Revision of the tenses
We use the "Present Simple" to talk about:
- Something that is true in the present.
- Things that are always true.
- Things that happen as a routine in the present.
- Scheduled or fixed events in the future.
- We use adverbs of frequency with the Present Simple.
We use the "Present Continuous" to:
- Talk about something that is happening at the moment of speaking.
- Describe something temporary.
- For actions that happen repeatedly in the present. We use it with always.
- To talk about the future, where something has been planned.
Present Perfect Simple
We use the "Present Perfect" Simple to:
- Talk about something that was true in the past and continues to be true in the present.
- Discuss our experience up to the present.
- Talk about an action that happened in the past but the consequences of which are important in the present.
- We do not use adverbial past time markers, such as yesterday, with the Present Perfect Simple. We use adverbial time markers that relate to the present, such as today, this week or this month.
Present Perfect Continuous
We use the "Present Perfect Continuous" to talk about:
- Something that began in the past and continues in the present.
- An action repeated many times from the past until the present.
- A longer action recently finished the results of which are visible in the present.
- When an action (still occurring in the present) started. We use it with since.
We use the "Past Simple" to talk about:
- Something that started and finished in the past.
- Describe a routine in the past.
- Talk about something that was true for an extended period of time in the past. In this case, we use it with a time phrase.
We use the "Past Continuous" to:
- Talk about something which was happening before and after another action in the past.
- Show that something happened for a long time in the past.
Past Perfect Simple
- We use the "Past Perfect Simple" to talk about actions that happened before a specific moment in the past.
Future with will
We use "will":
- To talk about the future if we are predicting it without evidence.
- To express spontaneous decisions.
- With perhaps, probably and maybe.
- With I think and I hope.
Future with going to
We use "going to" to talk about:
- Future plans. It does not have to be for the near future.
- Predictions that are based on evidence.