Course Specials

Contact Information

United Business Languages
Pge. Santa Catalina de Sena 2, 3º A
07002 Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Mobile: +34 634 015 210

Phone: +34 871 020 292


Social Networks

Hair & Beauty


Grammar:  5.4. The Present Continuous


Table of contents

1. The subject

2. The auxiliary be

3. The present participle (verb + -ing)

4. The positive sentence

5. The negative sentence

6. The closed-ended question (YES/NO question)

7. The open-ended question (for more information)

8. Wh-question words

9. Key words (time markers)

10. The use of the present continuous tense

11. Non-action verbs (state verbs)

12. Glossary


Always do your best. What you

plant now, you will harvest later.

- Og Mandino

Unit:  1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8    9


1. The subject

The subject of a sentence is a person or thing that performs the action of the verb. Most English sentences must have a subject.

The subject can be either a noun or pronoun. Subject pronouns are used to replace the noun of a person or thing.



I go shopping every week.

You hardly ever eat fruit.

He runs very fast.

She loves going out.

It tastes delicious.

We play football once a week.

You sing my favorite song.

They always win the game.


2. Auxiliary verbs be

The verb to be is not only used as a main verb but also as an auxiliary verb The auxiliary verb “be” helps to form the continuous tenses.


to be

The forms of the verb to be are:


To infinitive:

Base infinitive:

Present simple:

Past simple:

Past participle:

Present participle:


to be


am, is, are

was, were






The verb to be can be used as a main verb or as an auxiliary verb.

  • He is studying English (Present continuous).
  • She often is lonely. (Present simple).


3. The positive sentence

Positive continuous tenses have an auxiliary verb “be” in positive sentences.


Word order:



I am studying English right now.

You are cutting my hair today.

He is running very fast.

She is swimming in the pool.

It is working just fine.

We are dancing in the street.

You are doing her hair this week.

They are having breakfast together.


4. The present participle (verb + -ing)

The construction verb + -ing can be used as a noun (gerund) or a present participle (main verb in the sentence).



He likes going out. (Present simple – gerund)

They are going out every day.


Spelling rules for the –ing form



Verb + -ing




add -ing



consonant + y (no changes) + -ing



eliminate the last -e, add -ing



one vowel and one consonant = double consonant + -ing



5. The negative sentence

When we want to say that something is not true or is not the case, we can use negative words, phrases or clauses. Negation can happen in a number of ways, most commonly, when we use a negative word such as no, not, never, none, nobody, etc.

      We form negative statements with not or n’t after the auxiliary verb do / does in present simple.

  •       is the contracted form of not.


Word order


Versión para imprimir Versión para imprimir | Mapa del sitio
© Copyright 2015 United Business Languages - All rights reserved worldwide