The Present Continuous Tense
Meaning and Use
Present Continuous Tense: Form, Meaning and Use
In one of my recent classes, I was asked about how we use Present Continuous tense. Today I'll show, with simple examples, the form, meaning and use of this grammar point.
See and study the following examples below:
A: Form (形と語順）
See the table at the bottom (以下の表を参考）:
B: Meaning and Use
1. We often use present continuous to talk about activities or process that is happening at the moment of speaking:
Joe: What are you doing
Ann: I'm studying for my test.
2. The activity or process does not have to be happening precisely at the moment of speaking. We use the continuous to describe activities that stop and start during longer time periods that include the present time, such as these days, this semester, this year etc:
Ken: What is your doing these days?
Mary: He is coaching the neighbourhood kid’s football team.
3. Adverbs and adverbial phrases such as now, right now and at this / the moment frequently occur with present continuous. They help emphasise the event is in progress:
Jon: It's raining hard right now.
4. Notice that even the expressions now, right now do not always mean at the moment of speaking:
Marie runs into Chris on the bus:
Marie: Are you working now?
Chris: No, but I'm looking for a job at the moment.