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The PAST CONTINUOUS puts emphasis on the course of an action in the past.

Form


Positive
Negative
Question
I / he / she / it
I was speaking.
I was not speaking.
Was I speaking?
you / we / they
You were speaking.
You were not speaking.
Were you speaking?

Exceptions in Spelling

Exceptions in spelling when adding ing
Example
final e is dropped (but: ee is not changed)
come – coming
(but: agree – agreeing)

after a short, stressed vowel, the final consonant is doubled
sit – sitting
l as final consonant after a vowel is doubled (in British English)
travel – travelling
final ie becomes y
lie – lying

Use of PAST CONTINUOUS

  • puts emphasis on the course of an action in the past
Example: He was playing football.
  • two actions happening at the same time (in the past)
Example: While she was preparing dinner, he was washing the dishes.
  • action going on at a certain time in the past
Example: When I was having breakfast, the phone suddenly rang
Past progressive (explanation).

Signal Words of Past Continuous

  • when, while, as long as

Exercises on Past Continuous


Exercise 1.
Exercise 2.
Exercise 3.
Exercise 4: simple past or past progressive. .

Exercise 5: simple past or past progressive.

Tests