What Are the Simple Tenses?
- Grammar Lessons >
- Simple Tense
Overview of Simple Tense:
- What Is the Simple Tense?
- Examples of the Simple Tense
- The Simple Past Tense
- Formation of the Simple Past Tense
- Simple Past Tense for Regular Verbs
- Simple Past Tense for Irregular Verbs
- Simple Past Tense in Sentences
- The Simple Present Tense
- Formation of Simple Present Tense
- Simple Present Tense in Sentences
- The Simple Future Tense
- Formation of Simple Future Tense
- Simple Future Tense in Sentences
- Simple Tense - Quiz
The simple tense is the tense at its most basic form. The simple tense includes the simple past, simple present, and simple future.
Simple Past: We studied.
Simple Present: We study.
Simple Future: We will study.
The simple past tense expresses an action completed in the recent or distant past, regardless of the duration in which it happened.
While we mostly form the simple past of regular verbs in three ways, we don't have a specific rule for irregular verbs.
Add -d, -ed, or -ied to the end of the regular verb to create its simple past.
Irregular verbs form the simple past in unpredictable ways. Some modify themselves slightly, some transform completely, and some don't change at all.
Sara baked chocolate cookies. (bake-baked)
David completed his assignment. (complete- completed)
We sang and danced. (sing-sang, dance-danced)
The man burst into tears. (burst-burst)
The simple present tense expresses an action happening in the present. To be more specific, the simple present tense denotes a habit, a general truth, or an unchanging situation.
We use the root form of the verb to denote the simple present, except in the third-person singular which ends in -s most of the time and -es sometimes.
first-person singular: I read.
first-person plural: We read.
second-person singular: You read.
second-person plural: You read.
third-person singular: He/She/It reads. (Note the change.)
third-person plural: They read.
Children like reading.
The moon appears at night.
Shawn eats dinner at 6 pm.
The simple future tense expresses an action that will occur at any time later than now.
We add "will" or "shall" before the verb to from the simple future. "Shall" is used with "I" and "we" and is more formal than "will".
Judith will feed her dog.
We shall study the lesson.
My parents will travel soon.