line.” Do I need to use, like, all of this? Can I just say: “I’ll go early just in case”, and not even say this? That’s possible. So if you don’t even want to do this, you can actually just say: “I’ll go early just in case” as long as the person you’re talking to knows, like, the context and can understand what you’re talking about, and it’s obvious, you know, what you’re doing, you can just use “just in case” instead of the full sentence.

Okay? So, even up here: “I always keep medicine at home”, you probably keep medicine at home in order… Like, in case you get sick, it’s kind of obvious, so if you wanted to, you can just say: “…just in case”. Okay? So there’s a couple of ways we can use “just in case”. You’ve learned a couple of different ways today. You will hear all of these different variations in conversation, in movies, on TV. Again, “just in case” and “in case” is very common and very important; we use it a lot.

So you might hear any of these variations of it. So, I hope you have enjoyed this lesson. And just in case you want to practice more, you can come visit our website at www.engvid.com, and there you can do our quiz. Now, in case, you know, maybe you didn’t understand the video, like, completely or maybe there’s some confusion, in case you’re confused, watch the video again.

Okay? You can get a lot from watching these videos multiple times. I also want to invite you to come subscribe to our channel; there you can find lots of other videos on things like pronunciation, vocabulary, writing, IELTS. You know, we have so many different types of videos and, you know, on a lot of useful things like grammar and, you know, all sorts of different types of topics. So I really recommend you check that out. Until next time, thanks for watching and take care.. “}

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