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PRESENT PERFECT SIMPLE
PAST SIMPLE VS. PRESENT PERFECT SIMPLE
“This year” is an unfinished time expression.
“the 7th October” is a past and finished expression of time. The action indicated by “started” is complete. We started our lessons on the 9th October. Yes, we did. We´ve had 8 lessons this year. “This year” is an unfinished time expression. We still have lessons now. The action is not complete.
ACTIONS EXPRESSED BY PAST SIMPLE AND PRESENT PERFECT
PRESENT PERFECT SIMPLE PAST SIMPLE Completed actions that took place in a finished period of time: Carol bought a new dress yesterday. A sequence of past actions: He got up at eight o´clock, got dressed and had breakfast before leaving for work. Unfinished actions: We´ve lived in Madrid for 2 years. (= we still live there) Actions that have a present consequence: I´ve cut my finger. Actions that took place at no specific time: Have you ever seen any of Pedro Almodovar´s films?
PRESENT PERFECT SIMPLE
TIME EXPRESSIONS PRESENT PERFECT SIMPLE PAST SIMPLE Completed and finished periods of time. yesterday last week/month/year two weeks ago in 2005 when I was a boy when I met him Periods of time that are not finished. today tonight this week/month/ year this morning/ afternoon / evening
Exercise 1 Choose the right tense to complete the sentences: Past Simple or Present Perfect Simple
have studied I (study) English since I was a child.
met I (meet) my husband two years ago when I was living in London.
have been I (go) to many concerts in my life. went In fact, I (go) to U2´s concert in Barcelona in 2009.
Remember: “Go” has two “has gone” present perfect forms “has been” Peter has gone shopping. = He didn´t come back. Peter has been shopping. = He´s back now.
FOR AND SINCE WITH PRESENT PERFECT
SINCE (preposition or conjunction) FOR (preposition) We use “for” with periods of time to stress the duration of an action that started in the past and continues in the present. We´ve had lessons for two months. I´ve been a teacher for 23 years. We use “since” to mark the start of an action that began in the past and continues in the present. It can be a preposition: I´ve been a teacher since or a conjunction, followed by a clause (subject and verb): I´ve been a teacher since I left university.
JUST “Just” is an adverb used with the present perfect to emphasize that the action expressed by the verb was completed very recently. I´ve just explained to you the difference between “for” and “since”. (some minutes ago) You´ve just read an example that shows the use of “just” with the present perfect simple. (30 seconds ago) “just” is placed before the past participle.
ALREADY “Already” is used with positive and interrogative sentences to refer to an unspecified time before now. Have you already done your homework? Fina has already sent me her description of a friend. Have you decided where to go already? “Already” can be placed just before the past participle or at the end of the sentence.
YET “Yet” is used in negative and interrogative sentences to stress the time before now. It´s the opposite of “already”. e.g. You haven´t studied the vocabulary yet. (before now) Has she come back from Dublin yet? “Yet” is placed at the end of the sentence.
Exercise 2 Choose the right word to complete the sentences.
“already” or “yet?” yet Have you seen this film ? “for” or “since?” No, I haven´t. Actually, I haven´t been to the cinema a long time. for
for or since? My parents have been married they were at university. since already or just? just Indeed, they´ve celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary today.
Peter has done the ironing .
already or yet? already Peter has done the ironing But he hasn´t cooked dinner . You could also say: “Peter has already done the ironing”. yet
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