Present and Past

Como ya sabéis, este curso hemos ido realizando un Curso Online gratuito a través de Facebook, en el que hemos estudiado inglés a nivel B1 para ayudaros a preparar el examen de la EOI o el PET de Cambridge, pues sois muchos los que habéis participado y nos habéis consultado dudas.

Aquí vamos a repasar los tiempos verbales con las plantillas de resumen, tanto del presente como del pasado, pero si vais al evento podréis ver todos los contenidos en orden de aparición por el número de unidad.

Os recordamos que el día 24 finaliza este curso y se cerrará el evento, pero todo el que se suscriba al blog (en la columna de la derecha) y le dé ‘Me gusta’ a nuestra página de Facebook, podrá obtener todo el temario y consultarnos cualquier pregunta o enviarnos ejercicios a corregir. Y aún estás a tiempo de participar en nuestro sorteo para obtener un descuento para el próximo curso, en caso que quieras realizarlo o estés interesando participando en el post del Sorteo del Curso Online de B1


The affirmative form is:

Subject +Verb+ s/es in third person+Complements (I speak English)

Third person singular: She speaks English.

The negative form is:

Subject + Auxiliary verb DO or DOES(third person singular) + Not+ Main Verb+ Complements (I do not speak English)

Third person singular: She does not speak English

The question form is:

Auxiliary Verb DO or DOES+Subject+ Main Verb+Complements? (Do you speak English?)

Third person singular: Does she speak English?


The affirmative form is:

Subject+Verb to be(am/is/are)+Verb+ing+Complements (You are studying English)

Third person singular: She is studying English.

The negative form is:

Subject+Verb to be(am/is/are)+Not+Verb+ing+Complements (I am not studying English)

Third person singular: She is not studying English.

The question form is:

Verb to be(am/is/are)+Subject+Verb+ing+Complements (Are you studying English?)

Third person singular: Is she studying English?

Sometimes, speakers use the Present Continuous to indicate that something will or will not happen in the near future.

Ex:I am meeting some friends after work.

Third person singular: She is visiting her parents next weekend.

There are different time expressions that you can use with the Present Continuous with future meaning, such as: tomorrow, tonight, next week, next year.

Remember that if we use this tense with adverbs always, continuously and constantly is for complaining.

Ex: She is always coming to class late.


We also use the Simple Past to list a series of completed actions in the past.

Example: I started work at 8 o´clock,then I had breakfast and my boss talked with me about the new proyect.

“When” clauses

Some clauses begin with the word “when” such as “when I bought my shoes…” or “when I went to Paris…” These clauses are called when-clauses.


  • When I paid her the bill, she said than you.
  • She said thank you when I paid her the bill.

When-clauses are important because they always happen first when both clauses are in the Simple Past. Both of the examples above mean the same thing but he example below has a different meaning, first she said thank you and then, I paid her the bill.

Example: I paid her the bill when she said thank you.

Remember that we use different time expressions such as: yesterday,last night, last week,last month,last year,one week ago, etc


In the Past Simple, a specific time is used to show when an action began or finished. In the Past Continuous, a specific time only interrupts the action.


  • Yesterday at 5 PM, I played football.
    I started playing at 5PM.
  • Yesterday at 5 PM, I was playing football.
    I started earlier; and at 5 PM, I was in the process of playing football.
  • We can also use Past Continuous with two actions in the same sentence, it expresses the idea that both actions were happening at the same time.

    Examples: I was eating while she was studying.

    Some students were doing an speaking while others where doing a writing.


Let´s have a look at the structures.

Affirmative: Subject+Have/Has(3rd person singular)+Verb(in past participle)+Complements

Examples: I have been in London / She has been in London

Negative: Subject+Have/Has+Not +Verb(in past participle)+Complements

Examples: I have not seen Titanic / She has not seen Titanic

Question : Have/Has+Subject+Verbs(past participle)+Complements

Examples: Have you bought milk? / Has she bought milk?

There are other uses for present perfect such as:

-When we talk about a change that has happened over a period of time.Example: Your dog has grown a lot since the last time I saw you.

-Unfinished actions:

We use this tense when we want to talk about unfinished actions that started in the past and continue to the present. Usually we use it to say ‘how long’ an action or state has continued with ‘since’ and ‘for’. Often, we use stative verbs in this situation:

Example: -I have known her since 1985 .We cannot say : I know her since 1985

-We have lived in Ireland for two years.


We often use for and since when talking about time.

for + period: a “period” is a duration of time – five minutes, two weeks, six years. For means “from the beginning of the period to the end of the period”.

since + point: a “point” is a precise moment in time – 9 o’clock, 1st January, Monday. Since means “from a point in the past until now”.


a period
from start to end
a point
from then to now
>===< x===>|
for 20 minutes
for three days
for 6 months
for 4 years
for 2 centuries
for a long time
for ever
since 9am
since Monday
since January
since 1997
since 1500
since I left school
since the beginning of time
all tenses perfect tenses


For can be used with all tenses. Here are a few examples:

  • They do exercise for two hours every day.
  • They are watching TV for three hours today.
  • He has lived in China for a long time.
  • He has been living in London for three months.
  • I worked at that restaurant for five years.

We do not use for with “all day”, “all the time”:

  • I was there all day. (not for all day)


Since is normally used with perfect tenses:

  • He has been here since 7am.
  • He has been waiting since he arrived.
  • I had lived in Britain since my childhood.


Present Perfect Simple with Just,Yet, Still and Already

These words are often used with the present perfect tense although yet, still and already can all be used with other tenses.


Just’ is usually used only with the present perfect tense and it means ‘a short time ago’.

  • I’ve just seen Susan coming out of the cinema.
  • Mike’s just called. Can you ring him back please?
  • Have you just taken my pen? Where has it gone?

In the present perfect, ‘just’ comes between the auxiliary verb (‘have’) and the past participle.


Yet’ is used to talk about something which is expected to happen. It means ‘at any time up to now’. It is used in questions and negatives.

  • Have you finished your homework yet? The speaker expects that the homework will be finished.
  • I haven’t finished it yet. I’ll do it after dinner.

Yet’ usually comes at the end of the sentence.


Still’ is used to talk about something that hasn’t finished – especially when we expected it to finish earlier.

  • I’ve been waiting for over an hour and the bus still hasn’t come.
  • You promised to give me that report yesterday and you still haven’t finished it.

Still’ usually comes in ‘mid-position’

Still is often used with other tenses as well as the present perfect.

  • I’ve still got all those letters you sent me.
  • Are you still working in the bookshop?


Already’ is used to say that something has happened early – or earlier than it might have happened.

  • I’ve already spent my salary and it’s two weeks before pay day.
  • The train’s already left! What are we going to do?

Already’ usually comes in mid-position.

Present Perfect Simple with Ever and Never

The adverbs ever and never express the idea of an unidentified time before now(Have you ever visited Berlin?)‘Ever’ and ‘never’ are always placed before the main verb (past participle).

Ever is used:

In questions

Have you ever been to England?
Has she
ever met the Prime Minister?

In negative questions

Haven’t they ever been to Europe?
Haven’t you ever eaten Chinese food?

In negative statements using the pattern nothing+ever or nobody+ever

Nobody has ever said that to me before.
Nothing like this has
ever happened to us.

With ‘The first time’

It’s the first time that I’ve ever eaten snails.
This is the first time I’ve ever been to England.


Never means at no time before now, and is the same as not ….. ever: (I have never visited Berlin)


You can also use the Present Perfect Continuous without a duration such as “for two weeks.” Without the duration, the tense has a more general meaning of “lately.” We often use the words “lately” or “recently” to emphasize this meaning.

-Examples: Have you been watching TV lately?

It is important to remember that non-continuous verbs cannot be used in any continuous tenses. Also, certain non-continuous meanings for mixed verbs(verbs that chage the meaning depending on if they are non-continuous or normal verbs) such as: to appear,to feel,to have,to see… cannot be used in continuous tenses. Instead of using Present Perfect Continuous with these verbs, you must use Present Perfect.


REMEMBER that if the Past Perfect action did occur at a specific time, the Simple Past can be used instead of the Past Perfect when “before” or “after” is used in the sentence. The words “before” and “after” actually tell you what happens first, so the Past Perfect is optional. For this reason, both sentences below are correct.


  • She had visited her French relatives once in 1995 before she moved in with them in 2000.
  • She visited her French relatives once in 1995 before she moved in with them in 2000.
  • HOWEVER if the Past Perfect is not referring to an action at a specific time, Past Perfect is not optional. Look at the examples below. Here Past Perfect is referring to a lack of experience rather than an action at a specific time. For this reason, Simple Past cannot be used.


    • She never saw the snow before she moved to Alaska. Not Correct
    • She had never seen the snow before she moved to Alaska. Correct


Past Continuous vs. Past Perfect Continuous

If you do not include a duration such as “for five minutes,” “for two weeks” or “since Friday,” many English speakers choose to use the Past Continuous rather than the Past Perfect Continuous. Be careful because this can change the meaning of the sentence. Past Continuous emphasizes interrupted actions, whereas Past Perfect Continuous emphasizes a duration of time before something in the past. Study the examples below to understand the difference.


  • He was tired because he was exercising so hard.
    This sentence emphasizes that he was tired because he was exercising at that exact moment.
  • He was tired because he had been exercising so hard.
    This sentence emphasizes that he was tired because he had been exercising over a period of time. It is possible that he was still exercising at that moment OR that he had just finished.


thanks for reading

Compartir en:


Los comentarios están cerrados