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Simple Present / Present Continuous

Simple Present


[VERB] + s/es in third person


· You speak English.

· Do you speak English?

· You do not speak English.

Complete List of Simple Present Forms

USE 1 Repeated Actions

Use the Simple Present to express the idea that an action is repeated or usual. The action can be a habit, a hobby, a daily event, a scheduled event or something that often happens. It can also be something a person often forgets or usually does not do.


· 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?

· She always forgets her purse.

· He never forgets his wallet.

· Every twelve months, the Earth circles the Sun.

· Does the Sun circle the Earth?

USE 2 Facts or Generalizations

The Simple Present can also indicate the speaker believes that a fact was true before, is true now, and will be true in the future. It is not important if the speaker is correct about the fact. It is also used to make generalizations about people or things.


· Cats like milk.

· Birds do not like milk.

· Do pigs like milk?

· California is in America.

· California is not in the United Kingdom.

· Windows are made of glass.

· Windows are not made of wood.

· New York is a small city. It is not important that this fact is untrue.

USE 3 Scheduled Events in the Near Future

Speakers occasionally use Simple Present to talk about scheduled events in the near future. This is most commonly done when talking about public transportation, but it can be used with other scheduled events as well.


· The train leaves tonight at 6 PM.

· The bus does not arrive at 11 AM, it arrives at 11 PM.

· When do we board the plane?

· The party starts at 8 o'clock.

· When does class begin tomorrow?

USE 4 Now (Non-Continuous Verbs)

Speakers sometimes use the Simple Present to express the idea that an action is happening or is not happening now. This can only be done with Non-Continuous Verbs and certain Mixed Verbs.


· I am here now.

· She is not here now.

· He needs help right now.

· He does not need help now.

· He has his passport in his hand.

· Do you have your passport with you?


The examples below show the placement for grammar adverbs such as: always, only, never, ever, still, just, etc.


· You only speak English.

· Do you only speak English?



· Once a week, Tom cleans the car. Active

· Once a week, the car is cleaned by Tom. Passive

Verb Tense Exercise 2

Simple Present / Present Continuous

Using the words in parentheses, complete the text below with the appropriate tenses, then click the "Check" button to check your answers.

Начало формы

A Trekking Journal

November 12, 1997

Today (be) the second day of my trek around Mount Annapurna. I am exhausted and my legs (shake); I just hope I am able to complete the trek. My feet (kill, really) me and my toes (bleed), but I (want, still) to continue.

Nepal is a fascinating country, but I have a great deal to learn. Everything (be) so different, and I (try) to adapt to the new way of life here. I (learn) a little bit of the language to make communication easier; unfortunately, I (learn, not) foreign languages quickly. Although I (understand, not) much yet, I believe that I (improve, gradually).

I (travel, currently) with Liam, a student from Leeds University in England. He (be) a nice guy, but impatient. He (walk, always) ahead of me and (complain) that I am too slow. I (do) my best to keep up with him, but he is younger and stronger than I am. Maybe, I am just feeling sorry for myself because I am getting old.

Right now, Liam (sit) with the owner of the inn. They (discuss) the differences between life in England and life in Nepal. I (know, not) the real name of the owner, but everybody (call, just) him Tam. Tam (speak) English very well and he (try) to teach Liam some words in Nepali. Every time Tam (say) a new word, Liam (try) to repeat it. Unfortunately, Liam (seem, also) to have difficulty learning foreign languages. I just hope we don't get lost and have to ask for directions.


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