Study P5 English Perfect Tense & Common Tense Errors - Geniebook

Perfect Tense & Common Tense Errors

In this article, we will be learning more about Perfect Tenses. We will look into some of the common errors that are made by students when dealing with tenses.

 

What is Perfect Tense & the Common Tense Errors?

  • Perfect Tense: what does it look like and what is it used for?
  • Common tense errors: using the wrong form of the verb. We will highlight these along the way.

 

The Perfect Tense

  • Tells us that an action is completed (perfected)
  • Exists in the Past, Present, and Future
  • General formula: have/has/had/will have + [past participle]

 

Past Perfect

Tells you that that action was done earlier than another past action.

E.g. I went outside and saw that someone had left a note on the ground.

       (This happened later)                      (This happened first)

 

Note: it is always had, regardless of the pronoun/noun before.

E.g. I had seen, she had brought, they had placed.

 

To reiterate what was stated earlier:

Always follow up with the past participle of the verb, and nothing else.

I had went (incorrect) —> I had gone (correct)

Common error: using the past form of the verb instead of the past participle

 

Present Perfect

Refers to an action/state that happened at an unspecified time in the past and is still true in the present time:

E.g. We have met before.

 

Or began in the past and continued to the present time:

E.g. He has grown hungrier over the last hour.

 

Note: We use either have or has, depending on the pronoun/noun before.

E.g. I have seen, she has brought, they have placed.

 

Again, always follow up with the past participle of the verb.

 

Common mistake: using the past form of verbs with irregular past participles (e.g. do/did/done, know/knew/known)

 

 

Future Perfect 

This is not in the Primary 5 syllabus, but it is good to know.

Used for actions that will be completed between now and some specified deadline in the future.

E.g. The show will have ended by 9 pm.

 

Note: The phrase is always will have, regardless of the pronoun/noun before.

E.g. I will have seen, she will have brought, they will have placed.

 

And as usual, follow up with the past participle of the verb.

 

Common mistake: using the Future Perfect Tense instead of the Simple Future Tense when there is no deadline.

 

Harry will have eaten (By when? Incorrect!) —> Harry will eat.


 

Practice Questions - Perfect Tenses


 

Question:

Kaytie __________ to take up football after she (had) watched her first live match at the stadium.

 

(1) had decided

(2) deciding

(3) decided

(4) will decide

 

Answer:

3) decided

 

Explanation:

Option 3 is the correct answer. In this sentence, there are two events - the first is watching a live football match; the second is the decision to take up football. We cannot use ‘had decided’ as we use past participle for the first event. Here, her decision to take up football happens after she has watched the live match.


 

Question:

All the missing pieces __________. We can now solve this puzzle!

 

(1) had been found

(2) have been found

(3) has been found

(4) will be found


 

Answer:

2) have been found

 

Explanation:

Option 2 is the correct answer. It is happening right now, so the present participle is used.
 

Question:

Mage __________ his teeth. He can now go to bed.

 

(1) brushes

(2) has brushed

(3) have brushed

(4) is brushing

 

Answer:

2) has brushed

 

Explanation:

Option 2 is the correct answer. Option 2 is correct as he has just brushed his teeth and only after that is he going to bed. Therefore, we use Present Perfect Tense.

 

Question:

Maryo __________ plumbing before he got his first job. That gave him the knowledge and confidence to do his best.

 

(1) studies

(2) has studied

(3) studying

(4) had studied
 

Answer:

4) had studied

 

Explanation:

Option 4 is the correct answer. The clue is ‘got’ and ‘before’. It is a series of two events that happened in the past. The first event is studying and the second event is getting a job. Both have already happened in the past. We then use the past participle for the first event.


 

Past Perfect Tense and Present Perfect Tense

 

had + [ past participle ]

 

have/has + [ past participle ]

 

Note: we will cover the “Continuous” version of both in a future lesson.

 

Question:

Tanjirow could not sleep. He stayed up all night because he __________ some unexpected but exciting news. “Pilot for Experimental Vehicle”. The job description was vague but it seemed incredible nonetheless. 
 

(1) had received

(2) receives

(3) had been receiving

(4) has received
 

Answer:

1) had received

 

Explanation:

Option 1 is the correct answer. There are 2 events that happened in the past.

  1. He received some news.
  2. He stayed up all night because of the news.

So, the past participle tense is used.

 

Question:

How many questions __________ the children __________ by the time the bell rang?

(1) will … have completed

(2) had … completing

(3) will … completing

(4) had … completed

 

Answer:

4) had ... completed

 

Explanation:

Option 4 is the correct answer. Two events occurred in the past, the first being completing the questions and the second being that the bell rang.
 

 

Question:

The pupils in Primary One _________  as much exposure to literature as the Primary Four students have.

 

(1) had not had

(2) has not had

(3) had not have

(4) have not had
 

Answer:

4) have not had

 

Explanation:

Option 4 is the correct answer.

 

Question:

Now that the rain _________, we can go out to play!

 

(1) has stopped

(2) having stopped

(3) had stopped

(4) have stopped

 

Answer:

1) has stopped

 

Explanation:

Option 1 is the correct answer. The rain has stopped in the recent past and so it is still valid. 


 

Conclusion

 

In this article, we have learned about the Perfect Tense and Common Tense Errors as per the Primary 5 English syllabus.

Here are Perfect Tenses in brief:

  • The Perfect Tense tells us an action/state has been completed
  • Past Perfect: 

- had + [ past participle ]

  • Present Perfect:

- has/have (depending on the subject before) + [ past participle ]

  • Always use the past participle form of the verb 

- Especially for verbs with irregular past participles


 

Continue Learning
Synthesis & Transformation : Reason Relative Pronouns: Who, Whom & Whose
Vocabulary: Synonyms & Word Substitution Pronouns: Demonstrative, Possessive & Reflexive
Editing: Sharpening Your Understanding Synthesis & Transformation: Reported Speech
Verbs: Modals & Interrogatives Synthesis & Transformation - Active And Passive Voice
Character Development: ALTOS & Creating A Memorable Character Grammar Cloze - Revision
Expand Your Vocabulary: Different Ways To Express Speech, Hearing & Seeing Comprehension & Question Tags
The Difference in Some Clozes Perfect Tense & Common Tense Errors
Interrogative Words & Modal Verbs Prepositions - All Types
Comprehension - Factual Questions Simple, Perfect And Continuous Tenses

 

Resources - Academic Topics
Primary
Primary 1
Primary 2
Primary 3
Primary 4
Primary 5
English
Synthesis & Transformation : Reason
Relative Pronouns: Who, Whom & Whose
Vocabulary: Synonyms & Word Substitution
Pronouns: Demonstrative, Possessive & Reflexive
Editing: Sharpening Your Understanding
Synthesis & Transformation: Reported Speech
Verbs: Modals & Interrogatives
Synthesis & Transformation - Active And Passive Voice
Character Development: ALTOS & Creating A Memorable Character
Grammar Cloze - Revision
Expand Your Vocabulary: Different Ways To Express Speech, Hearing & Seeing
Comprehension & Question Tags
The Difference in Some Clozes
Perfect Tense & Common Tense Errors
Interrogative Words & Modal Verbs
Prepositions - All Types
Comprehension - Factual Questions
Simple, Perfect And Continuous Tenses
+ More
Maths
+ More
Science
+ More
Primary 6
Secondary
Secondary 1
Secondary 2
Secondary 3
Secondary 4
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