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Present continuous PDF rules Grammar rules with examples.
Present continuous tense
We use the verb to be + the present participle to make the present continuous forms: I am reading. You are crying. The wind is blowing.
Positive statements: I am playing, you are playing, he is playing, we are playing, they are playing
Short forms: I'm playing, you're playing, he's playing, we're playing, they're playing
Negative statements: I am not sitting, you are not sitting, he is not sitting
Short forms: I'm not sitting, you aren't sitting (you're not...), he isn't sitting (he's not...)
Questions: Am I eating? Are you eating? Is he eating?
Negative questions: Am I not watching? Are you not watching? Is he not watching?
Short forms: Aren't you watching? Isn't he watching?
Negative questions normally express a surprise.
Isn't he working?
1. We use the present continuous tense to say that something is happening at the time of speaking.
I am doing housework at the moment.
Look at him! What is he doing?
2. It is used for temporary activities that are true now, but not necessarily happening at the time of speaking.
I am in London. I am learning English here.
You can't meet him this week. He is working in Bath.
3. We use the present continuous for planned future arrangements. The time of the action must be given in the sentence (soon, tomorrow, on Monday, next week).
We are leaving on Monday.
She is starting next week.
4. With always we can express the idea that something happens too often and it annoys us.
I am always forgetting my keys.
He is always smoking in the living room!
We do not normally use these groups of verbs (state verbs) in the continuous form:
A. Verbs of senses: feel, hear, see, smell, taste.
I can hear you. Can you see the bird?
B. Verbs of liking and disliking: like, love, hate, fear, detest, want, wish...
I like animals. I hate snakes.
C. Verbs of mental states: agree, believe, forget, know, remember, suppose, think...
I agree with you. I suppose you are right.
D. Verbs of permanent states: be, have, belong, contain, owe, own, possess...
This pen belongs to me. I have a new pet.
E. Verbs of appearance: seem, appear, look, sound...
It seems that it will rain. Your new haircut looks really good.
If some of these verbs are used in the present continuous, they become action verbs and have a different meaning.
I think he is my best friend. (mental state)
I'm thinking of giving him a present. (mental activitiy)
He has a new bathroom. (possess)
He is having a bath. (take a bath)
I see what you mean. (know)
I am seeing a doctor. I am ill. (visit)
The flower smells beautiful. (scent)
The dog is smelling the sausage. (sniff)
This wine tastes sour. (It is sour.)
She is tasting the soup if it is warm enough. (She is doing it.)
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