December 25th, 2013 in English Learning
Tenses cause a great deal of confusion for ESL students. While writing sentences, make sure that the tenses correspond to the situation. So, for example, is you are speaking about something that happened in the past, do not use a tense that refers to the present.
Study the examples given below.
Incorrect: I visit my parents last week.
Here the time expression last week clearly indicates that the action took place in the past and hence we need a past tense here.
Correct: I visited my parents last week.
Another example is given below.
Incorrect: I visited my parents next week.
Here the time expression next week indicates that the action is yet to take place in the future. It is therefore wrong to use a verb in the past tense.
Correct: I will visit my parents next week. (Use this form if the decision was taken at the moment of speaking.)
Correct: I am visiting my parents next week. (Use this form if you have already made the plan.)
Correct: I am going to visit my parents next week. (Use this form to show your intention.)
The tense in the main clause often determines the tense in the subordinate clause.
If the tense in the main clause is in the past tense, you will probably need past tenses in the subordinate clauses as well.
Incorrect: Janaki opened the book and start reading.
Correct: Janaki opened the books and started reading.