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The Present Simple

The present simple is just one of numerous kinds of present tenses in English. It is used to define habits, imperishable situations, general truths, and fixed plans. The present simple tense is easy to form. Just use the base form of the verb:

  • I work;

  • You work;

  • We work;

  • They work.

The 3rd person singular has an irregular form that we will discuss in a later post.

The present simple tense is made use of: 1. To express habits:

  • I run everyday;

  • You smoke.

2. General truths:

  • Toronto is a large city;

  • Canada is in North America.

3. Repeated actions or unchanging situations:

  • I work in Toronto;

  • You go to school.

4. Feelings and desires:

  • I want to go out;

  • I am so tired.

5. To offer instructions or directions:

  • You drive for two kilometers, then you turn right.

  • You take the 88 bus to go to Seneca College.

6. To reveal set plans, present or future:

  • Our class starts at 04:00 PM;

  • Their flight leaves at 10:00 PM.

7. To express future time, after some conjunctions (after, when, before, as soon as, until):

  • I will lend it to you when I see you next week;

  • I will get back to you as soon as I talk to her.


The simple present is not made use of to express activities happening now. The present continuous will be discussed in a later post.

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