Verb tense: Present Continous

Hi Sweetie,

Let’s now study a new verb tense: Present Continous. It is simple verb tense, similar to one in Portuguese.

Present Continous

am is are + Present Participle

You are watching TV.
Are you watching TV?
You are not watching TV.

Use 1: Now


Use the Present Continuous to express the idea that something is happening now, at this very moment. It can also be used to show that something is not happening now.

You are learning English now.
You are not swimming now.
Are you sleeping?
I am sitting.
I am not standing.
Is he sitting or standing?
They are reading their books.
They are not watching television.
What are you doing?
Why aren’t you doing your homework?

Use 2 Longer Actions in Progress Now


In English, now can mean: this second, today, this month, this year, this century, and so on. Sometimes, we use the Present Continuous to say that we are in the process of doing a longer action which is in progress; however, we might not be doing it at this exact second.

I am studying to become a doctor.
I am not studying to become a dentist.
I am reading the book Tom Sawyer.
I am not reading any books right now.
Are you working on any special projects at work?
Aren’t you teaching at the university now?

Use 3: Near Future


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

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 coming with us tonight?

Use 4: Repetition and Irritation with Always


The Present Continuous with words such as always or constantly expresses the idea that something irritating or shocking often happens. Notice that the meaning is like Simple Present, but with negative emotion. Remember to put the words always or constantly between be and verb+ing.

She is always coming to class late.
He is constantly talking. I wish he would shut up.
I don’t like them because they are always complaining.


Non-Continuous Verbs and Mixed Verbs

It is important to remember that there are verbs that cannot be used in any continuous tenses (Non-Continuous Verbs). Also, certain non-continuous meanings for Mixed Verbs (another special class of English verbs) cannot be used in continuous tenses. Instead of using Present Continuous with these verbs, you must use Simple Present.

She is loving this chocolate ice cream.
She loves this chocolate ice cream.

Adverb Placement

The examples below show the placement for grammar adverbs such as: always, only, never, ever, still, just etc.

You are still watching TV.
Are you still watching TV?


Do the following exercises:

Beijo do pai!


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