The simple present tense is one of the most common tenses in English. It may be used to express:
- general truths;
- a habitual action;
- an occurrence in the future;
The simple present tense is NOT used to express action that is happening now. We use present continuous for that.
We form the present simple by using: – Subject + Infinitive or Third Person + Infinitive + (s). For the person infinitives we add:
- -s to regular verbs (He thinks).
- -es to verbs ending by -s, -sh, -ch (She mixes).
- -ies to verbs ending with -y (Mark carries).
Let’s take a look at some examples:
|First person||Third person||Notes|
|The world is round||this is a general truth|
|I drink coffee every morning||He drinks coffee every morning||this is a habitual action|
|I’ll see you soon||She’ll see you soon||this is talking about the future|
|Walk down and to the left||this is a command|
You can ask questions with the simple present tense using the following formulae:
- “Do” for I, you, we and they. For example: What do you do?
- “Does” for he, she and it. For example: What does she do?
You can add “not” after “do” and “does” to create a negative sentence. For example: I do not read books, she does not read books.
Let’s do some exercises with what we have learned already. Place the appropriate simple present word in the gaps: watch, wash, drive, talk, know, enjoy, read, know.
Let’s _____ the window.
He _____ TV all day.
She _____ with her mother on the phone every day.
She _____ so many things that I don’t ____.
Do you know how to _____ a car?
I ____ drinking tea. || I heard he likes to ____ books.