Well, that's a good question and also a common one for both native and non-native speakers. First of all let's take a look at the grammar, and then we'll take a look at examples and explanations.
Basically, good is an adjective, and well is an adverb. Now, you probably know what an adjective is, but you may not know what an adverb is. But let's go ahead and take a look at both:
What's an adjective? An adjective describes (or modifies) a noun.
An adjective answers the question: What kind....?
Ex. What kind of swimmer are you? I am a good swimmer.
Ex. What kind of apples do you prefer? I prefer green apples.
Ex. What kind of food do you like? I like Mexican food.
Ok, so what's an adverb? An adverb describes (or modifies) a verb, adjective or another adverb.
An adverb answers the question: How...?
*Note: Below the adverb is underlinded and the word the adverb modifies is in bold.
Ex. How do you swim? I swim well. (modifies the verb "swim")
Ex. How intelligent are you? I am extremely intelligent. (modifies the adjective "intelligent")
Ex. How well do you swim? I swim very well. (modifies the adverb "well")
Examples & Explanations.
Now that we know the difference between an adjective (good) and an adverb (well), let's take a look at some examples. Remember that "good" modifies nouns and "well" modifies verbs:
Ex. He is a good writer. He writes well.
Ex. We are good students. We study well.
Ex. They are good workers. They work well.
I think you get the idea now...But you may be wondering: Why is there so much confusion between good and well? It's something that my mother always corrected when I was a child. Let's take a closer look.
"Well" is an irregular adverb. With regular adverbs we normally just add -ly:
Some adverbs (like "well") are irregular. Here is a list of irregular adverbs:
Lastly, let's take a quick look at the following examples. Don't these sentences sound strange?
- "Sir, you are driving too
- "She's working
- "You work
goodwell under pressure."
Does that make sense? Well, if it doesn't, just leave a question below ;)