Understanding the Present Simple Tense

November 6, 2023
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Hello! Today, let’s talk about when and how to use the present simple tense. It’s really useful and not too hard to learn!

When to Use It:

  1. Always True Things:
    For stuff that’s generally always the same.
  • “We live in Paris.”
  • “She works at a library.”
  1. Habits and Routines:
    For what you do regularly.
  • “I wake up at 7:00.”
  • “He calls his mom every Sunday.”
  1. General Facts:
    Stuff that’s true for everyone.
  • “The Earth circles the Sun.”
  • “Cats sleep a lot.”
  1. How Things Are:
    When you’re talking about states, not actions.
  • “You look tired.”
  • “Why is this one more expensive?”
  1. Sensing and Thinking:
    For feelings, thoughts, or senses.
  • “This cake tastes weird.”
  • “I think you’re right.”
  1. Future Plans (on a schedule):
    For things that are planned and scheduled.
  • “The train leaves at 8:00.”
  • “School starts in September.”
  1. How Often Something Happens:
    With words that tell us how often.
  • “She always eats breakfast.”
  • “I rarely watch TV.”
  1. If This, Then That (Zero Conditionals):
    For things that are always true.
  • “If it rains, the grass gets wet.”
  • “When you heat ice, it melts.”
  1. Telling Stories:
    To make stories sound exciting.
  • “So, I open the door and everything’s gone!”
  • “Then, I meet someone who looks like a famous actor.”
  1. Describing Movie Plots and More:
    For explaining stories or events.
  • “In the story, they meet and fall in love.”
  • “The news says, ‘Astronauts land on Mars.'”

Making Sentences in the Present Simple:

Positive Statements:

  • “I” and “we” just use the base form of the verb: “I play,” “We eat.”
  • For “he,” “she,” or “it,” add “s” or “es”: “He plays,” “She eats.”

Negative Statements:

  • Just add “do not” or “does not” (don’t/doesn’t): “I don’t play,” “She doesn’t eat.”

Asking Yes/No Questions:

  • Use “do” or “does” at the start: “Do you play?” “Does he eat?”

Asking Information Questions:

  • Start with a question word, then “do” or “does”: “Where do you play?” “What does he eat?”

Common Mistakes to Avoid:

  • Don’t add “s” after “does” or “doesn’t.”
  • Remember, some verbs don’t get used in continuous forms, like “know” or “love.”
  • Be careful with spelling, especially when a verb ends in “y”: “try” becomes “tries.”

Wrong: “He don’t like running.”
Right: “He doesn’t like running.”

That’s it! Keep practicing, and you’ll get the hang of the present simple tense. It’s all about repetition and use, so don’t be afraid to try making your own sentences. Good luck!


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