This High English quiz on tenses focusses on the present continuous tense. The present continuous tense uses the verb TO BE and the '__ING' form of another verb. The form basically comprises two parts: BE (AM, ARE and IS) and a verb ending in '__ING'. For instance: ‘She is dancing’ is a sentence following the form just described using the verb TO BE (IS) and '____ING' (DANCING).
The use of the present continuous tense is to describe actions that are taking place now, but have begun before now and will continue for a short while after now. Usually, you add a component of time, such as ‘now’ or ‘at the moment’, to make it more clear, as in the sentence ‘they are singing now.’
The present continuous tense is also used when the time duration is longer but the action is still temporary and in the future. For instance, ‘the band is playing in Bangalore this month’ implies that the band may play elsewhere in another month. In this tense form future action should be planned or intended. For instance, you cannot say ‘he is dying tomorrow.’
There are certain verbs, predominantly of emotion, that are not used in the continuous form. For instance, the sentence ‘my son loves to paint’ is the correct form and not ‘my son is loving to paint.’ However, there are certain verbs that have different meanings for the same verb. For instance, ‘I am feeling nauseous’ is acceptable whereas ‘I am feeling we will lose’ is not acceptable.
There is a saying, ‘practice makes perfect’ and the quiz that follows will help you to practice the art of using the present continuous tense.