Sequence Adverbs | First, Next, After That, Finally

Listen to Jill remind Mike how to make fried rice.

Mike: So Jill. How do you make that fried rice again?

Jill: You've forgotten already? OK. First, you need to cook the rice. Then, while it’s cooking you can chop the vegetables. After that, heat some oil in the pan and throw in the chopped garlic. Then you can add the vegetables and finally, the rice. And don't forget, keep stirring as you add everything.

Mike: Is that it?

Jill: Yeah, it's really easy.

Mike: Wow, great. Thanks. I'm going to give it a go right now.

Jill: Good luck.

Mike: Thanks.

Grammar Notes

Point 1: Sequence adverbs often come at the start of a sentence or clause and act as a marker as to order.
  • First, heat the pan.
  • After that, you press the delete key.
  • Then you can make your correction.
Point 2: However, some sequence adverbs like 'first' and 'next'  can come at the end of a sentence or clause.
  • You have to boil the water first.
  • Press the red button next.
Point 3: 'Next', 'then' and 'after that' are interchangeable. They mark something between the start and finish.
  • First, go down Cane Street.
    After that turn left onto Oak.
  • First, get behind a rock.
    Then you can push the detonator.
Point 4: We often use sequence markers when giving instructions on how to do something, make something or go somewhere.
  • First, get a can opener,
  • Then, open the can of chili.
  • Next, put the chili in a bowl.
  • After that, put it in the microwave.
  • Once it is warm, you can eat it.
Answer these questions about the interview.

Keep Learning

Go here are some more great lessons!

Vocabulary Challenge

Grammar Practice
Complete the gaps with the words listed below.
read • turn on • walk
enter • open
  1. First, you need to to the computer room.
  2. Then, you need to the computer.
  3. Next, you need to your password.
  4. After that, you can your e-mail.
  5. Finally, you can your messages