Elo Kasia

Director at Eloquent - A Professional Education Company
Professional English Training Center Located In UK.
Strategy Partner of Chatsifieds.com
www.eloquentlearning.com

Talking about the Past – Present Perfect Tense | English Time Ask Elo (Updated 12/06/2019)

by | Jun 12, 2019 | English Grammar Tips, English Time Ask Elo

Talking about the Past – Present Perfect Tense | English Time Ask Elo

 

Elo Kasia

 

English Time Ask Elo (Updated on 12/06/2019)

 

 

 

 

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Talking about the Past – Present Perfect Tense | English Time Ask Elo

 

Asked by @ Jeune Pharaon  (Community Leaner)

 

Talking about the Past – Present Perfect Tense | English Time Ask Elo

 

Answered by Elo Kasia

 

Elo Kasia is the English Mentor for  Talking about the Past Present Perfect TenseEnglish Grammar and Speaking Academy”  now.

 

 

Talking about the past present perfect tense

Talking about the past – present perfect tense | English Time Ask Elo

 
 

 

🤔 Question Time: Talking about the Past – Present Perfect Tense | English Time Ask Elo

 

🙏 @ Jeune Pharaon, Thank you for your question.

 

😀 As usual, I will try to explain the difference using simple language and plenty of examples.

 
 

There are many ways to talk about the past in English. I have already explained when we use Past Simple, which is the most common way to talk about the past. It is used in situations when we talk about events that happened at a specific time and are completed.

 

The present perfect is most commonly used to talk about events which happened at an unspecified time in the past, experiences or events which continue into the present, but there are other less common uses as well. Many students find it hard to learn, both because of the form and the fact that it is similar in meaning to Past Simple.

 

I will discuss the most common usages over a number of lessons to explain it better.

 

Form:

We use have/has + verb in the Past Participle form. For most verbs add + ed, but irregular forms have to be memorised.

 

  • I haven’t finished my article yet. (finish-finished regular verb)
  • I have seen this film twice already. (see – seen irregular verb)
  • He hasn’t done his homework yet. (do -done)
  • Have they ever been abroad? (be – been)

 

1. Unspecified time before now.

 

We use the present perfect to say that an action happened at an unspecified time before now. The exact time is not important. We use unspecific time expressions such as: ever, never, once, many times, several times, before, so far, already, yet, etc. The focus is on whether something happened or not and we are not concerned about the time when it happened.

 

We often use it to ask people about their experiences or to talk about our experiences, it is the same as saying “I’ve had or I haven’t had the experience of …”

 

Some examples:

 

  • I have never tried Japanese sushi.
  • My parents have never been abroad.
  • Nicolas has already visited over 30 countries and he is only 25.
  • I haven’t so far won anything.
  • My uncle has once appeared on TV.

 

It is often used in questions, when we ask if somebody has done something at any point in the past (until now) or “has had the experience of…”

 

Study these examples:

 

  • Have you ever been to China? No, I haven’t but I would love to go one day.
  • Have you ever tried Indian cooking? Yes, I have.
  • Really? When did you first try it?
  • I first tried it in an Indian restaurant in London a couple of years ago.

 

Notice how when we talk about unspecified time, we use Present Perfect, but then once we establish that somebody has done something, we can ask more questions or add more details in Past Simple.

 

More examples:

 

  • Have you ever travelled on your own?
  • Yes, I have. When I was as a student I went hitchhiking around Europe on my own.
  • Has your boyfriend ever lied to you?
  • Yes, he has. When we first met, he told me he worked in the bank. But after a few weeks he admitted that he worked there as a security guard!

 

Make sure that you do our exercises and practise the usage as much as you can.

 

Try to think of several common situations in which you could use this tense, memorise the most common questions “have you ever been/visited/ done/seen/ eaten/ had…”, etc. and then it will come automatically to you when the time comes to use it.

 

 

Talking about the past present perfect tense

Talking about the past – present perfect tense | English Time Ask Elo

 

I have already introduced you to some examples of Present Perfect Tense.

 
The present perfect is most commonly used to talk about events which happened at unspecified time in the past, experiences or events which continue into the present, but there are other less common uses as well.
 
 
Remember we use have/has + verb in the Past Participle form. For most verbs add + ed, but irregular forms have to be memorised.
 
  • I haven’t finished my article yet. (finish-finished regular verb)
  • I have seen this film twice already. (see – seen irregular verb)
  • He hasn’t done his homework yet. (do -done)
  • Have they ever been abroad? (be – been)

 

Accomplishments
 
 
We often use the present perfect to list the accomplishments of individuals and humanity. You cannot mention a specific time.
 
 
Examples:
  • Man has walked on the Moon.
  • Our son has learned how to read.
  • Doctors have cured many deadly diseases.
  • Scientists have split the atom.
 
Look at these examples about the famous (not to mention gorgeous) Hollywood actor, Johnny Depp.
 
What a life!
 
• He has been married twice.
• He has moved houses more than 20 times.
• He has tried wine-making.
• He has played with various famous bands on stage.
• He has had a fossil named after him.
• He has given $1 million to a hospital.
• He has been voted one of the 50 Most Beautiful People by People Magazine!
• He has played in more than 70 films.
 
 
BUT
 
• He has never won an Oscar!
Try to think of your own accomplishments, what you have achieved in your life, make sentences and try to memorise them.
 
 
 
 
 
Talking about the Past Present Perfect Tense Elo Kasia is the Community Mentor for English Grammar and Speaking Academy”  and Director at Eloquent Learning Online School www.eloquentlearning.com.

 

Elo Kasia

Director at Eloquent Learning - A Professional Education Company Located In UK. , Strategy Partner of Chatsifieds.com

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