Simple Present Tense

English Grammar Rules
The simple present tense in English is used to describe an action that is
regular, true or normal.
We use the present tense:
1. For repeated or regular actions in the present time period.
 I take the train to the office.
 The train to Berlin leaves every hour.
 John sleeps eight hours every night during the week.
2. For facts.
 The President of The USA lives in The White House.
 A dog has four legs.
 We come from Switzerland.
3. For habits.
 I get up early every day.
 Carol brushes her teeth twice a day.
 They travel to their country house every weekend.
4. For things that are always / generally true.
 It rains a lot in winter.
 The Queen of England lives in Buckingham Palace.
 They speak English at work.


Verb Conjugation & Spelling
We form the present tense using the base form of the infinitive (without the
TO).
In general, in the third person we add 'S' in the third person.
Subject Verb The Rest of the sentence
I / you / we / they speak / learn English at home
he / she / it speaks / learns English at home
The spelling for the verb in the third person differs depending on the ending of
that verb:
1. For verbs that end in -O, -CH, -SH, -SS, -X, or -Z we add -ES in the third
person.
 go – goes
 catch – catches
 wash – washes
 kiss – kisses
 fix – fixes
 buzz – buzzes
2. For verbs that end in a consonant + Y, we remove the Y and add -IES.
 marry – marries
 study – studies
 carry – carries
 worry – worries
NOTE: For verbs that end in a vowel + Y, we just add -S.
 play – plays
 enjoy – enjoys
 say – says


Negative Sentences in the Simple Present Tense
To make a negative sentence in English we normally use Don't or
Doesn't with all verbs EXCEPT To Be and Modal verbs (can, might, should
etc.).
 Affirmative: You speak French.
Negative: You don't speak French.
You will see that we add don't between the subject and the verb. We
use Don't when the subject is I,you, we or they.
 Affirmative: He speaks German.
Negative: He doesn't speak German.
When the subject is he, she or it, we add doesn't between the subject and
the verb to make a negative sentence. Notice that the letter S at the end of the
verb in the affirmative sentence (because it is in third person) disappears in
the negative sentence. We will see the reason why below.


Negative Contractions
Don't = Do not
Doesn't = Does not
I don't like meat = I do not like meat.
There is no difference in meaning though we normally use contractions in
spoken English.


Word Order of Negative Sentences
The following is the word order to construct a basic negative sentence in
English in the Present Tense using Don't or Doesn't.
Subject don't/doesn't Verb* The Rest of the sentence
I / you / we / they don't
have / buy
eat / like etc.
cereal for breakfast
he / she / it doesn't
* Verb: The verb that goes here is the base form of the infinitive = The
infinitive without TO before the verb. Instead of the infinitive To have it is just
the have part.
Remember that the infinitive is the verb before it is conjugated (changed) and
it begins with TO. For example: to have, to eat, to go, to live, to speak etc.
Examples of Negative Sentences with Don't and Doesn't:
 You don't speak Arabic.
 John doesn't speak Italian.
 We don't have time for a rest.
 It doesn't move.
 They don't want to go to the party.
 She doesn't like fish.



Questions in the Simple Present Tense
To make a question in English we normally use Do or Does. It has no
translation in Spanish though it is essential to show we are making a question.
It is normally put at the beginning of the question.
 Affirmative: You speak English.
Question: Do you speak English?
You will see that we add DO at the beginning of the affirmative sentence to
make it a question. We useDo when the subject is I, you, we or they.
 Affirmative: He speaks French.
Question: Does he speak French?
When the subject is he, she or it, we add DOES at the beginning to make the
affirmative sentence a question. Notice that the letter S at the end of the verb
in the affirmative sentence (because it is in third person) disappears in the
question. We will see the reason why below.
We DON'T use Do or Does in questions that have the verb To Be or Modal
Verbs (can, must, might, should etc.)


Word Order of Questions with Do and Does
The following is the word order to construct a basic question in English
using Do or Does.
Do/Does Subject Verb* The Rest of the sentence
Do I / you / we / they
have / need
want etc.
a new bike?
Does he / she / it
*Verb: The verb that goes here is the base form of the infinitive = The infinitive
without TO before the verb. Instead of the infinitive To have it is just
the have part.
Remember that the infinitive is the verb before it is conjugated (changed) and
it begins with TO. For example: to have, to eat, to go, to live, to speak etc.
Examples of Questions with Do and Does:
 Do you need a dictionary?
 Does Mary need a dictionary?
 Do we have a meeting now?
 Does it rain a lot in winter?
 Do they want to go to the party?
 Does he like pizza?


Short Answers with Do and Does
In questions that use do/does it is possible to give short answers to direct
questions as follows:
Sample Questions
Short Answer
(Affirmative)
Short Answer
(Negative)
Do you like chocolate? Yes, I do. No, I don't.
Do I need a pencil? Yes, you do. No, you don't.
Do you both like chocolate? Yes, we do. No, we don't.
Do they like chocolate? Yes, they do. No, they don't.
Does he like chocolate? Yes, he does. No, he doesn't.
Does she like chocolate? Yes, she does. No, she doesn't.
Does it have four wheels? Yes, it does. No, it doesn't.
However, if a question word such
as who, when, where, why, which or how is used in the question, you can
not use the short answers above to respond to the question.



The FUTURE TENSE indicates that an action is in the future relative to the
speaker or writer. There are no inflected forms for the future in English (nothing
like those -ed or -s endings in the other tenses). Instead, the future tense employs
the helping verbs will or shall with the base form of the verb:
 She will leave soon.
 We shall overcome.
The future is also formed with the use of a form of "go" plus the infinitive of the
verb:
 He is going to faint.
English can even use the present to suggest the future tense:
 I am leaving later today."

Note that the auxiliary will can be combined with "be" and a progressive form of
the main verb to create a sense of the future that does not harbor any hint of
insistence (which is possible with the auxiliary alone). For instance, if stress is
placed on the word will in "When will you arrive?", the sentence can sound
impatient, insistent. In "When will you be arriving?" there is less of that
emotional overtone.
The construction form of to be + infinitive is used to convey a sense of planning
for the future, command, or contingency.
 There is to be an investigation into the mayor's business affairs.
 You are to be back on the base by midnight.
 If he is to pass this exam, he'll have to study harder.

To create a sense of imminent fulfillment, the word about can be combined with
the infinitive.
 He is about to die.
Other adverbs can be used in similar constructions with various effects:
 He is liable to get in trouble.
 She is certain to do well in college.
Singular Plural
I will walk we will walk
you will walk you will walk
he/she/it will walk they will walk

Singular Plural
I will sleep we will sleep
you will sleep you will sleep
he/she/it will sleep they will sleep

Singular Plural
I will be we will be
you will be you will be
he/she/it will be they will be


Simple Future
Simple Future has two different forms in English: "will" and "be going to." Although the
two forms can sometimes be used interchangeably, they often express two very
different meanings. These different meanings might seem too abstract at first, but with
time and practice, the differences will become clear. Both "will" and "be going to" refer to
a specific time in the future.

FORM Will
[will + verb]
Examples:
 You will help him later.
 Will you help him later?
 You will not help him later.
FORM Be Going To
[am/is/are + going to + verb]
Examples:
 You are going to meet Jane tonight.
 Are you going to meet Jane tonight?
 You are not going to meet Jane tonight.
Complete List of Simple Future Forms
USE 1 "Will" to Express a Voluntary Action
"Will" often suggests that a speaker will do something voluntarily. A voluntary action is
one the speaker offers to do for someone else. Often, we use "will" to respond to
someone else's complaint or request for help. We also use "will" when we request that
someone help us or volunteer to do something for us. Similarly, we use "will not" or
"won't" when we refuse to voluntarily do something.
Examples:
 I will send you the information when I get it.
 I will translate the email, so Mr. Smith can read it.
 Will you help me move this heavy table?
 Will you make dinner?
 I will not do your homework for you.
 I won't do all the housework myself!
 A: I'm really hungry.
B: I'll make some sandwiches.
 A: I'm so tired. I'm about to fall asleep.
B: I'll get you some coffee.
 A: The phone is ringing.
B: I'll get it.
USE 2 "Will" to Express a Promise
"Will" is usually used in promises.
Examples:
 I will call you when I arrive.
 If I am elected President of the United States, I will make sure everyone has
access to inexpensive health insurance.
 I promise I will not tell him about the surprise party.
 Don't worry, I'll be careful.
 I won't tell anyone your secret.
USE 3 "Be going to" to Express a Plan
"Be going to" expresses that something is a plan. It expresses the idea that a person
intends to do something in the future. It does not matter whether the plan is realistic or
not.
Examples:
 He is going to spend his vacation in Hawaii.
 She is not going to spend her vacation in Hawaii.
 A: When are we going to meet each other tonight?
B: We are going to meet at 6 PM.
 I'm going to be an actor when I grow up.
 Michelle is going to begin medical school next year.
 They are going to drive all the way to Alaska.
 Who are you going to invite to the party?
 A: Who is going to make John's birthday cake?
B: Sue is going to make John's birthday cake.
USE 4 "Will" or "Be Going to" to Express a Prediction
Both "will" and "be going to" can express the idea of a general prediction about the
future. Predictions are guesses about what might happen in the future. In "prediction"
sentences, the subject usually has little control over the future and therefore USES 1-3
do not apply. In the following examples, there is no difference in meaning.
Examples:
 The year 2222 will be a very interesting year.
 The year 2222 is going to be a very interesting year.
 John Smith will be the next President.
 John Smith is going to be the next President.
 The movie "Zenith" will win several Academy Awards.
 The movie "Zenith" is going to win several Academy Awards.
IMPORTANT
In the Simple Future, it is not always clear which USE the speaker has in mind. Often,
there is more than one way to interpret a sentence's meaning.
No Future in Time Clauses
Like all future forms, the Simple Future cannot be used in clauses beginning with time
expressions such as: when, while, before, after, by the time, as soon as, if, unless, etc.
Instead of Simple Future, Simple Present is used.
Examples:
 When you will arrive tonight, we will go out for dinner. Not Correct
 When you arrive tonight, we will go out for dinner. Correct
ADVERB PLACEMENT
The examples below show the placement for grammar adverbs such as: always, only,
never, ever, still, just, etc.
Examples:
 You will never help him.
 Will you ever help him?
 You are never going to meet Jane.
 Are you ever going to meet Jane?
ACTIVE / PASSIVE
Examples:
 John will finish the work by 5:00 PM. ACTIVE
 The work will be finished by 5:00 PM. PASSIVE
 Sally is going to make a beautiful dinner tonight. ACTIVE
 A beautiful dinner is going to be made by Sally tonight. PASSIVE