THE PRESENT SIMPLE TENSE; ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT

You might find it difficult to understand the tense system but if you start with basics, your work gets much easier and you get a better understanding of it. 

Let us begin with the basic tense which is the ‘Present Simple Tense’. One of the most basic tenses in the English language is the Present Simple tense which uses the base form of the verb (excluding the verb ‘be’). The one change from the base is the addition of the letter ‘s’ for third person singular.

The two basic structures for the Present Simple tense are the ‘Positive Sentence’ and the ‘Negative and Question sentence’. 

  1. POSITIVE SENTENCES
subject+Main verb
Present Simple
  1. NEGATIVE AND QUESTION SENTENCES
Subject+Auxiliary ‘do’+Main verb
Conjugated in Present Simple
Do, doesbase

Let us look at some examples for better understanding:

      SUBJECTAUXILIARY VERBMAIN VERB
+I, we, they, you      drive      car
He, she, it      drives      car
I, we, they, you      donot      drive      car
He, she, it      doesnot      drive      car
?DoI, we, they, you      drive      car
Doeshe,she,it      drive      car?

Now, from the given examples from the above, we will notice the following points:

 In the case of positive sentences,

  • There is no Auxiliary verb
  • We are conjugating the main verb by adding ‘s’ to the third person singular.

In the case of negative and question sentences,

  • The main verb is invariable in base form: base
  • Auxiliary verb (do) is conjugated in Present Simple: do, does
  • In negative sentences, we put ‘not’ in between the auxiliary verb and the main verb.
  • In question sentences, we exchange the subject along with the auxiliary verb.

Usually, in the case of positive sentences, the auxiliary verb ‘do’ is not used. But, if we want to focus on something, we can use it. 

For example:

Instead of saying ‘I like your accent’, we can say ‘I do like your accent’. This proves how much we like it. Here are some more examples:

  • You do look handsome today.
  • I do appreciate that you spoke up.
  • I do wish that you stay happy.

For stative verbs, we are free to use the Present Simple to talk about ‘now’. Actions are not described by Stative verbs but they do describe the state and are verbs such as: like, sound, belong to, need, and seem. 

For example:

  • I play basketball.
  • This seems exciting. 
  • Do you need my support?

The verb ‘be’ is a stative verb and we use it in the Present Simple Tense in order to talk about ‘now’ situations and the ‘general’ situations. The examples of the verb ‘be’ are explained out of which some are ‘general’ and some are ‘now’.

  • She is not ugly.
  • Why are you so smart?
  • He is handsome.

Now that you are well aware of the Present Simple Tense, let’s get on to some exercises. Ensure that you solve these questions for your sake to revise the topic.

EXERCISE QUESTIONS

Change the tense of the following sentences to a Simple Present Tense.

  1. I am going to eat today.
  2. Let’s play football.
  3. I will be going on a date tomorrow.
  4. Her mom will be very furious.
  5. He needs to do something for his work.

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