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When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses | English Time Ask Elo

by Jul 5, 2019English Grammar Tips, English Time Ask Elo

When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses

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English Time Ask Elo (04/07/2019)

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When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses

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When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses

English Time Ask Elo

 

Asked by @ Nani Herlina (Community Student)

When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses

English Time Ask Elo

 

Answered by @ Elo Kasia

 

Elo Kasia is the English Mentor for  When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tensesEnglish Grammar and Speaking Academy” ,  Join now.

 

 
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When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses | English Time Ask Elo

 

 

 

When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses Question Time: When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses | English Time Ask Elo

 

When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses  @ Nani Herlina, Thank you for your question.

 

When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses  As usual, I will try to explain the difference using simple language and plenty of examples.

 

When to use different forms of the verb TO BE with continuous tenses

 

Generally speaking, is/are and was/were are different forms of the verb TO BE. It is used very often in English so it is very important to know the correct forms.

 

We use TO BE most commonly:

  1. To describe states and things which are true in the present or were true in the past
  2. As a helping verb in continuous tenses
  3. In passive voice

 

Use is/are, was/were as “helping verbs” in continuous tenses (such as Present Continuous or Past Continuous). You need a “helping verb” to make questions and negatives in English.

 

Continuous tenses are used to describe an action which is taking some time at the moment or was taking some time in the past.

 

Present and Past Continuous tenses are very similar is English. You need a correct form of TO BE + verb + ing

 

1) Present Continuous – remember to use for actions happening now, at the moment of speaking, longer actions in progress, happening around now and for future plans.

 

Is/are/am —Isn’t/aren’t/ am not — Are you? Is he/she/ it?/ am I?

  • I’m sitting in at my desk and I’m writing an article about Present Continuous.
  • I’m not talking on the phone.
  • Are you studying now?
  • Is he driving to work now?
  • They aren’t reading, they are watching TV.
  • I’m living with my sister now; my flat is being decorated.
  • I’m reading a very good book at the moment.
  • Is Sammy studying to be a doctor?
  • He isn’t working this week, he is on holiday.
  • I am meeting some friends after work.
  • I am not going to the party tonight.
  • Is he visiting his parents next weekend?
  • Isn’t he going to Portugal this summer?

 

2. Past Continuous – remember to use for actions in the past which were in progress at a particular moment or when something else interrupted them.

 

Was/ were — wasn’t/ weren’t — was I/he/she? were we/you/they?

  • Were you watching TV at 8 p.m. last night? Yes, I was.
  • Yesterday at this time, Marie was studying for her test.
  • I wasn’t talking on the phone, I promise. I was only looking at some posts on FB.
  • They were talking while I was reading my book.
  • What were you doing when the earthquake started?
  • How fast were you driving your car when the police stopped you?
  • We were going shopping when we bumped into an old friend of ours.

 

Practise the verb TO BE for continuous tenses in the following way. Practise Present Continuous by talking to yourself about what you are doing at the moment (I’m reading this post on FB), describing the actions (I’m studying TO BE now, I’m writing in my notebook) or about what you are planning for later today or this week (I’m visiting my relatives at the weekend. I’m cooking curry tonight).

 

To practise both tenses, think about what you are doing at the moment and think back to yesterday at the same time and make sentences with both. (I’m studying now, but yesterday at the same time I was working). Make the same about members of your family, your co-workers and friends. It is the best way to achieve fluency.

 
 
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Elo Kasia is the Community Mentor for English Grammar and Speaking Academy“.

 

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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