(A) When we use present continuous, it means that we are doing something and that the action hasn’t finished yet. It indicates that we are in the middle of doing it. Check the examples below and study it.
- Please don’t make so much noise. I’m trying to work. (not I try)
- ”Where’s Mark?” “He’s having a shower.” (not He has a shower)
- Let’s go out now. It isn’t raining any more. (not It doesn’t rain)
- (at a party) Hello, Jane. Are you enjoying the party? (not Do you enjoy)
- What’s all that noise? What’s going on? (= What’s happening?)
(B) However, the action is not necessarily happening at the time of speaking. For example:
Some more examples:
- Katie wants to work in Italy, so she’s learning Italian. (but perhaps she isn’t learning Italian at the time of speaking)
- Some friends of mine are building their own house. They hope to finish it next summer.
(C) Other than that, we can also use the present continuous with today / this week / this year etc. (periods around now)
- Jamie: You’re working very hard today. (not You work hard today)
- The company I work for isn’t doing so well this year.
(D) We use the present continuous when we talk about changes happening around now, especially with these verbs:
- Is your English getting better? (not Does your English get better)
- The population of the world is increasing very fast. (not increases)
- At first I didn’t like my job, but I’m beginning to enjoy it now. (not I begin)
Hence, the formula table for present continuous is:
In the next post we shall discuss and compare the two types of tenses that we have learned so far (present simple and present continuous) so make sure you fully understand them! :)