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Present simple and present continuous


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Differences between the present simple and present continuous tenses. Some examples to help you understand the use of them.

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Present simple and present continuous

  1. 1. Present Simple and Present Continuous Do you know the difference between them?
  2. 2. Present Simple • A regular repeated activity. We often use it with adverbs or adverbial phrases of frequency: sometimes, never, occasionally, every day, on Saturdays, once a week, etc. He attends the board meeting every Monday. I catch the 8’clock train every Monday.
  3. 3. • Something that is generally true; a statement of fact. Water boils at 100 degrees centrigrade. • With stative verbs, that is, verbs that describe feelings, thoughts and states rather than activities. “I don’t understand”.
  4. 4. • Instructions. (We can use the imperative or the present simple for instructions.) You mix the soup with some cream. • In clauses of time and condition, referring to the future. It is used after: when, if, unless, before, after, as soon as, etc. Buy some milk when you come home.
  5. 5. Present Continuous • For an activity in progress at the moment. She’s doing her homework. • An activity that is taking place in the present time period and will continue for a limited time. It is often used with these days, this week, today, this month, etc. We are painting the house this week.
  6. 6. • A situation that is in the process of changing. The number of cars on the road is increasing rapidly each year. • A future arrangement. Are you going to the party on Saturday?
  7. 7. Careful! Some verbs have one meaning in the simple form, but a different meaning in the continuous form. I have a bike. = I own a bike.( in general) We are having a great time. It’s a great day! (at the moment)