What is Present Continuous Tense?

Written By MobileLearners



Find out how Present Continuous Tense is used to form basic sentences.

What is Present Continuous Tense?

It is a verb tense that describes an action that is taking place right now. It is also used to describe an action that will be taking place in the near future.



1. Describing an ongoing action

We use “am”, “is” or “are” to then tie in with words ending with “ing”. Here’s an example to show how Present Continuous Tense is used:


“Sharon is sleeping in her room.”

In this case, “Sharon” is a singular subject, so “is sleeping” will be used to describe the activity taking place at that time.


“The boys are playing soccer now.”

For this sentence, “boys” refer to a plural subject, so “are playing” will be used to describe the activity taking place at that time.



2. Describing an action that is in progress now

Also, you can use Present Continuous Tense to describe something that is being done over a longer period of time. Let’s take a look at an example:


“I am studying to become a chef.”

In this case, the subject is in the process of studying to become a chef in the future. This activity is done for a longer period than the previous example of “sleeping”.



How do we use Present Continuous Tense when asking a question?

Did you know that you can use Present Continuous Tense when asking a question? Let’s try with the following examples:


“What is Jamie doing?”

In this case, the singular subject “Jamie” is being asked what she is doing right now.


“Are you eating?”

As for this question, the subject is being asked if he or she is eating right now.


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