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Simple for Always, Continuous for Now

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When should we use the present simple and the present continuous tenses?

Present Simple

Use the present simple tense for actions that are habitual or repeating. When we talk about something we always do, we use this tense.

Elena loves English.
I read English books every evening.
I go to English class on Tuesday.

Present Continuous

Use the present continuous (present progressive) for anything that is happening right now at this moment.
To form the present continuous use am, are and is with the -ing form of the verb (present participle).

I am waiting for a bus.
She is talking on the phone.
They are all playing baseball in the park.

You can use these time expressions with this tense:

Now - I’m watching TV now.
At the moment - I’m reading a good book at the moment.
These days - It’s snowing a lot these days.
Today - I’m working from home today.

Now decide which tense is needed in these sentences:

  • 1 - She usually drives to work, but today she is ___ her bike.

  • 2 - I ___ for a way to solve this problem at the moment.

  • 3 - I try to ___ English whenever I go abroad.

  • 4 - We are not ___ breakfast now.

  • 5 - He has a microwave but he never __ it.

  • 6 - What time do you usually ___ up?

  • 7 - She ___ her car on the weekend.

  • 8 - What are you ___?

  • 9 - She ___ to become a pilot.

  • 10 - I hardly ever ___ letters anymore.