Present Continuous Tense - Quynh Huong Center for Foreign Language Translation & Education

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4 Sept 2014

Present Continuous Tense

a. Form: S + BE (is/ are/ am) + Ving
b. Spelling of verbs + _ing
  • The normal rule is to add "_ing" to the base form of the verbs. Ex: going, wearing, visiting, eating...
  • Verbs that end in "-e" lose "e". Ex: smoking, coming, hoping, writing... But verbs that end in "-ee" do not lose an "e". Ex: agreeing, seeing...
  • In verbs of one syllable, with one consonant, the consonant is doubled. Ex: stopping, getting, running, planning, jogging... But if the final consonant is "_y" or "_w", it is not doubled. Ex: playing, showing...
c. Uses
  • An activity happening now. Ex: They are playing football in the garden. It is heavily raining now.
  • An activity happening around now, but perhaps not at the moment of speaking. Ex: She is studying English at university. I am reading a good book by Henry James.
  • A planned future arrangement. Ex: I am meeting Miss Boyd at 10 o'clock tomorrow. He is leaving for Paris next week.
  • Express the change and the development. Ex: Things are getting better. She is getting fatter and fatter.
  • The temporary or repeated actions. Ex: My car has broken down, so I am walking to work these days. Are you playing badminton?
  • Express the bad habits, often go with some adverbs: "constantly, continually, forever..." Ex: You are always complaining about my studying. She is continually saying that she is tired and bored.
Note: some feeling, thinking, and opinion verbs are not used in present continuous: "love, like, dislike, desire, wish, forgive, smell, hear, think, recognize, believe, feel, understand..." and some possessive adjectives are also not used in present continuous: "own, possess, belong, owe..."

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