Present Continuous

  • subject + am/is/are + verb + ing
    Example: She is working in Dubai.
  • subject + am/is/are not + verb + ing
    Example: I am not working in Dubai.
  • am/is/are + subject + verb + ing?
    Example: Are you working in Dubai?

The principal uses of the present continuous are listed below.

  • To describe actions happening at the exact moment of speech:
    • The boy is crying.
  • To refer to temporary situations:
    • I'm living in London at the moment. (I don't normally live here)
    • My cousin is working in a restaurant until she finds a job in her field.
    • The present continuous is often used with: now, at the moment, today, this morning/afternoon/evening/week/month/year, currently
  • To refer to tendencies and trends:
    • The world's population is increasing rapidly.
    • Google is making it easier for people to find, rate and share information about local businesses.
  • To express irritation, anger or envy:
    • She's always losing her gloves! (complaint)
    • He's always travelling around the world! (envy)
    • The following adverbs are often used: always, constantly, forever
  • To use with state verbs when the meaning is temporary.
    • I'm thinking of buying a new car. (trying to reach a decision)
    • I think you should buy a new car. (my opinion, so not temporary)
    • He is tasting the wine they have brought him. (activity)
    • The wine tastes sweet rather than sour. (sense)
    • I was having a bath when the phone rang. (activity, not possession)
    • The room has a private bathroom with a tub and shower. (possession)

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