Tag Archives: présent parfait

Present perfect: What have you done today?

Ceci est un exercice de compréhension. Revisez dans votre livre numérique ‘Free English Grammar’ ce point de grammaire – present perfect.

Real English is a Registered Trademark of the Marzio School.

What have you done this morning? – Qu’avez-vous fait ce matin?
What did you do yesterday? – Qu’avez-vous fait hier?

present_perfect

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‘for’ and ‘since’ again

Notice in the video how many times Alex says ‘so’ (alors) ‘OK’ (bon) ‘right?’ (n’est-ce pas? /c’est ça euh?)
English speakers punctuate their speech with these little words, just like French speakers do with ‘alors’ ‘fin’ ‘bien’ ‘eh?’ This is probably more important to know than the lesson itself!

Try the quiz at the end.

1. I've worked here ______ two years.



2. I've been playing guitar _____ 20 years.



3. I've wanted to visit Timbuktu _______ I was a child.



4. Where've you been? I've been looking for you _____ ages.



5. How long have you had this problem? - ______ Thursday.



6. It's been cooking ______ 1 hour, so it should be ready now.



7. Man has been making music _____ the beginning of time.



It's the best invention _______ sliced bread!





Transcript:
Hi this is Alex, and welcome to this lesson on using ‘for’ and ‘since’. Now we use these two terms when you want to talk about something that began in the past so the tenses that you’ll most often be using ‘for’ and ‘since’ with will be the present perfect and the present perfect progressive.

So when we use ‘for’ and ‘since’ again we want to, depending on if you want to talk about for how long you have been doing something versus when you began doing something, you’ll use one or the other, for instance we use ‘for’ when we want to talk about how long we have been doing something. So we’re talking about
a specific duration of time. For instance, ‘I have lived in Canada for five years’ for example.
When we use ‘since’ we talk about when we began doing something, at which point we started something:
‘I have known how to drive since 1996’ or something like that.

OK so let’s look at the examples that we have on the board. So remember we use ‘for’ when we want to talk about how long we’ve been doing something and we use ‘since’ when we talk about at which point we began doing something.

OK so, ‘it has rained (blank) 9am’ so we know that 9am is a specific time, right? So a specific time in the past we would use ‘since’- ‘it has rained since 9am’

Let’s look at the second example, also dealing with rain, ‘it has rained (blank) three hours’. Now, unlike 9am, 9am is a specific time in the past, right? 3 hours is a span of time, how long something has been happening.
‘It has rained for 3 hours’, remember a span of time we use ‘for’.

Let’s continue.
‘I have known how to read (blank) grade three. Or since the third grade, if you want to be specific. OK So grade three is a specific moment in the past, right? it already happened. So let’s look at our rules and it would be ‘since’. Right? so grade three is not a specific span of time, grade three is something that has
happened it’s finished, it’s over… so let’s look at the next one:

‘she’s been waiting (blank) 45 minutes’

Again 45 minutes – specific span of time, right? So, ‘she’s been waiting for 45 minutes’.
OK so finally, ‘I have lived here (blank) 4 years.’

So again, we have 3 hours, 45 minutes, 4 years, all measures of specific periods of time, so we use ‘for’ in that case:
‘I have lived here for 4 years’. OK.

So just a reminder, when you are using ‘for’, you’re talking about a specific duration of time, how long something has been happening, versus when you use ‘since’, which tells a person when you began doing something, or a specific moment in the past.

Present perfect: explanations for French speakers

I received the following message recently, and thought that everyone might like to read it. If you are having problems understanding the present perfect, you are not alone! Thanks to Fabienne for this explanation.

J’ai une petite idée pour le présent parfait que je vous propose : voici ce que je dis à ceux qui me demandent un peu d’aide au soutien scolaire.
Je leur dis que l’action a commencé dans le passé et dure encore dans le présent.

Ex. J’ai déménagé il y a 3 ans ! (c’est passé, terminé ! coupé du présent, mon déménagement n’a eu lieu qu’une fois à une date passée) : donc prétérit !
J’habite ici depuis 3 ans (ce qui signifie que le mois dernier, j’habitais déjà ici !) L’action se prolonge dans le présent, tout en ayant débuté dans le passé !
J’habite toujours ici “à ce jour”, (depuis 3 ans) (present perfect !) ; hier j’y habitais “déjà” ! (preterit !).
Il y a une notion de passé, dans le présent qui se vit !
passé —————> X présent
Qu’en pensez-vous ? Cela vous convient-il ?
Les Français, en général, comprennent mieux !

present perfect progressive

C’est très difficile d’expliquer ce temps! Voici le problème:

L’année dernière, j’ai couru le marathon de Londres
last year, I ran the London marathon

J’ai couru trois marathons cette année

I’ve run three marathons this year

Je suis fatigué parce que j’ai couru

I’m tired because I’ve been running

Clair? Pas vraiment!
Parfois, on utilise un tel point de grammaire non pas pour clarifier, mais d’omettre certaines informations.
Quand on dit ‘I’ve been running’ au lieu de ‘I’ve run’ ou ‘I ran’ le plus important est qu’il y a une action mais si c’est terminé ou pas ne nous intéresse pas.

Comparez ces exemples:
I painted the house. (j’ai peint la maison, action achevée, aucun lien avec le présent: on ne sais pas quand, c’était peut-être il y a dix ans)
I’ve painted the house (j’ai peint la maison, action achevée, lien avec le présent: la maison a une nouvelle couche de peinture et ça se voit!)
I’ve been painting the house (action achevée ou pas, on ne s’intéresse seulement à l’action même, peindre la maison)

si vous n’êtes pas anglophone, c’est impossible de voir toutes les nuances, et je vous demande pardon pour mes lacunes en tant que formateur!

Il vaut mieux regarder encore des exemples afin de voir des choses comme des anglophones (je sais, je sais, on est compliqué…)

Ca fait une heure que j’attends : I’ve been waiting for one hour

J’ai une nouvelle copine. On sort ensemble depuis deux semaines: I have a new girlfriend. We’ve been going out for two weeks.

Je vis ici depuis dix ans: I’ve lived here for ten years.

Je vis ici seulement trois mois, mais je ne supporte plus cette ville. I’ve only been living here three months, but I can’t stand this town anymore.

For advanced learners:
The difference between the present perfect simple and the present perfect progressive is exactly the same as the difference between the present simple and the present progressive, or the past simple and the past progressive. Think about it:

If I say “I live in London” then logically I would say “I’ve lived in London for two years

But if I choose to say “I’m living in London” then it would be normal to say “I’ve been living in London for two years

In these cases, it’s your choice, native speakers don’t really pay much attention to the grammar being used.

If I say “I’m waiting for the bus” (action happening right now), then I could ask the question:
How long have you been waiting?” which is more likely (for native speakers) than “How long have you waited?”

Present perfect: he has gone- he has been

He has gone : Il est parti.

He has gone to Spain : Il est parti en Espagne (il y est encore)

He has been : Il est allé.

He has been to Spain : Il est allé en Espagne (mais il en est revenu)

On peut imaginer donc que ‘has gone’ signifie un aller-simple, et ‘has been’ signifie un aller-retour. Bien que ce temps en anglais est un temp présent (le présent parfait), on l’utilise également pour parler de notre vie, nos expériences. Pour nous, c’est un temps présent parce que la vie continue, elle n’est pas encore terminée.

‘In my life I’ve been to Australia, Tanzania, Italy, Spain and France, but I’ve never been to America…’

‘Dans ma vie, je suis allé en Australie … etc, mais je ne suis jamais allé aux Etats Unis… ‘

Exercice

Qu’en pensez-vous? Comment traduire les phrases suivantes en anglais?

1. Il est parti manger.
2. Hier, je suis allé au cinéma.
3. Tu l’as raté, elle vient de sortir.
4. Es-tu déjà allé à l’atelier Cézanne?
5. Où étais-tu? (si la personne vient juste de revenir)

Réponses:

1. Il est parti manger. – He has gone to eat/to lunch
2. Hier, je suis allé au cinéma. – I went to the cinema yesterday
3. Tu l’as raté, elle vient de sortir. – You missed her, she has just gone out
4. Es-tu déjà allé à l’atelier Cézanne? – Have you ever been to Cézanne’s studio?
5. Où étais-tu? (si la personne vient juste de revenir) – Where have you been?

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