The present tense is the base form of the verb: I work in London.
But the third person (she/he/it) adds an -s: She works in London.


We use the present tense to talk about:

  • something that is true in the present:

I’m nineteen years old.
He lives in London.
I’m a student.

  • something that happens again and again in the present:

I play football every weekend.

We use words like sometimes, often. always, and never (adverbs of frequency) with the present tense:

I sometimes go to the cinema.
She never plays football.

  • something that is always true:

The adult human body contains 206 bones.
Light travels at almost 300,000 kilometres per second.


  • something that is fixed in the future.

The school term starts next week.
The train leaves at 1945 this evening.
We fly to Paris next week.


Questions and negatives

Look at these questions:

Do you play the piano?
Where do you live?
Does Jack play football?
Where does he come from?
Do Rita and Angela live in Manchester?
Where do they work?

  • With the present tense, we use do and does to make questions. We use does for the third person (she/he/it) and we use do for the others.


 We use do and does with question words like where, what and why:


 But look at these questions with who:

Who lives in London?
Who plays football at the weekend?
Who works at Liverpool City Hospital?

Look at these sentences:

I like tennis, but I don’t like football. (don’t = do not)
I don’t live in London now.
I don’t play the piano, but I play the guitar.
They don’t work at the weekend.
John doesn’t live in Manchester. (doesn’t = does not)
Angela doesn’t drive to work. She goes by bus.

  • With the present tense we use do and does to make negatives. We use does not (doesn’t) for the third person (she/he/it) and we use do not (don’t) for the others.

Complete these sentences with don’t or doesn’t:




Hello Tim,

We use the -s ending in the present simple for the third-person, as you say. In your example the word 'bless' is not present simple but rather is the base form (infinitive without to) as it follows a modal auxiliary verb ('may'). Modal auxiliaries are not followed by present simple forms, which is why we say 'I may be late' not 'I may am late'.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

hello sir
present simple is used for general facts or truths so if i say "I know him for a long time" i have mentioned time but it is a fact is it correct to state facts with time or i have to say that "I have known him for a long time"

Hello aseel aftab,

The present perfect is needed here if you have an unfinished time reference like 'for a long time'. We would use the present simple without any time reference (making it a general and timeless statement) so you can say either of the following:

I know him.

I've known him for a long time.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi, do you give any certificate? i know it is not a question to ask here, but i checked your FQ i did not get an answer

Hi Tim,

LearnEnglish itself is not a course but rather a collection of self-study materials which we provide free of charge for our users and so we do not provide certificates. The British council provides certificates for students who complete a British Council course. To learn more about the British Council in your country you can visit this page. You can also take an external examination such as IELTS to gain certification if this is needed or helpful for you in terms of your career or further studies.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi, is there any difference between this two sentences: Is Gideon coming with us?, Does Gideon coming with us? what is the best sentence and why

Hello Tim,

The first sentence is fine and asks about a particular trip. The second sentence, however, is incorrect. You could ask 'Does Gideon come with us?' and this would be a question not about one time but about what is normal or typical.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter,

To ask a questions in simple present tense to a third person (She/He/It) we use Does.

We also add -S to the base verb when we refer to third person (She/He/It)

Now based on the above mentioned two rules i have question to you, which is:

Why have you not added the -S to base verb come?

"Does Gideon Comes with us?"

Hi nitinsharma,

We add -s to the base form with the third person, as you say, but on in affirmative sentences. In questions and negatives it is the auxiliary which is marked for third person:

Gideon comes with us. (affirmative)

Does Gideon come with us. (question)

Gideon doesn't come with us. (negative)

Only one part of the verb form is marked for third person. In affirmative sentences it is the main verb and in questions and negatives it is the auxiliary verb.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter, thanks for your helpful answers and i really appreciate. since i started to learn your courses i am improving in my English. Now, i am a bit confused, because i studied the present simple, you said we use do and does to ask questions but what make the first sentence correct? Is Gideon coming with us? why we use is and not does?