English learners are often puzzled by expressions like GONNA or
WANNA that they often hear in movies or perhaps read in comic strips.
If they look up these expressions in a dictionary, they may not find them,
which increases the puzzlement even further.
In fact, these expressions do exist and can be found in good (big)
dictionaries. They are "informal contractions" or short forms of other
words that people use when speaking casually. They are not exactly slang,
but they are a little like slang.
For example, GONNA is a short form of "going to". If you say "going to"
very fast, without carefully pronouncing each word, it can sound like
Here are some of the most common informal contractions, with example
GIMME = give me
Gimme your money.
Don't gimme that rubbish.
Can you gimme a hand?
GONNA = going to
Nothing's gonna change my love for you.
I'm not gonna tell you.
What are you gonna do?
GOTTA = (have) got a
I've gotta gun.
I gotta gun.
She hasn't gotta penny.
Have you gotta car?
GOTTA = (have) got to I've gotta go now.
I gotta go now.
We haven't gotta do that.
Have they gotta work?