Overview of All English Tenses - Present Tenses - Present Perfect Continuous - Overview

 

And now we'll have a look at the present perfect continuous tense. As its name suggests, what we're going to do is combine the present continuous usages and the present perfect usages into a tense that basically expresses the fact that we've got an action continuing up until the present point in time. For the form of this tense, again, we're going to combine into various aspects of both the perfect and the continuous tenses. If we have a look we always begin with our subjects, then we have our, two now, helping verbs. The helping verb 'to have' for the perfect tenses, as well as the helping verb 'be' for the continuous tenses. For our subjects 'I', 'you', 'we' and 'they', we leave 'have' as 'have' and for 'he', 'she' and 'it', we conjugate it to 'has'. Because it's a continuous tense, of course we need to use the verb plus '-ing'. This results in sentences such as 'I have been teaching quite some time.' or 'She has been teaching for 15 years.' The negative form of the present perfect continuous remains the same as the positive form and we simply add 'not' in between our two helping verbs 'have' and 'be'. In order to make the present perfect continuous questions, again following with that pattern of inversion, what we've done is put the auxiliary verb 'have' at the beginning of the sentence followed now by the subject 'Have I been teaching for five years?' could be a sentence used there and again, we're going to conjugate our verb to 'has' for 'he', 'she', 'it', resulting in 'Has she been teaching for five years?' The usages for the continuous tense are very similar to that of the present perfect tense but here the focus is on the action and the fact that it has been continuing for some time leading up to the present. Let's have a look. We've got incomplete and ongoing activities with duration. 'I have been teaching for 10 years.' Then, we have our recently finished activities with present results. So our recently finished activity is 'chopping trees' but the present result is 'he is tired' so results in a sentence reading 'He is tired because he's been shopping trees.'


Below you can read feedback from an ITTT graduate regarding one section of their online TEFL certification course. Each of our online courses is broken down into concise units that focus on specific areas of English language teaching. This convenient, highly structured design means that you can quickly get to grips with each section before moving onto the next.

This unit taught me how and under what circumstances the tense should be used and how do we formed the sentences in present tenses. I have already known those present tenses but I saw some new simple examples. Also I learnt how to teach the difference between Present Perfect Simple and Present Perfect Continuous tenses. In addition to this I can easily teach the difference between the Past Simple and the Present Perfect Simple tenses in my classes from now on. Also the differences between auxiliary verbs 'do-have-to "be"' and main verbs.