PAST TENSES OFTEN CONFUSED Both tenses are used to talk about events that started in the past, have a result now and may continue in the future. SIMPLE PAST PRESENT PERFECT It talks about: - Past events at a specific point of time. E.g. When I was in London I took many photos. - Any finished action in the past. E.g. I drove to the south. - Consecutive past actions. E.g. When I arrived home, the telephone rang. It talks about: - Past events at an indefinite point of time, which refer to experiences in life. PRESENT PERFECT CONTINUOUS It talks about: It talks about: - Actions that happened before another action in the past (the past of the past). E.g. I’ve taken many photos. (It doesn’t matter when, the fact of having taken photos as an experience is emphasised here). - An unfinished action in the past, expressing how many times. PAST PERFECT - An unfinished action at the moment of speaking. E.g. I’ve driven to the south twice. E.g. I’ve been driving for hours. (I’m still driving). - To ask or say HOW LONG only with Non- action verbs. (Read below) - To ask or say HOW LONG only with Action verbs(dynamic verbs). E.g. I’ve preferred horror movies since I was a teenager. E.g. I’ve been saving money for a long time. - Both are used for recent finished actions. E.g. A: Would you like a cup of coffee? B: No thanks, I’ve just had breakfast // A: You look so tired! B: I’ve been cleaning the whole day. - Both are used for finished continuing actions. E.g. I’ve practiced yoga all my life I’ve been practicing yoga for years E.g. I printed the pictures I had chosen. (First I chose the pictures and then I printed them). E.g. When I arrived home, my husband had already washed the dishes. (First my husband washed the dishes and then I arrived). Note: With “WORK”, “LIVE”, “STUDY”, “TEACH” and “PALY” you can use both tenses (Present Perfect or Present Perfect Continuous. E.g. I’ve lived in Canada I’ve been living in Canada since 2010. for two years. NON-ACTION VERBS (STATE/STATIVE VERBS): These verbs are not used in the CONTINUOUS/PROGRESSIVE tenses. They are usually about liking or disliking something, or about a mental state, not about an action. Agree – appear – believe – belong – concern – consist – contain – depend – deserve – disagree – dislike – doubt – fit – hate – hear – imagine – impress – include – involve – know – like – love – matter – mean – measure – mind – need – owe – own – prefer – promise – realize – recognize – remember – seem – sound – suppose – surprise – understand – want – weigh - wish. Some verbs can be NON-ACTION and ACTION, but the meaning is different: VERB MEANING AS NON-ACTION VERB MEANING AS ACTION VERB Be State. E.g. He is cynical. (as part of his personality) Have To own. E.g. They have a cottage near a river. See 1. To see with your eyes. E.g. I see him now; he’s wearing a Stetson hat. 2. To understand. E.g. I see what you mean. Behaving or acting. E.g. He is being cynical. (only now, not usually) Part of an expression (to have a party/a break/a picnic/ a bath/lunch/good time). E.g. We were having a party when my parents arrived. 1. To meet: E.g. They’re seeing their son next month. 2. To have a relationship with: E.g. Peter has been seeing Kate since 2009. (Kate has been Peter’s girlfriend since 2009) Taste (also: smell, look) SENSE: Something has a certain taste/smell/look. E.g. 1.This dish tastes/smells/looks good. The action of tasting/smelling/looking. E.g. 1. Wait! At this very moment he’s tasting your dish, I think he’ll like it. 2. I can’t stop smelling flowers, I do it all the time. 3. They were looking at me furiously. Feel Think 1. SENSE: Something has a certain feeling. E.g. It feels like wool. 2. To think. E.g. We all felt he was absolutely wrong. To have an opinion. E.g. I thought he had left earlier. The action of feeling. E.g. I was feeling guilty. To consider, to have in your head. E.g. I’ve been thinking very deeply about your problem, but I haven’t got a solution yet. Exercise: Past Simple, Present Perfect, Present Perfect Continuous or Past Perfect? Put the verb in ( ) into the most suitable form: 1. Yesterday afternoon Sharon ____________________ (go) to the train station to meet Paul. When she ___________________ (get) there, Paul was waiting for her. His train ____________________ (arrive) earlier. 2. I’m out of breath, I ____________________ (practice) all day. The competition is next week and I ____________________ (already/register). 3. A: I can’t find my keys, I think somebody ____________________ (take) them. B: __________ you __________ (look for) them in your bag? 4. Hi, Samantha. I ____________________ (not/see) for ages. How are you? 5. We ____________________ (arrive) at work this morning and ____________________ (find) that somebody ____________________ (break) into the office during the night. So we ___________________ (call ) the police. 6. You should put some boots on. It ____________________ (rain) for days and it’s very muddy outside. 7. We are worried, we ____________________ (not/know) anything about them, we ____________________ (expect) them to arrive since yesterday. 8. Look at you!! What on earth __________ you __________ (do) ?! 9. They ____________________ (finish) their task when the teacher ____________________ (ask) for it. KEY: 1. Yesterday afternoon Sharon ___went_________________ (go) to the train station to meet Paul. When she ___got________________ (get) there, Paul was waiting for her. His train __had arrived__________________ (arrive) earlier. 2. I’m out of breath, I _’ve been practicing___________________ (practice) all day. The competition is next week and I _’ve already registered___________________ (already/register). 3. A: I can’t find my keys, I think somebody _has taken___________________ (take) them. B: _Have_________ you __looked for________ (look for) them in your bag? 4. Hi, Samantha. I _haven’t seen you ___________________ (not/see) for ages. How are you? 5. We _arrived ___________________ (arrive) at work this morning and __found__________________ (find) that somebody __had broken__________________ (break) into the office during the night. So we _called__________________ (call ) the police. 6. You should put some boots on. It _’s been raining ___________________ (rain) for days and it’s very muddy outside. 7. We are worried, we _haven’t known ___________________ (not/know) anything about them, we _’ve been expecting___________________ (expect) them to arrive since yesterday. 8. Look at you!! What on earth _have_________ you _been doing_________ (do)?! 9. They _had finished___________________ (finish) their task when the teacher ___asked_________________ (ask) for it.