Common errors in the use of verbs

In this lesson we will take a closer look at some common mistakes in the use of verbs.

Incorrect: He is waiting for you from 10 o’clock.
Correct: He has been waiting for you since 10 o’clock.

Incorrect: This man is sitting here for the last two hours.
Correct: This man has been sitting here for the last two hours.

Incorrect: We are staying here since 1980.
Correct: We have been staying here since 1980.


To talk about actions and situations that started in the past and have continued up to the present, we use the present perfect continuous tense.

Incorrect: I am going to school by bus.
Correct: I go to school by us.

Incorrect: We are playing tennis every day.
Correct: We play tennis every day.


We use the simple present tense to talk about routines and habits. Note that the present continuous tense is used to talk about actions and situations that are going on at the moment of speaking.

Incorrect: I said him to go.
Correct: I told him to go.

Incorrect: She told that she would be coming.
Correct: She said that she would be coming.


We use tell with a personal object. We use said when there is no personal object.

Incorrect: They discussed about the whole matter.
Correct: They discussed the whole matter.


Discuss is one of those verbs that are not followed by a preposition.