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Verb Tenses. To Think About Verb Tenses, Use a Time Line . We are stuck in the present. But, we can remember the past and think about the future. We do this with our inner eye. How Does It Work?. Think of this as your inner-eye. This is what we use to remember and to imagine with.

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verb tenses

Verb Tenses

To Think About Verb Tenses, Use a Time Line

Created by Howard Price

we are stuck in the present
We are stuck in the present.

But, we can remember the past and think about the future.

We do this with our inner eye.

how does it work
How Does It Work?

Think of this as your inner-eye. This is what we use to remember and to imagine with.

let s use the inner eye

The Past

The Present

The Future

Let’s use the inner-eye.

Thinking about the past.

Thinking about the future.

by using the inner eye let s now build a time line
By using the inner-eye, let’s now build a time line.

Past

Present

Future

am

baking

I am baking a pepperoni pizza.

What makes this action in the present tense?

let s think about yesterday

Past

Present

Future

Let’s think about yesterday.

Thinking about the past.

was

baking

Yesterday, I was baking a pepperoni pizza.

What makes this action in the past tense?

let s think about tomorrow

Past

Present

Future

be

baking

Let’s think about tomorrow.

Thinking about the future.

will

Tomorrow, I will be baking a pepperoni pizza.

What makes this action in the future tense?

what marks the past present and future

Past

Present

Future

was

baking

am

baking

will

be

baking

What Marks the Past, Present, and Future?

Notice that “baking” is in the past, present and future. It really has no tense. It is just a continuation of an action which is marked by the “ing”.

let s think about the near past

Past

Present

Future

Let’s think about the near past.

have

been

baking

Today, I have been baking pepperoni pizza.

What marks this action in the present tense?

What marks this action in the past tense?

Notice that “baking” is now in the past and in the present.

let s think about the past

Past

Present

Future

was

baking

Let’s think about the past.

Yesterday, I was baking pepperoni pizza.

What marks this action in the past?

let s think further into the past

Past/Past

Past

Present

Future

Let’s think further into the past.

day before

yesterday

had

been

baking

The day before yesterday, I had been baking pizza.

What marks the action as past?

What marks the action further into the past?

Notice “baking” is in the past and further in the past.

compare patterns

have

been

baking

Past

Past/Past

Present

Past

Present

Future

Future

had

been

baking

Compare Patterns.
think about the future as if it is the past

Past

Present

Future

Think about the future as if it is the past.

tomorrow

by 2

will

have

been

baking

By 2 o’clock tomorrow, I will have been baking pizza for two hours.

What marks the future?

What marks the past?

What marks the present?

Notice “baking” is in the future, present and past.

think about the past as if it is the future

Past

Present

Future

Think about the past as if it is the future.

yesterday

have

been

should

baking

Yesterday, I should have been baking pizza for the party.

What marks the past?

What marks the future?

What marks the present?

Notice that “baking” is in the past, present and future.