2 When do we use the present perfect? We use the present perfect to express an action or state that happened at an indefinite time in the past.I’ve read that book. It’s fascinating.*I’ve read that book a week ago.The action or state may occur only once or may be repeated several times.This is the second time Sara has lost her passport.Adverbs used with indefinite past time: already, yet, still, so far, ever, neverWe’ve already done our homework.They still haven’t finished their exams.They haven’t found the answers yet.So far, I’ve visited 16 countries.Have you ever taken an English course?I’ve read a few English grammar books, but I’ve never actually taken a course.
3 When do we use the present perfect? We use the present perfect to express an action or state that began in the past and continuous at the present time.These sentences often have expressions such as for, since, or allI haven’t seen Sara for three days.We have known each other since we were in high school. (from high school until now)I haven’t eaten anything since breakfast.My mother has lived here all her life.
4 When do we use the present perfect? We use the present perfect to express a recent past actions or experiences, especially when their results are important in the present. Adverbs like lately, recently, in the last few days, or just emphasize this meaning of recent past timeConversationsA: Are you hungry? B: No, I’ve just had lunch.A: Where has your sister been lately?B: She hasn’t been home very much recently. She is busy looking for a job.
5 The present perfect Form PositiveFull form short formI/you/we/they have arrived I’ve arrivedHe/she/it has arrived he’s arrivedNegativeI/you/we/they have arrived haven’t arrivedHe/she/it has arrived hasn’t arrivedQuestionsHave I/you/we/they arrived?Has he/she/it arrived?
6 Contrasting the present perfect and the simple past Continuing time up to now vs. completed actionsPresent Perfect Simple PastShe’s been lucky all her life. She was lucky all her life.(She is still alive) (She is no longer alive)The simple past can be used to talk about historical events, whereas the present perfect cannot.*Bell has invented the telephone. Bell invented the telephone over 100 years ago.Indefinite past time vs. Definite past timePresent Perfect(indefinite past time) Past Simple(definite past time)Have you visited your parents lately? Did you visit your parents last weekend?
7 Choosing the simple past or the present perfect Choose the simple past or present perfect forms that best complete the conversation.Jeff: How long (have you had / did you have) this computer?Kim: Let’s see. (I’ve bought / I bought) it when (I’ve moved / I moved) here, so (I’ve owned / I owned) it for a long time.Jeff: Well, (I’ve had / I had) mine for two years, and it already seems to be outdated. (It’s been / It was) very slow lately. Do you think it needs more memory?Kim: I don’t know. (Have you called / Did you call) Janet lately? She knows everything about this stuff. (She’s worked / She worked) for Computing World since (she’s graduated / she graduated).
8 Jeff: Well, actually, I have tried to reach her Jeff: Well, actually, I have tried to reach her. (I’ve phoned / I phoned) her last night, but (she was / she’s been) out for the evening.Kim: What about your roommate? (Hasn’t he taken / Didn’t he take) all kinds of engineering and computer courses last year?Jeff: Yeah, but he doesn’t know much about personal computing. Anyway, (he’s left / he left) town yesterday because his uncle (has died / died) suddenly on Monday. (He lived / He’s lived with his uncle for two years. They were very close.Kim: Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. Why don’t you call the Computer Center on campus? (They were / They have been) very helpful last week when I called them.Jeff: That’s a good idea.
9 The present perfect continuous Form Positive Full form Short formI/You/We/They have been cooking ’ve been cookingHe/She/It has been cooking ’s been cookingNegativeQuestionsHave I/you/we/they been cooking?Has he/she/it been cooking?
10 When do we use the present perfect continuous? We use the present perfect continuous to talk about repeated actions up to now.I have been playing tennis since I was in high school.For the past several years, they have been learning English.We use the present perfect continuous to talk about an action which ends just before the present.I’ve been swimming. That’s why my hair is wet.We use the present perfect continuous for an action over a period of time leading up to the present.I have been waiting here for thirty minutes.She hasn’t been feeling well recently.
11 Contrasting the present perfect continuos and the present perfect: (similar meanings) Certain common verbs can be used in the present perfect continuous with for or since with no difference in meaning. These verbs include live, teach, wear, work, study, stay, and feel.Present Perfect Present Perfect ContinuousHe’s taught English He’s been teaching Englishfor a long time for a long time.I have lived here for I have been living here for10 years years.
12 Contrasting the present perfect continuos and the present perfect: (different meanings) The meanings of the present perfect andthe present perfect continuous are notalways the same.Present Perfect Present perfect continuous_ to talk about past to emphasize the activityactivities that are now itself, which may or may not becompleted completed.We’ve repaired the car We have been repairing the car.That’s why our hands are dirty._ to ask and answer How _ to ask how long?Many? And How much?How many driving lessons How long have you been learninghave you had? to drive?I have been writing letters I have written ten letters today.all day.
13 Note that we cannot normally use the continuous form with a state verb. I’ve learned the secret for a long time.My mother has had the same mobile forabout 2 years.
14 Practice:Dear Ellen,How are you and how’s your family? Has your father been feeling (your father / feel) better? I hope so. I……………. …………(think) about you a lot and ……………… (wonder) if everything is ok.I……………….. (read) the novel that you sent me for my birthday. So far, I……………... (read) about a hundred pages, and I’m really enjoying it. I………………… (be) so busy lately I……………..……………. (not / have) much time to read, but I hope to finish it soon.Right now, I’m writing a paper for my psychology course. I …………………………. (write) it for two weeks. It’s going to be long. So far, I …………………… (change) the topic four times, but now I’m finally pleased with it.What ………………………… (you / do) during the past few weeks? …………………………… (you / work) hard? ……………………(you / have) any exams yet? I …………………….. (have) two so far, and I did pretty well on them.……………………….. (you / decide) what you’re going to do this summer? We really need to make plans soon! Please write!Love,Anne
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