Past perfect tense.
The Past perfect is used to describe an action that occurred earlier in the past before another action that also occurred in the past. It is also used to describe 2 or more actions in the past. Past perfect tense is used to tell stories. The structure of a past perfect tense is Had + Past participle. E.g
Tola had eaten.
Sola had gone to school.
Tola cooked dinner after she had bought food.
In the last example; ‘cooked’ is the simple past tense while ‘had bought’ is the past perfect tense. ‘had bought’ is the past perfect tense because it is the action that occurred earlier in the sentence. The past perfect is the earlier action in time.
Simple past tense.
Simple past tense is used to describe an action that occurred in the past. It is used to tell stories. E.g
I cooked the meat.
Wale went to school.
I went to school and I played football.
Present perfect simple tense.
The present perfect simple tense is an action in the past that has an effect in the present. The structure of present perfect simple tense is as follows;
Pronoun + have/has + past participle.
The present perfect simple tense also tells two or more actions in the past that are the same. It is also used to tell achievement.
I have eaten bread. ‘have eaten‘ is the present perfect simple tense.
I have been to Nigeria four times.
The football match has ended and everyone has gone home.
Past perfect continuous.
The past perfect continuous has the structure, had been + (verb) ing.
Past perfect continuous is used to tell two or more actions in the past, emphasising how long one action took before the other one started.
It is also used to state how long an action has continued in the past.
I had been working for 5 hours. In this example, ‘had been working’ is the past perfect continuous tense. It tells us that a work which started in the past, has continued for 5 hours.
I had been sitting outside for 5 minutes when I was called in. This example tells of an action in the past that continued for 5 minutes before another action began.
Present continuous tense
The present continuous tense is used to describe an action happening now or at the moment. It’s structure is as follows;
Pronoun + am,is are,+ (verb) ing.
I am washing clothes.
They are reading.
Present perfect continuous tense.
The present perfect continuous tense is used to state an action that happened in the past that may continue into the future. Its structure is as follows;
Pronoun + Have/has + been + past participle.
We have been living together for 3 months.
You have been eating.
Dangote company has been producing sugar for 5 years
A sentence is passive when the subject or person doing the verb is not known or is not necessary. The structure of passive tense is;
Be + past participle
- The laptop was opened.
- Rice is being cooked.
- Large meetings are held in this room.
- The match was watched by thousands of people.