Thursday, May 31, 2007

Examples of Past Perfect Tense

I’d like to provide some examples of Past Tense verb usages.

Most of my advanced ESL students avoid using the Past Perfect, although they have studied it and could use it if pressed to do so. ESL and EFL learners don’t have the opportunity to practice the tense and since they don’t have to use it, they will often avoid it. They will often use the Simple Past instead.

Here are some examples of the Past Perfect tense:

He had been at the party for an hour before I got there.

She had enjoyed the movie before some noisy people sat down.

They had studied the Past Perfect tenses before moving onto the Past Perfect Progressive.

We had already eaten by the time she arrived.

You'll notice that all of these sentences could be rewritten using only the Simple Past. This is what my ESL students tend to do, so I try to reinforce the usage of the Past Perfect whenever possible.

More info on Past Perfect lesson plans.


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