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PRESENT SIMPLE

USE:
To talk about actions, states or events which happen at any time, repeatedly, or all the
time.
STATEMENTS
AFFIRMATIVE
FORM:
Verbs take an -s ending in third person singular.
[SUBJECT + VERB(s) + REST OF SENTENCE]
I/You/We/They

work

in a bank.

He/She/It

has

brown eyes.

SPELLING
Verbs ending in ss, sh, ch, x, o take -es in third person
singular: kisses, matches, goes, watches
For verbs ending in consonant + y, drop the y and add -ies:
carry/carries, try/tries, copy/copies
NOTE: The Present Simple is often used with adverbs and adverb phrases that indicate
frequency: Always, Never, Often, Sometimes, Usually, Every day/week, On Sundays,
Twice a month, year, etc.
NEGATIVE
FORM:
[SUBJECT + DO NOT/DON'T + VERB + REST]
I/You/We/They

don't

drive in the city.

He/She/It

doesn't

have brown eyes.

YES/NO QUESTIONS
FORM:
[DO + SUBJECT + VERB + REST OF SENTENCE]

Do

I/you/we/they

know

them?

[DOES + SUBJECT + VERB + REST OF SENTENCE]


Does

he/she/it

like

milk?

WH-QUESTIONS
FORM:
Questions about the SUBJECT:
[WH-WORD + VERB + REST OF SENTENCE]
Who

lives

here?

Questions about the REST OF THE SENTENCE:


[WH-WORD + DO/DOES... VERB...]
Where
When

does
he live?
do
you go home?

ANSWERS
FORM:
[YES,

SUBJECT +

DO/DOES]

Yes,

do.

Yes,

he

does.

[NO,

SUBJECT +

DON'T/DOESN'T]

No,

we

don't

No,

she

doesn't.

TAG QUESTIONS

If "yes" is expected:
[AFFIRMATIVE SENTENCE + DON'T/DOESN'T + SUBJECT]
You drive,

don't

you?

Carl paints,

doesn't

he?

If "no" is expected:
[NEGATIVE SENTENCE + DO/DOES + SUBJECT]
You don't smoke,

do

you?

Mary doesn't drive,

does

she?

vs. PRESENT PROGRESSIVE


USE:
The Present Simple is used to talk about general time, states, and repeated actions. The
Present Progressive is used to talk about more temporary situations and actions which are
going on around the present moment.
EXAMPLES:
Present Simple: "Pat plays tennis every Friday."
Present Progressive: "She is playing tennis now."
Present Simple: "Hans speaks very good English."
Present Progressive: "Now he is speaking English to that tourist."

PRESENT PERFECT

USE:
To talk about actions or states which began in the past and are still relevant in the present.
The Present Perfect is often used with expressions starting with FOR and SINCE, to talk
about actions or states which began in the past and are true up until the present time. It is
also used with the adverbs JUST, ALREADY, and YET to talk about actions or events
which took place at an indefinite time in the past. The Present Perfect is also used to talk
about recent actions or events ("news").

EXAMPLES:

"Hi, Karla! I haven't seen you lately. Where have you been?"
"I've been really busy. I've been playing with a band called "Wild Thing." Have you heard of
us?"
"No, I haven't."
"Well, come and see us on Saturday night!"

FORM:
AFFIRMATIVE

Simple:
[SUBJECT + HAVE/HAS + (JUST/ALREADY) + PAST PARTICIPLE [V3] +
(FOR/SINCE...)]

Progressive:
[SUBJECT + HAVE/HAS + (JUST/ALREADY) + BEEN + VERB + ing + (FOR/SINCE...)]

EXAMPLES:
"They've lived here for two years."
"She's been here since 4 p.m."
"I've already swept the floor."
"They've been working all night."
NEGATIVE
Simple:
[SUBJECT + HAVE/HAS NOT / HAVEN'T/HASN'T + PAST PARTICIPLE [V3]...]
Progressive:
[SUBJECT + HAVE/HAS NOT / HAVEN'T/HASN'T + BEEN + VERB + ing...]

EXAMPLES:
"We haven't met her yet."

"He hasn't made a sound."


"You haven't been doing your homework."

YES/NO QUESTIONS

Simple:
[HAVE/HAS + SUBJECT + PAST PARTICIPLE [V3]...?]

Progressive:
[HAVE/HAS + SUBJECT + BEEN + VERB + ing...?]

EXAMPLES:
"Have you finished your work yet?"
"Has Peter come home yet?"
"Have they been living here long?"

WH-QUESTIONS
WH-QUESTIONS ABOUT THE SUBJECT

Simple:
[WH-WORD + HAVE/HAS + PAST PARTICIPLE[V3]...]

Progressive:
[WH-WORD + HAVE/HAS + BEEN + VERB + ing]

EXAMPLES:
"Who's eaten all the candy?"
"Who's been sleeping in my bed?"
WH-QUESTIONS ABOUT THE REST OF THE SENTENCE
Simple:

[WH-WORD + HAVE/HAS + SUBJECT + PAST PARTICIPLE[V3]...]

Progressive:
[WH-WORD + HAVE/HAS + SUBJECT + BEEN + VERB + ing]

EXAMPLES:
"Where has he put my coat?"
"Why have you done that?"
"What have you been doing?"

TIME EXPRESSIONS
FOR or SINCE are used at the beginning of a time expression. To say how long the action
or state lasted, we use FOR:"...for ten minutes." "...for twenty years," "...for two centuries,"
"...for a very long time," etc.

To say when the action or state began, we use SINCE: "...since 2 o'clock," "...since last
Monday," "...since 1975," "...since the end of the war," etc.

HOW LONG is used to start a question about duration.

EXAMPLES:
"How long have you had that sweater?"
"About six months."

"How long have you been living here?"


"For two years." EVER is used before the verb, to ask if something has happened, but not
when.

EXAMPLE:
"Have you ever eaten octopus?"
"Yes, I have."

JUST, ALREADY, and YET are used to talk about actions or events which took place at an
indefinite time in the past, or recent actions or events ("news"). JUST (= a short time ago)
and ALREADY (= before now) usually go immediately before the Past Participle [V3], and
YET (before/until now) is often used at the end of a negative sentence or question.

EXAMPLES:
"I have already seen that movie. Let's stay home!"
"But I haven't seen it yet!"

THE PASSIVE
USE:
To talk about actions or events in which the agent, or the "doer" of the action, is obvious,
unknown or unimportant, or to emphasize the action, the results of the action, or the
receiver of the action. The Passive is also used to stress a process or event.
FORM:
["BE" + Past Participle [V3]]
NOTE: The verb "BE" varies according to the tense of the sentence.
EXAMPLES:
"The house was built in 1925."
"English is spoken here."
"The new hospital will be opened by the Queen."
"Private cars shouldn't be allowed to enter the city center."
"John was asked several questions by the police."
"He was hit by a car."
"The chocolate was melted over a low flame."
NOTE: Although we generally use the Passive without the agent, it can be included by
using the preposition BY.
EXAMPLES:
"The money was stolen by Bugsy this morning."
"'Romeo and Juliet' was written by Shakespeare."
INDIRECT FORM
Some verbs, such as GIVE, ASK, TELL, OFFER, PROMISE, SEND, SHOW, TEACH, and
PAY, can have two objects: one DIRECT and one INDIRECT. Either the direct object or the
indirect object can become the subject in a passive sentence:

"My grandmother gave me a watch."


"The watch was given to me for my birthday."
(direct object)
"I was given the watch for my birthday."
(indirect object)
NOTE: We usually use the indirect object as the subject of a passive sentence in the
indirect form.
BE PAST: QUESTIONS
YES/NO QUESTIONS
USE:
To ask questions that need an answer of "yes" or "no".
FORM:
The subject and the verb change places.
Affirmative: They were at home.
Yes/No Question: Were they at home?
Negative: He wasn't at school.
Yes/No Question: Wasn't he at school?(Always use contractions.)

Answers:

Yes, I was.
No, I wasn't.

PRESENT SIMPLE vs. PRESENT PROGRESSIVE


USE:
The Present Simple is used to talk about general time, states, and repeated actions.
The Present Progressive is used to talk about more temporary situations and actions
which are going on at the present moment.
EXAMPLES:
Present Simple: "She plays tennis every Friday."
Present Progressive: "Pat is playing tennis now."
Present Simple: "Hans speaks very good English."
Present Progressive: "Now he's speaking English to that customer."

NOTE: Some verbs are used only in simple tenses: Want, Like, Love, Hate, Need, Think,
Know, Understand, Believe, Mean.

PAST PROGRESSIVE - vs. PAST SIMPLE


USE:
We use the Past Simple to talk about a completed action in the past. We use the Past
Progressive to talk about an action that continued over a period of time in the past.
We can also use the Past Simple and the Past Progressive together in the same sentence,
to show that one short action or event happened during a longer action or event. If we
mention the shorter action first, we usually join the two parts of the sentence together with
WHILE.
EXAMPLES:
"Tom arrived while we were talking about him."
"She came in while I was doing my homework."
If we mention the longer action first, we usually join the two parts of the sentence together
with WHEN.
EXAMPLES:
"We were talking about Tom when he arrived."
"I was doing my homework when she came in."

Modal Verbs of Obligation

Present

Positive

Negative

have to /
don't have to

strong obligation (possibly from


outside)

Children have to go to
school.

no obligation

I don't have to work on


Sundays.

You don't have to eat


anything you don't like.

(sometimes 'have got to')

must /
mustn't

strong obligation (possibly


based on the speaker's
opinion)

should /
shouldn't

I must study today.

mild obligation or advice

negative obligation

You should save some


money.

You mustn't smoke


here.

mild negative obligation or


advice

You shouldn't smoke so


much.