Present continuous and present simple

You are currently viewing Present continuous and present simple
5
(1)

Compare

present continuous (I am doing) present simple (I do) We use the continuous for things happening at or around the time of speaking. The action is not complete.

  • The water is boiling. Be careful.
  • Listen to those people. What language are they speaking?
  • Let’s go out. It isn’t raining now.
  • ‘I’m busy.’ ‘What are you doing?’
  • I’m getting hungry. Let’s go and eat.
  • Kate wants to work in Italy, so she’s learning Italian.
  • The population of the world is increasing very fast.

We use the continuous for temporary situations (things that continue for a short time):

  • I’m living with some friends until I find a place of my own.
  • a: You’re working hard today. b: Yes, I have a lot to do.

See Present Continuous for more information.

present simple (I do)

We use the simple for things in general or things that happen repeatedly.

  • Water boils at 100 degrees Celsius.
  • Excuse me, do you speak English?
  • It doesn’t rain very much in summer.
  • What do you usually do at weekends?
  • I always get hungry in the aft ernoon.
  • Most people learn to swim when they are children.
  • Every day the population of the world increases by about 200,000 people.

We use the simple for permanent situations (things that continue for a long time):

  • My parents live in London. They have lived there all their lives.
  • Joe isn’t lazy. He works hard most of the time.

See Present Simple for more information.

I always do and I’m always doing

I always do something = I do it every time:

  • I always go to work by car. (not I’m always going)

I’m always doing something = I do it too oft en or more oft en than normal. For example:

I’m always losing them = I lose them too oft en, or more oft en than normal.

  • Paul is never satisfied. He’s always complaining. (= he complains too much)
  • You’re always looking at your phone. Don’t you have anything else to do?

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 1

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

As you found this post useful...

Follow us on social media!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Leave a Reply