Britlish

Present Perfect - GA6

Aspect and Tenses Course Grammar

Grammar

These Activities focus on the grammar of English. English grammar compared to other grammars is quite simple, but in its simplicity lies its complexity. The Activities here cover all aspects of English grammar from the aspects and tenses to sentence structures. English grammar covers the structure of words, phrases, clauses, sentences, and entire texts. There are eight parts of speech in English: nouns, determiners, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, and conjunctions. The largest of these parts of speech are the nouns which, unlike most European languages, do not have grammatical gender. English grammar has largely done away with the inflectional case system of other European languages and bases its grammar on analytic constructions. The Activities in this category will go some way to helping you get a better understanding of English grammar.    

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I explained about the Key Verbs, be, do, and have and their inflected tenses in Grammar Activation Pack 1. I have looked at the simple and continuous aspects, both present and past tense in Grammar Activation Packs 2 to 5. In this Grammar Activation Pack, I am going to tell you how the third of the key verbs, have, is used for the perfect aspect, present tense. When a form of the verb have is not followed by a past participle it is acting as a main verb, not an auxiliary verb and the perfect aspect is not formed. We only have the perfect aspect if one of the inflected forms of have comes before a past participle. This British English grammar is essential for all students of English and the many exercises in the pack will help you master it quickly and enjoyably.

Aspect and Tenses Course

Present Perfect

Grammar Activation Pack 6

Key Verbs, Aspects, and Tenses

I explained about the Key Verbs, be, do, and have and their inflected tenses in Grammar Activation Pack 1.

I have looked at the simple and continuous aspects, both present and past tense in Grammar Activation Packs 2 to 5.

In this Grammar Activation Pack, I am going to tell you how the third of the key verbs, have, is used for the perfect aspect, present tense.

Present Tense Have

The present tense is shown by the two inflected present forms of the verb have, have, and has, and these are used for different subjects.

Have is used with:

First person singular – I have.

First person plural – We have.

Second person singular and plural – You have.

Third person plural – They have.

has is used with:

The gender specific, third person, singular subject pronouns – He has, and She has.

The gender neutral, third person, singular subject pronoun – It has.

Finite or Non-Finite Verbs

A finite verb has a subject and can function as the root of an independent clause.

An independent clause is basically a full sentence and expresses a single thought.

The finite present tense forms of have are have, and has.

Non-finite verbs are the infinitives, the participles, and the gerunds.

The non-finite forms of have are have, had, and having.

I’ll look in detail at finite and non-finite verbs in later Grammar Activation Packs.

Perfect Aspect

Perfect means finished.

The perfect aspect is marked by the auxiliary verb have plus the past participle form of a non-finite verb.

There are 2 finite inflected present tense forms of the verb have: have and has.

In this Grammar Activation Pack, I will be looking at the present tense, perfect aspect, marked by the inflected present tense forms of have, have and has.

Past Participles

Regular verbs form the past participle by adding ed.

Irregular verbs have a past participle form that you must learn individually.

To help you learn them, I have created an Irregular Verb Activator with all of the most common irregular English verbs and their past participle forms.

You will find the Irregular Verb Activator on the next page.

Present Tense, Perfect Aspect

When a form of the verb have is not followed by a past participle it is acting as a main verb, not an auxiliary verb and the perfect aspect is not formed.

We only have the perfect aspect if one of the inflected forms of have comes before a past participle:

I have taught.

We have learnt.

You have learnt.

They have learnt.

He has learnt.

She has learnt.

It has learnt.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

Affirmative Contractions

When we speak, we usually use contractions.

When written, a contraction uses an apostrophe to show that some letters are missing.

I’ve taught.

We’ve learnt.

You’ve learnt.

They’ve learnt.

He’s learnt.

She’s learnt.

It’s learnt.

The apostrophe in ’ve and ’s marks the missing letters ha.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

Present Perfect Closed Questions

Let’s take a look at the previous statements turned into present perfect closed questions.

Have I taught?

Have we learnt?

Have you learnt?

Have they learnt?

Has he learnt?

Has she learnt?

Has it learnt?

You can’t use contractions in questions.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

5WH Questions

Let’s take a look at some examples of past tense, perfect aspect questions using the 5WH question words.

Why have I taught?

When have we learnt?

Where have you learnt?

How have they learnt?

What has he learnt?

Why has she learnt?

How has it learnt?

These open or 5WH questions get you more than the yes or no response of closed questions.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

5WH Subject Questions

Present tense, perfect aspect subject questions replace the subject of the sentence with the question word who or, if the subject is not a person, what.

Who has taught?

Richard has taught.

What has learnt?

The machine has learnt.

Who have learnt?

My students have learnt.

What have learnt?

The machines have learnt.

The question words, who or what, give us the subject of the sentence.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

Present Perfect Negative

Let’s take a look at some examples of present tense, perfect aspect, negative sentences.

I have not taught.

We have not learnt.

You have not learnt.

They have not learnt.

He has not learnt.

She has not learnt.

It has not learnt.

Negative sentences are very easy to form as you just have to put a not after the auxiliary have.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

Negative Contractions

Contractions are often used in spoken English.

When written, a contraction uses an apostrophe to show that some letters are missing.

I haven’t taught.

We haven’t learnt.

You haven’t learnt.

They haven’t learnt.

He hasn’t learnt.

She hasn’t learnt.

It hasn’t learnt.

The apostrophe in n’t marks the missing letter O.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

Negative Contractions

We can also contract the present tense, perfect aspect negative thus:

I’ve not taught.

We’ve not learnt.

You’ve not learnt.

They’ve not learnt.

He’s not learnt.

She’s not learnt.

It’s not learnt.

The apostrophe in ’s and ’ve marks the missing letters ha.

The perfect aspect = have plus past participle.

Uses

Perfect means finished.

The tense of a sentence is marked by an inflected form of have. For the perfect aspect, the verb have always comes before a past participle form of a non-finite verb.

I have taught.

You have learnt.

She has learnt.

The have plus past participle tells us that this is the perfect aspect, the aspect that shows a finished action.

The tense of have is present and is shown by one of the two present tense inflected forms of have; have and has.

Therefore, this action was finished in the present and we call this the present perfect.

Past Continuous vs Past Simple

Do you remember that Captain Britlish was doing Kung Fu when he twisted his knee?
(past continuous – past simple with hidden do [did twist])

The past simple tells us only that something happened in the past.

There is no connection to the present and it does not tell us if Captain Britlish still has a twisted knee.

Present Perfect Now

The present perfect connects the past with the present.

Why is Captain Britlish limping?

Because he has twisted his knee.

The finished event in the past has a direct effect on the present.

The events in the past must be recent enough to have an effect on the present.

The present perfect tells us that Captain Britlish still has a twisted knee.

Grammar Activator

The best way to activate what you have just learnt is to do some exercises where I can ask you some questions and tell you whether you are right or wrong.

You can do this in the Grammar Activator which is available on the next page.

Just click the Start Quiz button to begin.

You will be asked some random questions from a bank of questions.

Each time you complete the Grammar Activator you can refresh your browser and a new set of questions will be created for you.

Aspect and Tenses

A comprehensive English course covering the tenses and aspects of English in an easy-to-understand format with lots of self-test exercises to check your understanding. You will learn all you need to know about the 3 Key Verbs of English: Be, Do, Have. This course will let you see just how simple English grammar is. We will explore the present simple, the past simple, the present continuous, the post continuous, the present perfect and the present perfect past and present, along with present perfect time markers, the present perfect continuous, the past perfect and the past perfect continuous.

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Present Perfect Continuous - GA9

The perfect aspect of the present tense is marked by the auxiliary verb have plus the past participle. Remember that the tenses are shown by the auxiliary verbs, be, do, and have. If we have the present tense of have followed by a past participle, we have present perfect. So, if have plus a past participle gives us the perfect aspect, and be +ing gives us the continuous aspect, then together we should get the perfect continuous aspect. Well, it’s easy enough to name the aspects and the tenses, but you may be wondering how, when, and where we should use the perfect continuous aspect. In this Grammar Activation Pack we will look at the present tense, perfect continuous aspect. The very name of the structure tells us a lot about it. The present tense tells us there is a connection with the present, that is, now. The perfect aspect uses the past participle which shows a connection to the past. The continuous aspect talks about something happening over a period of time; in this case from a time in the past to the present. This British English grammar is essential for all students of English and the many exercises in the pack will help you master it quickly and enjoyably.    

Categories: Grammar


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Present Perfect Past - Present - GA7

We can talk about finished actions using both the present perfect and the past simple. It’s logical that anything which is finished must be in the past. What the present perfect does that the past simple cannot do is to form a connection between the past finished action and the present. We can only use a finished time expression like last week with the past simple. In this Grammar Activation Pack, I want to focus on how the present perfect connects events in the past with the present. As I said, logically anything that is finished must have happened in the past. The present perfect uses the present tense of the finite verb have, which as you know is have or has, and the past participle of a non-finite verb. It is this combination of the present and the past that gives us our biggest clue as to how the perfect aspect and the present tense work together. This British English grammar is essential for all students of English and the many exercises in the pack will help you master it quickly and enjoyably.

Categories: Grammar


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Present Perfect Time Markers - GA8

English uses time markers to accurately say when something happened or happens. Yesterday, last week, last month, last year, and many more expressions tell us the when of an action. We cannot use the above finished time markers with the present perfect because they show finished periods of time. We use these time markers with the past simple. We cannot use finished time markers like yesterday, and last year with the present perfect, but there are 4 time markers that we can use. Allow me to explain how we can use these time markers with the present perfect. This British English grammar is essential for all students of English and the many exercises in the pack will help you master it quickly and enjoyably.    

Categories: Grammar


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