The most important word in a sentence is the verb. In fact, every sentence must have at least one verb. An English verb can exist in several different forms. For example, it can be in its infinitive or –ing form. It can also be in the simple past or past participle form. We make different tenses by making changes to the form of the verb. And hence it is important that students can recognize the different verb forms associated with the different tenses.


Point out the verbs in the following sentences and name their tenses.

1. The birds fly in the sky.

2. I am hoping to get a raise soon.

3. I received the letter yesterday.

4. It has been raining since yesterday.

5. We have heard a strange story.

6. The boys, all of whom had seen the chameleon, could not agree about its color.

7. I wish my brother were here.

8. I will have plenty of time tomorrow.

9. The patient had died before the doctor arrived.

10. The boy is waiting at the gate.


1. Verb – fly; tense – simple present

2. Verb – am hoping; tense – present continuous

3. Verb – received; tense – simple past

4. Verb – has been raining; tense – present perfect continuous tense

5. Verb – have heard; tense – present perfect

6. Verb – had seen; tense – past perfect; verb – could not agree; tense – simple past

7. Verb – wish; tense – simple present; Verb – were; tense – simple past

8. Verb – will have; tense – future perfect

9. Verb – had died; tense – past perfect; verb – arrived; tense – simple past

10. Verb – is waiting; tense – present continuous