Regular verbs form their past tense by adding ed. Irregular verbs have a past tense form that you must learn individually. Remember, too, that the continuous aspect of the past tense is marked by the auxiliary verb be plus the ing form of a verb. If you see the verb be followed by an ing form, it’s the continuous aspect. Verb to be plus ing! is really all you need to know to identify the continuous aspect. So, if had plus a past participle gives us the perfect aspect, and be +ing gives us the continuous aspect, then together we get the past tense, perfect continuous aspect. I had been teaching in schools for 5 years before I decided to teach exclusively online using Skype. While it is easy to name the aspects and the tenses, what is less clear is how, when, and where we should use the past perfect continuous. In this Grammar Activation Pack we will look at the past tense, perfect continuous aspect. The past tense tells us about things which happened in the past. The perfect aspect uses a past participle, and this also talks about the past. The continuous aspect talks about something happening over a period of time; in this case from an earlier time in the past to another later time in the past. Like the past perfect, the past perfect continuous talks about an earlier past in a later past. Let’s look at some examples of usage to see what this means. Grammar Activation Pack 11 – Past Perfect Continuous.
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