Saturday, 15 May 2010

Habits, routines, and facts: using Simple Present Tense

"Both Silvia and Juan work at Berlitz"

Hello Tribe!
Last time I described how BE is used. Today's turn is for DO, DOES nad their use in what is called Simple Present or Present Simple tense. Both are important stepping stones which differ in how easily students learn them: BE is usually the first thing pupils memorize. Simple Present is used with many mistakes by even intermediate and advanced learners.

We use Present Simple Tense to describe everyday habits and routines:

I work at a school and she works with me. We don't study here. She doesn't drive, she takes the bus everyday. I usually take the tube (underground)

Notice that the auxiliary verbs Do and Does are used to form negative sentences and the main verb is used in base or simple form when the auxiliary is utilised. The verb BE as an auxiliary is not used with this tense.

We also use the Present Simple Tense to describe Facts:

Most Mexicans speak Spanish. Some people in Mexico speak other languages like Nahuatl. People there don't use English as their second language.

Questions are formed using Do and Does and short answers use these two auxiliaries as well:

Do you live here? No, we don't. We live close but not here.
Does she have a car? Yes, she does. She has a red mini cooper.

I. Answer these questions:

1. Where do you live?
2. What do you do for a living?
3. Do you work or study?
4. Do you exercise?
5. Do you speak another language?
6. Does someone live with you?
7. What does your best friend do?
8. Where does he or she live?
9. Does your friend speak English?
10. Where do you usually go together?