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Present Progressive (Continuous) Tense

Updated on November 15, 2023

Capturing the Moment with Present Progressive Tense #

The present progressive, also known as the present continuous tense, is like a snapshot of actions in motion. Languagehood’s guide to the present progressive tense equips learners with the ability to capture and convey ongoing actions and events happening at the moment of speaking.

Understanding the Present Progressive Tense #

The present progressive tense is used to indicate actions that are currently in progress or trends that are happening right now. It can also be used to describe future plans or actions that are temporarily ongoing.

When to Use the Present Progressive Tense #

  • Current Actions: When an action is taking place as it’s being described.
    • “She is studying for her exams right now.”
  • Current Trends: Describing trends or situations that are developing.
    • “More people are using renewable energy sources these days.”
  • Future Arrangements: Scheduled or planned future events.
    • “We are meeting our friends for dinner tonight.”
  • Repeated Actions with ‘Always’: To express annoyance or criticism about repeated actions (often with ‘always’).
    • “He is always leaving his clothes on the floor!”

Forming the Present Progressive Tense #

To form the present progressive tense, use the present tense of the verb ‘to be’ (am/is/are) followed by the ‘-ing’ form of the main verb.

  • Affirmative: Subject + am/is/are + main verb-ing
    • “I am going, he/she/it is going, we/you/they are going.”
  • Negative: Subject + am/is/are + not + main verb-ing
    • “I am not going, he/she/it is not going, we/you/they are not going.”
  • Question: Am/Is/Are + subject + main verb-ing?
    • “Am I going? Is he/she/it going? Are we/you/they going?”

Common Mistakes to Avoid #

  • Forgetting the ‘to be’ Verb: The present progressive cannot exist without the correct form of ‘to be.’
    • Incorrect: “She studying right now.”
    • Correct: “She is studying right now.”
  • Incorrect Verb Form: Not adding ‘-ing’ to the main verb.
    • Incorrect: “We are meet for lunch.”
    • Correct: “We are meeting for lunch.”

Examples for Practice #

  • “It is raining outside.”
  • “They are building a new library near the park.”
  • “You are making great progress in your English classes.”

The present progressive tense is all about what’s happening at this moment, giving a sense of immediacy and relevance to the actions described. Through this guide, Languagehood aims to provide a clear understanding of the tense’s formation and uses, enabling learners to describe the world as it unfolds around them.

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