Present Simple – Summary

We use the present simple to make general statements of fact. We also use it to talk about repeated actions and to describe things that are always true. It can be used negatively, positively and for questions. We can even use it to talk about the future and the past. But, we don’t use it to talk about things that are happening now. We use the present continuous for that.

Statements of Fact
– I work at Sankofa Academy
– He wants a new car.
– They feel undervalued.

*Notice with the present simple, we use the infinitive of the verb.

Things That Are Always True
These statements are different to the statements of fact above becuase these statements will always be true, but the statements of fact may change over time. They are statements of fact at the moement of speaking or writing.

– When you heat water, it boils.
– The earth goes around the sun
– There are twelve months in a year

Repeated Actions
– He finishes work at 5pm everyday
– I travel on business every wednesday
– We have a staff meeting first thing every Monday.

*Notice the conjugation of many verbs in the present tense. The third person singular changes conjugation (I finish, you finish, he/she/it finishes). Often an “s” is placed at the end of the third person, and this is often forgotten by learners.

Fixed arrangements / scheduled or timetabled events (future)
– The train leaves at 6pm
– The bus goes to London everyday.

Sequence of Actions in the Present
– First I get up, then I have a shower.
– I go to the office, then I meet with my colleagues.
– We play squash, then we have dinner.

Want to know if you have understood this page well? Practice here.

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