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GRAMMAR: Present perfect vs past simple (Pre-intermediate B1)

We use the present perfect to talk about past experiences.
The present perfect refers to the whole past, not a particular time .

Present Perfect vs Past Simple

Listen and read.

 I / You / We / They have+ past participleHe / She / It
has+ past participle
+I've given a stranger a lift.He's given a stranger a lift.
-We haven't done any charity work.He hasn't done any charity work
Y/N?Have you ever helped a stranger?
Yes, I have. / No, I haven't.
Has she ever helped a stranger?
Yes, she has. / No, she hasn't.

Regular past participles end in -ed, e.g. I have worked
Many past participles are irregular, e.g. I have bought

The past simple and the past participle are often different, e.g. I drove; I have driven.

Tip
The verb go in the present perfect
We use been instead of gone for a past experience:
I’ve been to China. (= I went there and came back home.)
We use gone to say where other people are now:
She’s gone to China. (= She’s there now.)

We often use ever and never with the present perfect to talk about our whole life experience. Ever and never come before the past participle in the sentence.
We can also use once / twice I three times etc. at the end of a
sentence to say how many times we have had an experience.

Present perfect for experiences in general

A I’ve never visited the UK. Have you ver been there?
B Yes, I have. I’ve been there three times.

When we ask or talk about specific past times we use the past simple.

Past simple for specific events

A When was the last time you went?
B Two years ago. I rented a car and drove to Scotland.

Let’s practice:

Write a few questions in the present perfect and past simple in the comments area below.

September 17, 2019

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