"Past" refers to any event that happened before the present time.

Past Time

A time in the past (General or specific)

The Simple Past

Use the simple past to express a state, event, or action at a specific time in the past or a general time in the past. You must use past participles when you use verbs in the simple past.

The Past Progressive

Use the past progressive to express an action that was in progress (not finished) at a time in the past.

Subject Was Base Form + Ing
Justin was considering marriage.

Past Time

A time in the past (indefinite)

The Present Perfect

Use the present perfect (have/has + past participle) to express a state, event, or action at an indefinite time in the past.

Have / Has Past Participle
How many of you have thought that this would be a wonderful idea?

Be careful! -> Don’t use the present perfect with a past time expression.

  • Correct: Justin got married several months ago.
  • Incorrect: Justin has gotten married several months ago.


Open the exercise to begin the activity. Follow the instructions in the document.