English Daily Workout: When to Use the Past Simple Tense - Review

When to Use the Past Simple Tense - Review



.  The Past Simple Tense is used:

.   To describe finished events/states that took place at a specific time in the past. 
She got out of bed at 11 a.m. yesterday.

.  To be more polite
Did you  want to see me now?” sounds more polite than “Do you want to see me now?”

.  To emphasize WHEN a situation started even if it continues in the present.
I started swimming classes two months ago. (focus on WHEN a situation started in the past)

.  To describe how long a situation or event existed and which no longer takes place in the present
I travelled throughout Africa for six months.

.  To talk about events which took place regularly
We often saw her cat lying on the porch.
They went to the cinema most weekends.

.  To talk about habits or situations that existed for a period of time in the past.
When I was a child, I played tennis for the school team.

.  “Used to” and “Would” for past habits and states usually in contrast with the present.
I used to go walking every morning.
 I used to like pineapples.

.  “Would” describes a person’s typical activities in the past
At nights, Karen would have a shower, then she would drink a cup of tea, and only then would go to bed.

Note: The moment when the event took place must be established in the sentence by using a time adverb (last week, on Monday, etc.), must be made explicit earlier in the conversation/text, or must be assumed between hearer and speaker)


Past Tenses Review - Cloze Exercise