Grammar Is Easy: Present Continuous

June 8, 2017 - Priscila Pereira

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Hey guys, how are you today?

Here is another grammar post. Let’s talk about present continuous, shall we? Before I start explaining I want you to look at the picture below and tell me what you see, ok?

I see a woman. This woman is doing something. She is taking a picture.

Action = taking a Picture

Is the action “finished”? = no, the action is in “progress”




Now, look at another picture:

In this picture the girl is drinking  coffee.


Action = drinking coffee

Is the action “finished”? = no, the action is in “progress”




How about another picture:

In this picture the girl  is reading a book.


Action = reading a book

Is the action “finished”? = no, the action is in “progress





The number ONE lesson you need to learn about Present Continuous is that the activity you describe is well, in THE PRESENT and in PROGRESS. It is not finished.

Now, the second thing you need to know is: the structure.  What do you need to write?

You need a pronoun/person/object, verb to be and another verb +ING + complements


I – YOU – HE – SHE – IT – WE – YOU – THEY

Person: you don’t need to use only pronouns because you can also use names of people and things. For example Jessica is reading OR She is reading. Snoopy is eating OR the dog is eating. Ok?

Object = the table, the window, the car are some examples of objects.

Verb to be

 You need VERB TO BE in present continuous sentences. Do you remember the conjugations?

Verbs and complements

Here you will also need verbs. In this case, think about actions, things people do all the time. In addition to verbs, complements are words you need to complete the idea of the verb. Sometimes you need them, sometimes you don’t. Here is a quick simple list of 10 popular verbs we use all the time,  plus their possible complements.


Talk on the phone
Take a shower
Eat breakfast
Read a book/magazine
Listen to music
Watch a movie
Do homework
Clean the house
Open the window
play soccer


Now that you know the structure of the present continuous we need to talk about how we put these words together in order to make real life examples, which is why I gave you  10 verbs and complements, to help you make sentences!

Look at some examples:

  He is talking on the phone.

Pronoun = he

Verb to be = is

Action = talk

Complement = on the phone

This is an affirmative sentence to describe what is “happening”, “in progress” in the picture.

   Clark is taking a shower

Pronoun = Clark. I used a name, you can do this, no problems

Verb to be = is

Action =take

Complement = a shower

This is an affirmative sentence to describe what is “happening”, “in progress” in the picture.


   He is eating breakfast

Pronoun = he

Verb to be = is

Action =eat

Complement = breakfast


There are many different kinds of questions you can ask with Present Continuous. A very popular question is to ask “what”. Look at the example below:

   What is the boy doing? The boy (or he) is reading a book.

In this case I don’t know what the person is doing, I’m asking someone to tell me.

You can also ask a yes or no question. Check it out:

  Is he sleeping? No, he isn’t. He is listening to music.

In this case I asked if the boy in the picture was “sleeping” (zZzzZ). As you can see, he is not sleeping. He is listening to music. Let’s see another example:

   Are the kids playing video game? No, they aren’t. They are watching a movie.

Other situations

Sometimes you can use present continuous for different kinds of situations, so today I’m going to show you one of them.

To talk about things that are in PROGRESS, but not really happening at the moment the person is speaking.

For example, you call a friend and you want to tell this friend about a book that you are  reading.  Probably, at the moment you tell your friend about this book, you are not going to be reading the book. But that’s an activity that is in progress. It means you are in the middle of reading it.

Now, how about some exercises?

  1. Answer the questions below. Use the words in ( ) to help you answer:
  2. What is she doing? (cook)
  3. What are the boys doing? (jump)
  4. What is the teacher doing? (read)
  5. What are the birds doing? (sing)
  6. Is she playing the violin? (the guitar)
  7. is he cooking? (no, eat)
  8. Are the dogs running? (no, bark)
  9. Is the girl sleeping? (no, watch tv)
  10. Is he opening the door? (no, close)
  11. Are they talking to Alice? (no, to Andrea)
  12. What is the cat doing (drink milk)
  13. What is John doing (talk on the phone)
  14. What is Kate doing? (text her friend)


  1. Look at the picture. What are they doing? Write 9 sentences.


Do you have any questions? Leave your questions in the comments.

Share this post with your friends! And if you have questions, let me know!

Thanks guys

Teacher Prix

Priscila Pereira

Starbucks and TV Series lover: juggling with teaching, blogging, and a YouTube life! I’m teacher Prix and I want to help you talk to anyone, anywhere, anytime in English! This blog is for English speakers who are looking for an effective blog. Get inspired by hundreds of different posts for all English levels, so that you can finally learn English easily and effectively on the internet.

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