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Students name: __________________________________ .

Professor Eduardo Allgayer


Verb Tenses: Present Perfect vs. Past Simple.
Both the present perfect and the past simple are used to indicate actions in the past, but
they are different. If you want to indicate an action at a specific time, use the past simple.
Sentences in the present perfect describe actions that happened in the past, but the
listener does not know when in the past. ALSO, sentences in the present perfect can
describe actions that started in the past and continue to the present.
The past simple is a specific verb tense and is often irregular. To make the present perfect,
you must use 2 verbs: an auxiliary verb (has or have) and the past participle of a verb.

eat (present simple) - ate (past simple)

has eaten (present perfect)

EXAMPLE
1) Last week Mary went to New York. This sentence describes exactly when Mary went to
New York (last week) and uses the past simple form of the verb go.
2) Mary has been to New York. This sentence is about the past also, but we do not know
when Mary went to New York. We only know that she went to New York in the past.
Has been is the present perfect singular form of the verb be.
3) Brian called me Monday. Another action that happened at a specific time (Monday).
Called is the past simple form of the verb call.
4) My mother has lived in New York for six years. This is an action that started in the past,
and continued to the present. My mother lives in New York right now! Has lived is the
present perfect form of live.
5) My mother lived in New York for six years. This is an action that started AND finished
in the past. In this sentence, my mother does not live in New York anymore. This sentence
is different from sentence #4. lived is the past simple form of the verb live.
Choose the correct verb form to complete the sentences below.

7 weeks ago I (saw, have seen) that movie with Tom Cruise.
Her cousin (ate, has eaten) in McDonalds twice this year.
This morning Kelly and Darnell (have taken, took) the bus to school.
Kelly and Darnell (have taken, took) the bus to school 4 times this week.
We (drove, have driven) to the movies last Thursday.
Nobody (lived, has lived) in that house for 12 years.
The children (broke, have broken) that window 3 times this year.
The children (broke, have broken) that window 3 times last year.

Answer the questions below using either the present perfect or the past simple.
1

How many times have you been to the movies this year?

What was the last movie you saw? When did you see it?

What did you eat for breakfast this morning?

What is the most exciting thing you have done this year? What is the most boring thing
you have done this year?