When you are referring to habitual actions-- actions that you always or never do When you are referring to unchanging truths When you are making general statements of fact When you talk about scheduled events in the near future
(habit) He always comes late to class. (unchanging truth) The sun rises in the east. (general statement of fact) They are friendly. (talks about scheduled events in the near future.) The train leaves tonight at 6 PM. simple present tense
I play tennis.She does not play tennis.Does he play tennis?The train leaves every morning at 8 AM.The train does not leave at 9 AM.When does the train usually leave?
ADVERB PLACEMENTThe examples below show the placement for grammar adverbssuch as: always, only, never, ever, still, just, etc.Examples:You only speak English.Do you only speak English?ACTIVE / PASSIVEExamples:Once a week, Tom cleans the car. ACTIVEOnce a week, the car is cleaned by Tom. PASSIVE
When an activity or situation began and ended at a particular time in the past--in other words, when an activity or situation is completed in the past To refer to past habits can also be used to describe past facts or generalizations which are no longer true.
(Completed action in the past) He was late to class yesterday. (Completed action in the past) We arrived three weeks ago. (Past habit) She always wrote a letter to her mother on Sunday night. (past facts or generalizations which are no longer true.) She was shy as a child, but now she is very outgoing. Simple Past Tense
Last night, week, year, month, Saturday,semester, etc.Yesterdayago Simple Past Tense
I studied I waitedYou studied You waitedS/he/it studied S/he/it waitedWe studied We waitedThey studied They waited Simple Past Tense
Sandy studied Japanese for five years.Al studied French when I was a child.Mark played the violin.He didnt play the piano.Did you play a musical instrument when youwere a kid?He didnt like tomatoes before.Did you live in Texas when you were a kid?People paid much more to make cell phonecalls in the past.
To indicate that an activity or event will take place at a time in the future
When I’m retired, I’m going to travel. Next week, we will work on punctuation. He is going to get his car fixed tomorrow. Our plane departs at noon next Friday. Future
TomorrowNext Saturday, week, month, year, etc. Future
I will stay Ill stayYou will stay Youll stayS/he/it will stay S/he/itll stayWe will stay Well stayThey will stay Theyll stay Future
I am going to stay Im going to stayYou are going to stay Youre going to stayS/he/it is going to stay S/he/its going to stayWe are going to stay Were going to stayThey are going to Theyre going to staystay Future
Sometimes the simple present tense or thepresent progressive tense are used to express afuture meaning. Usually these tenses are usedwhen scheduled events are being discussed.I arrive I am arrivingYou arrive You are arrivingS/he/it arrives S/he/it is arrivingWe arrive We are arrivingThey arrive They are arriving Future Tense
When an activity happened at an unspecified time in the past (before the present) When an activity has been repeated several times before now When an activity was very recently completed before now When an activity is not completed in the past to list the accomplishments of individuals and humanity.We use the Present Perfect to say that an action happened at an unspecified time before now. The exact time is not important.You CANNOT use the Present Perfect with specific time expressions such as: yesterday, one year ago, last week, when I was a child, when I lived in Japan, at that moment, that day, one day, etc.We CAN use the Present Perfect with unspecific expressions such as: ever, never, once, many times, several times, before, so far, already, yet, etc.
(unspecified time before now)They have already seen that movie. (repeated activity before now)We have visited New York City many times. (an action has recently been completed before now)I have just eaten. (action not completed in the past) I have studied Spanish for many years. Present Perfect Tense
Before Ever NeverSo far Already YetJust Recently Forsince Present Perfect Tense
I have studied . . . I have seen . . .You have studied . . . You have seen . . .S/he/it has studied . . S/he/it has seen . . .We have studied . . . We have seen . . .They have studied . . . They have seen . . . Present Perfect Tense
I have seen that movie twenty times.I think I have met him once before.There have been many earthquakes in California.You have grown since the last time I saw you.The government has become more interested inarts education.Man has walked on the Moon.Scientists have split the atom.
This tense is not used a lot. It can often be used interchangeably with the simple past because these tenses do not differ much in meaning. The past perfect tense refers to activities that happened before a specific time in the past. Example, He had visited her many times before she died. Form: had + past participle
(something occurred before another action in the past) I did not have any money because I had lost my wallet. She had never seen a bear before she moved to Alaska. She had visited her Japanese relatives once in 1993 before she moved in with them in 1996. She only understood the movie because she had read the book.
The examples below show the placement for grammar adverbs such as: always, only, never, ever, still, just, etc.Examples: You had previously studied English before you moved to New York. Had you previously studied English before you moved to New York?
Completed Action Before Something in the Past
The future perfect expresses the idea that an activity will occur before some future time. Example: She will have finished dinner before the game starts. Form: will + have + past participle
You will have perfected your English by the time you come back from the U.S. You are going to have perfected your English by the time you come back from the U.S.NOTE: It is possible to use either "will" or "be going to" to create the Future Perfect with little or no difference in meaning.
The Future Perfect expresses the idea that something will occur before another action in the future. It can also show that something will happen before a specific time in the future.
By next November, I will have received my promotion. By the time he gets home, she is going to have cleaned the entire house. I am not going to have finished this test by 3 oclock. Will she have learned enough Chinese to communicate before she moves to Beijing?
When an activity is in progress now at the moment of speaking When an activity began before now and continues into the future without stopping. When an activity is temporary. When an activity is developing and changing.
I’m explaining something to the class right now. He’s taking 16 credits this semester. She is understanding English more and more because she moved into the dorm. Present Progressive Tense
Right now, at this StillmomentThis year, week, As we speakmonth, etc. Present Progressive Tense
I am studying Im studyingYou are studying Youre studyingS/he/it is studying S/he/its studyingWe are studying Were studyingThey are studying Theyre studying Present Progressive Tense
This tense is used to refer to activities continuously in progress around a time in the past. Example: They were eating when the taxi arrived. Form: was or were + verbing
This tense is used when an activity was continuously in progress before a specific time in the past. Example: I had been thinking about her before she called. Form: had + been + verbing
This tense is used to describe actions that have been continuously in progress before now. These actions are not completed. Example: I have been waiting here for the last two hours. Form: have or has + been + verbing
This tense is used to refer to activities that will be continuously in progress around some future time. Example: We will be flying over New York at noon tomorrow. Form: will + be + verbing
This tense is used to refer to activities that will be continuously in progress before a future time. Example: He will have been working for 3 hours before you arrive. Form: will + have + been + verbing
PRESENT PERFECT (have or has + past FUTURE PROGRESSIVE (will or participle of verb) shall +be + "ing" form of main verb) I have studied English. He has studied English. I will be studying English. He will be studying English. PAST PERFECT (had + past participle of PRESENT PERFECT verb) PROGRESSIVE (have or has + I had studied English. been + "ing" form of main verb) He had studied English. I have been studying English. He has been studying English. FUTURE PERFECT (will or shall + have + past participle of verb) I will have studied English. PAST PERFECT PROGRESSIVE He will have studied English. (had + been + "ing" form of main verb) PRESENT PROGRESSIVE (form of "be" I had been studying English. verb + "ing" form of main verb) He had been studying English. I am studying English. He is studying English. FUTURE PERFECT PROGRESSIVE (will or shall + PAST PROGRESSIVE (past tense of have + been + "ing" form of main form "be" verb + "ing" form of main verb) I was studying English. verb) He was studying English. I will have been studying English. He will have been studying English.
The charts in this presentation were adapted from the work of Betty Schrampfer Azar. She is the author of Understanding and Using English Grammar and many other useful ESL texts.
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