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The Present Simple Tense

Updated: Aug 27, 2021

We use the present simple tense when an action is happening right now, or when it happens regularly, like every day, every week, or every month. We use the simple present tense for anything that happens often or is factual. Depending on the person, the present simple tense is formed by using the root form of the verb or by adding ‑s or ‑es to the end.

The Present Simple Tense is used in the following cases:

Now (when something is happening right now)

For example: I feel great!

The sun on my skin feels wonderful!

Habit or Routine - Doing something regularly (every week/day/month/year etc.)

For example: She goes shopping every Friday.

She washes her hair once a week.

They meet every month on the 15th

Facts or permanent solutions (Things that are facts)

For example: The sun rises in the east.

I live in South Africa.

Expressive feelings or thoughts

For example: I think he is single.

He thinks you’re pretty.

I think I love him.

Commentaries (Sports etc.)

For example: The fullback passes to Joe, who scores a goal.

He kicks the ball and it hits O’Reilly in the face!

Directions (giving someone directions)

For example: First you go right, then at the stop you go left…

Newspaper Headlines

For example: Bitcoin plummets to an all-time low.

We use do and does to make questions with the present simple. We use does for the third person singular (she/he/it) and do for the others. We use do and does with question words like where, what and when: Where do Angela and Rita live?

Let's practice!

Complete the following sentences using the correct form of the verb in brackets.

  1. I ——————— at a bank. (work)

  2. She ——————– with her parents. (live)

  3. Cows ———————– on grass. (feed)

  4. He ———————- a handsome salary. (earn)

  5. Janet ———————- to be a singer. (want)

  6. Emily ———————– delicious cookies. (make)

  7. Anna and her husband ——————- in Singapore. (live)

  8. Roxy and Sonia ———————- to play card games. (likes)

  9. Do you ________ chocolate milk? (likes)

  10. He _________ not want to go to the movies. (do)

  11. It _____ a beautiful day. (am)

  12. My parents _______ in a two-bedroom apartment. (lives)

  13. We _______ European. (is)

  14. ______ Jane play tennis? (do)

  15. Where _______ Jack and Jill live? (does)

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