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.

Use

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:

Exercise

Section: 

Comments

Be going to and will
What's the difference?

Thank you sir.

Hello sir, do both the sentences mean the same and are correct?
1. Due to this flood the mud houses are broken and also the road is damaged.
2. Due to this flood the mud houses have been broken and also the road has been damaged.
Depending on sense can PRESENT SIMPLE and PRESENT PERFECT be used interchangeably?

Hello amrita,

'break' is an ergative verb so both 1 and 2 are correct. 1 is probably more common unless you want to make it clear that someone broke the houses.

If you're reporting something that has happened recently, i.e. as a news item, the present perfect would be better.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello sir, do both the sentences mean the same and are correct?
1. Due to this flood the mud houses ARE broken and also the road IS damaged.
2. Due to this flood the mud houses have been broken and also the road has been damaged.
Depending on sense can PRESENT SIMPLE and PRESENT PERFECT be used interchangeably?
Sir, in the sentence 1 above I think both 'are' and 'is'
should have been replaced with 'were' and 'was' respectively. please enlighten me.
thank you.

Hello pamella,

In this sentence, the present simple, past simple and present perfect tenses are all possible. The present simple would be a bit unusual, so I'd recommend either past simple or present perfect.

The present perfect could indicate, for example, that you are reporting some recent news. The past simple can also report news, but lends a bit less focus on it as something new.

I'd recommend reading our talking about the past page for more clarification on this, but please don't hesitate to ask us again if it's still not clear after that.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you so much sir.

Hi Peter
I have a question for you about 3rd person tense. My teacher taught us he, she, it, name = verb+s e.g. he talks.
But when I search online or other grammar books, they never mention 'name' as in The Purple Team plays well or The Chen Family wins. Is my teacher wrong? If not, why isn't this rule explained more?

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