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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Learn ALL TENSES Easily in 30 Minutes - Present, Past, Future | Simple, Continuous, Perfect

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Hello, and welcome.

In this lesson, Im going to teach you all of the tenses in the English language.

For each tense, Ill show you the form, its different uses, and Ill share with

you example sentences to help you fully understand it.

So, if youre ready, lets begin.

Before we get into the lesson, heres a chart showing all the tenses.

There are three timespresent, past, and future.

And four aspectssimple, continuous, perfect, and perfect continuous.

The times and the aspects combine to make all of the twelve tenses in English.

The present time and the simple aspect make the present simple tense.

Then, we have the present continuous, present perfect, and the present perfect continuous

tenses.

In the same way, we can make tenses with the past and future times as well.

Were going to discuss all of these in this lesson.

So, lets begin with the first tensethe present simple.

We make the present simple tense with a subject (like I/You/We/They/He/She/It) and a verb

in the present (or the V1) form.

For example: “I drink coffee every morning.”

Cathy works as a teacher.”

Notice that in sentence number two, we haveworkswith ans”.

In the present tense, if the subject is I, You, We or They, we use a verb without -s.

Thats whyI drink”.

If the subject is He, She, or It, we add -s to the verb.

Cathyis a female name, its like sayingshe”, so weve said, “Cathy

works”.

Now, the first sentence here talks about a habit or a routine, something that I do regularly.

The second sentence is a fact – “Cathy works as a teacheris a fact about her

life.

These are the two main uses of the present simple tense.

Here are a few more examples of habits and routines: “Shawn goes to the beach on Sundays.”

Children often play video games after school.”

And here are some more facts: “You sing very well.”

(its said as a fact about someones ability) “Water boils at 100° C.” Notice that

this last sentence is a fact about the world, so facts can be about people, or they can

be about things in the world.

So, that is the present simple tense.

The next tense is the present continuous.

We make the present continuous tense with a subject + am/is/are + a verb in the continuous

or -ing form.

We say, “I am”, “He/She/It + is”, andYou/We/They + are”.

For example: “Im drinking coffee right now.”

This sentence shows the first use of the present continuous: to talk about actions happening

now, at the time of speaking.

This is not a general statement; its not about my coffee-drinking habit.

Its about whats happening at this moment: Im drinking coffee now.

Here are two more examples: “We are having breakfast.”

It is raining outside.”

These sentences also express what is happening now.

This is the first use of the present continuous; the second use is to talk about temporary

activities.

Like: “Arun is learning to play the guitar.”

It means Arun is taking guitar lessons, maybe twice a week.

So, he is in the process of learning to play the instrument.

A couple more examples: “I am watching a really interesting TV series at the moment.”

My sister is staying with us for a couple of weeks.”

The third use of the present continuous is to describe changes that are taking place

or happening now.

English lessons on YouTube are becoming very popular.”

It means that the popularity of English lessons on YouTube is increasing.

Here are some more examples: “The price of crude oil is falling rapidly.”

Scientists say that the Earth is getting warmer.”

So, remember that the present continuous tense is used to talk about actions happening now,

temporary activities, and changes that are taking place.

Alright, so weve discussed the present simple and present continuous tenses.

Lets now talk about the past simple and past continuous.

Past simple first.

We make the past simple tense with a subject and a verb in the past (or the V2) form.

This tense is used to talk about completed actions in the past.

For example: “I played soccer with my friends last Saturday.”

Karen gave us a present for our wedding anniversary.”

The verb in the first sentence isplay”.

We make the past form by adding -ed to it.

We do this for most verbs.

But some verbs have special past forms; you see that in sentence number two: “gave

this is the past tense of the verbgive”.

We saygive”, “gave”, “given”.

Givenis the past participle or V3 form.

These types of verbs are called irregular verbs; there are no rules for making past

forms with them, so you have to memorize the correct forms.

You see some examples on the screen, but of course, there are many more in English.

Alright, here are some more past simple tense sentences: “We received the package this

morning.”

My grandfather built this house in 1968.”

Antonio lived in Malaysia for five years.”

OK, lets now move on and talk about the past continuous tense.

Heres a sentence first: “I was having dinner with my family when the doorbell rang.”

Were going to put this sentence on a timeline.

That side is the past, in the middle is now, and over on that side is the future.

Our sentence says, “I was having dinner with my family” – this shows an unfinished,

ongoing action in the past.

So, I was in the middle of having dinner, and something happened: the doorbell rang.

So, I had to put down my spoon and fork, get up from my table, and go and see who it was.

So, the past continuous tense talks about an unfinished, ongoing action in the past.

And, normally, we also mention another finished action that interrupted it.

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We saywasfor the subjects I/He/She/It, andwerefor You/We/They.

If we mention a finished action that interrupted the continuous action, it is in the past simple

formsubject + past tense verb (likethe doorbell rang”).

Here are a few more sentences: “It was raining when Priya left for work.”

(So, she had to take an umbrella with her) “The power went out while the children were

studying.”

(Here, we mention the continuous action secondthe children were studying, and the single,

finished action firstthe power went out) “While we were waiting at the bus stop,

we saw a car accident.”

(Thankfully, nobody got hurt.)

OK, thats it for the past continuous tense.

But, before we move on to the next tense, lets do a quick comparison of the four

tenses weve looked at so far.

I drink coffee every morning.”

Is in the present simple tense.

As you can see on the timeline now, this sentence expresses a habit or a routine, something

that happens regularly.

I am drinking coffee right now.”

Is in the present continuous tense.

It means that I am doing this action (drinking coffee) at this moment.

I drank coffee yesterday.”

Expresses a finished action in the pastthat coffee is gone.

So, this sentence is in the past simple tense.

And in the last sentence: “I was drinking coffee this morning when I got a phone call

from my boss.”

We see two actions.

One is an unfinished, continuous action – “I was drinking coffee” (thats a past continuous

form) and in the middle of that, something happened – “I got a phone call from my

boss.”

That is a past simple tense form.

So, my boss said, “We need you at the office.

Its important.

Get here right now.”

And I had to throw out my coffee and rush to work.

Anyway, lets move on.

Were now going to look at the present perfect tense.

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or V3 form.

We sayhaveif the subject is I/You/We/They andhasif the subject is He/She/It.

For example: “I have taught English to many students.”

Ashley has visited France four times.”

We have seen two movies this week.”

The present perfect tense has two main uses.

These sentences show the first use: to talk about experiences.

Sentence number one is about my experience in my teaching career.

Of course, Im still a teacher, so my career is not finished; its continuing.

We CAN sayI have taught English to many students in my career.”

But thats not necessary; its understood.

Similarly, “Ashley has visited France four times in her life”, so the time period here

is Ashleys life (which is still ongoing).

In the third sentence, the time period is this week.

Maybe today is Wednesday, so this week is not finished; we might see another two movies

before the end of the week.

So, in these sentences, the time period is continuing or ongoingmy career, Ashleys

life, and this week.

But, if the time period is finished, we just use the past simple tense: “I taught many

students when I was a teacher.”

In this sentence, my career is over.

It means Im not a teacher now; I was for some time.

During that time, I taught many students, but then I quit that line of work and became

a pop singer.

Ashley visited France in 2015.”

(2015 is in the past) “We saw two movies last week.”

(again, last week is gone) So, this is the first use of the present perfectto discuss

experiences in continuing, ongoing time periods.

The second use is to talk about recent actions or events.

For example: “I have finished my homework.”

You can imagine a kid saying this to her mom.

Well, when did she finish her homework?

Maybe 5 or 10 minutes ago.

But, thats not importantthe important thing is the completion of the homework.

You see this on the timeline nowthe girl finished her homework just a few minutes ago,

but shes not saying the specific time because its not necessary (thats why theres

a question markno mention of the time).

Heres another sentence: “Arthur has lost his glasses.”

We dont say when because the important thing is that now, Arthur doesnt have his

glasses.

One more example: “The police have arrested a young man in connection with the robbery.”

So, there was a robbery in the neighborhood recently, and now the police have a young

suspect in custody.

The exact time of the arrest is not important.

In all of these sentences, if you want to mention the specific time, you should use

the past simple tense.

I finished my homework at 6.30 p.m.” “Arthur lost his glasses at the party.”

(the party was maybe last weekend, so this is all old news) “The police arrested a

young man last night in connection with the robbery.”

So, remember that there are two main uses of the present perfect tense: to talk about

experiences and to talk about recent events.

Alright, now lets move on to the next tense: the present perfect continuous.

We make the present perfect continuous tense with a subject + have/has been + a verb in

continuous (or -ing) form.

If the subject is I/You/We/They, we usehave”.

If the subject is He/She/It, we usehas”.

For example: “I have been waiting to see the doctor for two hours.”

You can imagine this lady saying that.

So, it means that she came to the clinic maybe at 5 oclock, and now its seven oclock.

She started waiting at five; two hours have now passed, and she is still waiting.

So, the present perfect continuous tense talks about an action that started in the past and

is still continuing.

In this sentence, we can also say, “I have been waiting since five p.m.”

The difference betweenforandsinceis thatfortalks about the amount of

time like two hours.

Sinceis used to mention the starting point of the action like five p.m.

Here is another sentence: “He has been playing tennis since he was a child.”

He started when he was little (maybe when he was five years old), and he still plays

tennis.

Lets say hes 25 now, soHes been playing tennis for 20 years.”

A few more examples: “She has been learning English for eight months / since last October.”

Weve been living in this town for a very long time / since 1980.”

It has been raining all morning / since 4 a.m.”

Now here, the duration isall morning”.

In fixed phrases likeall morning, all day, all weeketc. we dont usefor”.

But you can say, “since 4 a.m.” if you want to mention the starting point.

I want to alert you to a common mistake here.

If you say, “I am waiting to see the doctor for two hoursorHe is playing tennis

since he was a child”, those are not correct.

You can say, “Right now, I am waiting to see the doctororHe is playing tennis”.

But when you mention the amount of time (like two hours), or when you mention the starting

point (like since he was a child), you must use the present perfect continuous tense.

This is true with the other sentences here as well.

So, keep this point in mind.

Alright, so this is the present perfect continuous tense.

Lets move on to the next tensethe past perfect.

Before we talk about this tense, take a look at this past simple tense sentence.

When we got to the theater, the movie started.”

There are two past actions in this sentence: “got to the theaterwhich meanswe

arrived there”, andthe movie started”.

You can see in the timeline that we got to the theater first, and then, right after that,

the movie started playing.

But what about this sentence: “When we got to the theater, the movie had started.”

That means the movie started before we got to the theater.

So, the movie started first, then we arrived.

This is the past perfect tense: we make it with a subject + had + a verb in past participle

(or V3) form.

When we have two actions in the past, we use the past perfect to clearly show which action

happened first.

Heres another example: “I was sick because I had eaten too much the previous night.”

Two actions: “I was sickandI had eaten too much the previous night”.

Which happened first?

I had eaten too much food”, then the next day, “I was sick”.

Next example: “The girl looked very familiar.

I had seen her somewhere before.”

First, “I had seen her somewhere before” (maybe a few years before), soshe looked

very familiar”.

Joel rushed to his bosss office, but she had gone home already.”

She (meaning the boss) had gone home already”, so when Joel rushed to see her, she wasnt

there.

As you can see, the past perfect tense is really easy; just remember that when we have

two past actions, we use the past perfect if we want to clearly indicate which happened

first; we do this to avoid confusion in the order of events.

Alright, lets turn to our next tense now: this is the past perfect continuous.

This tense is just like the past perfect simple, except the first past action is continuous.

For example: “I felt really tired because I had been driving all day.”

So, you know that I felt tired at some point in the past.

And that was because before that, “I had been drivingthat entire day.

So, the earlier past action was a continuous one.

We make this tense with a subject + had been + a verb in continuous (or -ing) form.

Heres another sentence: “She had been waiting for two hours when the doctor finally

arrived.”

Remember that lady who was waiting for the doctor?

Well, the doctor came, so her wait ended, but before that point, “she had been waiting

for two hours.”

Here, the past perfect continuous form comes first in the sentence, but thats OK.

Some more examples: “The ground was wet because it had been raining.”

It had been rainingfirst, and so, the ground was wet.

When he quit his job at the factory, he had been working there for 12 years.”

So, remember that the present perfect continuous tense is used to talk about a continuous action

in the past before another finished action.

Alright, its time now for another review.

Were going to do a quick comparison of the four perfect tenses weve looked at

so far.

I have washed the dishes.”

Is in the present perfect tense.

It focuses on the completion of the action and doesnt mention the exact time.

But you understand that I finished washing the dishes maybe just a few minutes ago.

I have been washing the dishes for half an hour.”

Is in the present perfect continuous tense.

It means that I have not finished washing them yet.

I started half an hour ago, and Im still doing it.

When I left for work, I had washed the dishes.”

Here, “I had washed the dishesis in the past perfect tense.

It means that first I finished washing them, and after that I left for work.

When the phone rang, I had been washing the dishes for half an hour.”

So, the phone rang at some point in the past.

Half an hour before that I started washing the dishes, and I was still doing that when

the phone rang.

So, I stopped, wiped my hands dry, and I went to answer the phone.

Alright, now we move on to talking about the future.

The first tense for us to look at is the future simple.

Now, this tense is a little tricky because there are a few different future simple forms.

The three most important are going to, the present continuous (using an -ing verb), and

will.

Lets talk about where to use these.

We usegoing toto express plans and intentions.

We make this form with a subject + am/is/are and then going to + a verb in its base form.

For example: “We are going to buy a car.”

That means we have a plan to buy a car soon.

I am going to start exercising regularly.”

Rahul is going to take a vacation from work.”

Now, if its more than a plan, if we have made the arrangements, then we use the present

continuous.

This is a tense you know already, and when we use it to talk about the future, it is

stronger thangoing to”.

For example: “I am having lunch with my parents on Saturday.”

So, my parents and I have a plan to do that, but also, we have agreed on the time and place.

Its fixed.

Heres another sentence: “We are flying to Mumbai the day after tomorrow.”

So, weve purchased the flight tickets, and our trip is confirmed.

Josh is giving a presentation to the board of directors on the 10th.”

On the 10thmeanson the 10th of this month”.

This is also a fixed arrangement.

Now, you might be asking, “So whats the difference really between going to and the

present continuous?”

Well, here is a situation to help you understand: “Im going to see the dentist sometime

next week.”

Im laughing because of the picture.

OK, so do I have a plan to see the dentist?

Yes.

But, do I know on exactly what day?

No.

I havent booked an appointment yet.

But if I say: “Im seeing the dentist tomorrow afternoon.”

That is confirmed; I have an appointment.

One more example: “Were going to get married this year.”

Is the date fixed?

No.

Its a plan.

Were getting married on April 21st.”

Is the date fixed?

Yes.

This is an arrangement.

So, thats the difference betweengoing toand the present continuous.

But, what aboutwill”?

Lets talk about that now.

Willis used to express three things: instant decisions, that is, decisions that

we make suddenly at the time of speaking; offers; and promises.

We make this form with a subject + will + a verb in its base form.

At a restaurant, a waiter asks you: “May I take your order?”

And you say: “Yes, I will have the burger and fries combo, please.”

This is an instant decision.

You didnt plan two weeks ago to eat this food at this restaurant on this day.

You just made the decision now.

Heres another example.

Someone says: “The phones ringing.”

And you say: “I will get it.”

You just decided to answer the phone.

The next two examples showwillused to make offers: “These files are really

heavy.”

I will help you with them.”

So, Im offering to help this person carry the files.

That person can say: “OK, thank youorNo, thanks.

I can do it myself.”

Similarly, “Its hard to get a cab at this hour.

I will give you a ride home.”

You might say that to a colleague of yours when leaving work late.

Your colleague might accept or politely decline your offer.

And here iswillused to make promises: “Can you lend me $200?

Ill pay you back next week.”

Thank you for your email.

We will respond within two business days.”

Alright, so far, weve talked about expressing plans and intentions withgoing to”,

fixed arrangements with the present continuous, and the three uses ofwill”: instant

decisions, offers and promises.

But, theres one more future function that you need to know about, and that is making

predictions.

To make predictions or guesses about the future, we can use bothwillandgoing to”.

These two forms are interchangeable for making predictions in many situations (meaning you

can choose whichever one you want).

But, there is a slight difference: we normally usewillto make predictions based on

our knowledge or our own personal experience: “I think Spain will win the 2018 World Cup.”

Theyve been playing well recently, so based on that knowledge, I think theyll win the

Cup.

You should watch Interstellar.

Im sure you will love it.

I know that you like science fiction films, so Im confident you will like this one.

We usegoing towhen we make predictions based on something in the present (something

we can see now), so were sure: “Look at the sky.

Its going to rain soon.”

We can see a lot of black clouds, so its definitely going to rain in a few minutes.

Moms going to be really happy when she sees my grades.”

So, this kid has done well on his exams; he has his report card in hand, and he knows

for sure that his mother is going to be happy when she sees it.

Alright, so remember this difference in making predictions withwillandgoing to”.

OK, weve covered a lot of information about the future simple tense, so lets do a quick

recap of it.

We usegoing toto talk about plans and intentions: “We are going to buy a car.”

We use the present continuous to talk about fixed arrangements: “Im having lunch

with my parents on Saturday.”

We usewillfor three main purposes: to express instant decisions: “Ill have

the burger and fries combo, please.”

To make offers: “Ill help you with those files.”

And to make promises: “Can you lend me $200?

Ill pay you back next week.”

We use bothwillandgoing toto make predictions.

If a prediction is based on our opinion, knowledge or experience, we usewill”: “I think

Spain will win the 2018 World Cup.”

If a prediction is based on something we see right now, then we usegoing to”: “Look

at the sky.

Its going to rain soon.”

Alright, lets now move on and talk about the next tense: the future continuous.

We make the future continuous tense with a subject + will be + a verb in continuous (or

-ing form).

For example: “At 11 a.m. tomorrow, I will be driving to Portland.”

So, tomorrow, at nine in the morning, Im going to start driving to Portland; it will

take me many hours to get there.

But at 11 oclock, I will be doing this activity: driving.

The future continuous tense expresses an action that will be ongoing (that will be in progress)

at some time in the future.

Heres another example.

Some of your friends are planning to go and see a movie on Saturday.

One of them asks you: “(Hey) Do you want to come with us to the movies on Saturday?”

And you say: “I cant.

I will be working until late.”

Until latemeansuntil late at night.”

So, you have an afternoon shift on Saturday, and that evening, you will still be in your

office, doing your work, so you cant go to the movies.

This is the main use of the future continuous tense, but sometimes, we use this tense to

talk about a fixed or a routine event in the future.

You know Im traveling to Portland tomorrow: “I will be staying at the Hilton hotel in

Portland.”

This is a fixed arrangement.

It has the same meaning as saying: Im staying orIm going to stay at the Hilton hotel

in Portland.”

All of these forms are correct in this case.

One more example at the workplace: One colleague says to another: “Im going to the cafeteria.

Do you want me to bring you a coffee?”

The reply: “Thanks, but dont bother.

I will be going there in a little while myself.”

Its a routine thing I do at this time every day.

Its also correct if you say, “Im going there in a little while myself”.

So, thats the future continuous.

We now turn to the next two tenses; were going to look at these together: the future

perfect and the future perfect continuous.

To understand the future perfect, lets take a situation: this is Aaron.

He wants to save up some money, so he is going to save $100 a month from now on.

This is February now, soBy August (which is six months from now), Aaron will have saved

$600.”

This sentence shows that the action (of saving 600 bucks) will be complete by that time.

This is the future perfect tense.

It takes a point in the future (like August), and it looks back; it talks about the completion

of an action by that time.

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Now, in this sentence, the focus is on the money.

If, instead, we want to focus on the amount of time, then we can say: “By August, Aaron

will have been saving money for six months.”

That is, he will have finished six months of saving and he will continue saving money.

This is the future perfect continuous tense.

We use it talk about an ongoing action (an action that will be in progress) in the future

and to also mention the duration or length of that action at a particular time.

We make this tense with a subject + will have been + a verb in continuous or -ing form.

Heres one more example: My wife and I are going to paint our living room tomorrow.

Thats the plan.

Were going to start at 7 a.m.

We expect that itll take us about 10 hours.

So, “By 5 p.m., we will have painted the living room.”

I can also say: “By 5 p.m., we will have finished.”

I can make a future perfect continuous sentence like this: “By 5 p.m., we will have been

painting the living room for ten hours.”

The future perfect simple and the future perfect continuous tenses are not that common.

Theyre found very little in speech and a little more in writing.

Understanding these two tenses can be helpful, but dont worry too much if youre not

sure how to use them correctly.

Theyre not extremely important, and you will get better at using them with time and

practice.

Alright, that brings us to the end of this lesson.

I hope you enjoyed it and learned from it.

As always, happy learning, and I will see you in another lesson soon.

The Description of Learn ALL TENSES Easily in 30 Minutes - Present, Past, Future | Simple, Continuous, Perfect