I thought of giving you some English grammar tests on tenses because tenses play a very important role in framing sentences. Without a good knowledge of tenses, one cannot write correct sentences.
As a matter of fact, it’s not a tough thing to acquire good knowledge of tenses. Use of tenses conforms to a set of rules. If you know these rules, it’s damn easy to write your sentences with correct form of the tense.
As such, we shall discuss tenses in brief and then move on to the test. Taking the tests on tenses, you will be able to assign a grade to your knowledge about them. Let’s start.
Opening Photo by Max Fischer from Pexels
What are Tenses?
Simply defined, tense is the time of occurrence of the verb in a sentence. For example, observe the sentence: “He ran towards his house.”
From the above, it occurs that the event happened some time ago. So the tense is ‘Past Tense’. That’s why the past form of the verb ‘run’, i.e. ‘ran’ has been used here.
Types of Tenses With Examples
Past Tense – For actions that happened earlier, e.g. Sonam ate the chocolate with great joy.
Present Tense – For actions that are happening now, e.g. Jessica is visiting Japan currently.
Future Tense – For actions that will happen in the time to come, e.g. They will select you.
Apart from the basic classification of tenses, you need to know that each tense has been sub classified into four types:
- Indefinite or simple (Verb in the simplest form as per first, second or third person use/ e.g. go or goes, play or plays etc.)
- Continuous (Verb in present participle form, i.e. ending in ‘ing’/ e.g. “is repairing’, “were visiting” etc.)
- Perfect (verb starts with ‘has, ‘have’ or ‘had’ and ends in past participle form/ e.g. “has gone”/ “had jumped”)
- Perfect continuous (verb starts with ‘has been, ‘have been’ or ‘had been’ and ends in present participle form/ e.g. “has been working”)
N.B. Try to make a concept as to how the form of the verb changes when you write in different tenses. This will help you when you are taking tests on tenses. Your blog posts will not suffer from basic grammar mistakes.
Simple or Indefinite Tense:
For actions occurring regularly or habitually. Such a tense does not tell you whether the action is over or is still in continuation.
Present indefinite or Simple present : She goes to school on foot.
Past indefinite or Simple Past: They sold their stake in the company in March.
Future Indefinite or Simple Future: We shall participate in the tournament for the first time.
Mark in the above sentences that the verb does not specifically suggest the completion of the action. That’s why the name of the tense is ‘indefinite’.
You will understand this better when you’ve gone through all the four types of tenses because you can then compare the tenses and see the difference.
In all of past, present and future tenses, there is a continuous form. It denotes the work was, is or will be in continuation.
Past continuous: We were fishing when they arrived here.
Present continuous: They are fighting the battle with all their might.
Future continuous: She will be visiting her parents in Missouri.
We use perfect tense to denote recent completion of action.
Past perfect tense: Ananya and Gokul had moved to a new accommodation in Navi Mumbai.
Present perfect tense: I have written a letter to my sister.
Future perfect tense: They will have completed the project by fifteenth of the next month.
Perfect Continuous Tense:
This tense symbolizes that the action is, was or will be in continuation for a prolonged period.
Past perfect continuous tense: I had been reading the book for three hours.
Present perfect continuous tense: Suresh has been working since three O’clock.
Future perfect continuous tense: In 2024, I will have been doing the job for seven years.
Tests on Tenses
Q1: Name the tense in the following sentences:
- The teacher taught the lesson yesterday.
- Rachita has completed such a project a little while ago.
- She had done so to ease out the entire process.
- I will claim whatever amount I can.
- Everything works fine when the boss is in the office.
- Past indefinite or simple past tense
- Present perfect tense
- Past perfect tense
- Future indefinite or simple future tense
- Present indefinite or simple present tense
Q2: Fill up the gaps with correct (and best) form of the verb given in brackets to match the implied tense in the following sentences and name the tense of the verb in question:
- He (go) to Mumbai to smoothen the bitter relations. However, the attendees of his meeting, somehow, got irritated.
- Four years hence, Novina (study) at Texas for three years and will be completing her doctorate thereafter.
- Ravi and Shakti (go) towards the old school when I saw them last time.
- If you (come) to Ashu’s house tonight, we shall talk to the minister about the problems in our colony.
- Seeta (write) a letter just now.
- Seniors at the hostel (take) good care of the juniors in those times.
- A big crowd (gather) in the center of the city right now.
- Troops (conquer) the city by evening tomorrow.
- had gone, past perfect tense
- will have been studying, future perfect continuous tense
- were going, past continuous tense
- come, present indefinite OR are coming, present continuous tense
- has written, present perfect tense
- took, simple past or past indefinite tense
- gathering, present continuous tense
- Will have conquered, future perfect tense
Q3: Choose the correct answer for the following:
A. Birds (fly) in the sky at that time.
- were flowing
- was flying
- has flown
- were flying
B. The match (end) by half past four in the evening tomorrow.
- will have ended
- will be ending
C. We (play) in this ground everyday.
- have played
- will have played
D. The stock market (go) down by 200 points today.
- has gone
- is going
- has been going
E. She (go) before he arrived.
- has gone
- will go
- had gone
- is going
A(2), B(1), C(4), D(2), E(3)
Q4: Correct the form of the verb in the following sentences:
- It is raining heavily yesterday.
- The soccer match is scheduled for yesterday.
- If I will happen to meat him tonight, we will start to execute the plan.
- Boys played well. They will not yield to the pressure.
- The train left the station before he reached.
- was raining
- was scheduled
- I happen
- did not yield
- had left
More Tests on Tenses
For now, we are stopping. But I load this article with more tests on tenses, I will inform you through email and other forms of intimation. The more you practice, the more proficient you become.
Finally, I’ll also share a secret with you. The more you read English books and articles, the better you handle the tenses. This is so because, there is definitely an underlying fact. With the correct usage of the tenses you want to make your article flow correctly in time. In other words, tenses keep the ‘when’ of ‘what’s happening’, very clear.
So, wait for more tests on tenses and they will give you ample opportunities to sharpen your skills.
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