The Past Progressive Tense




The Past Progressive Tense :


Use the past progressive tense to talk about actions that were going on at a certain moment in the past.


Mary was waiting for the bus when Peter passed by.
Miss May was cleaning the chalkboard.
Sally was packing her books into her schoolbag.
Jenny and I were tidying the classroom.
The twins were fighting in the corner.
Michael and John were washing the paint brushes.
Mom was cooking our supper when I came home.


You form the past progressive tense like this.

was + present participle
were + present participle


In the examples above, was and were are called helping verbs, or auxiliary verbs. They help to form the past progressive tense when you join them to the present participle (the form of verbs ending in -ing) .

For examples :

Ben was doing his homework.
Peter was making a model of a bridge.


We were the champions last year.
Where is James? He was here just now.
Mom and Dad were on vacation last week.
The weather was fine this morning.
There were a lot of people at our party yesterday.
There was a small lake here many years ago.
He was sick yesterday.
Don’t blame him. It was my mistake.


When Miss May walked into the class what were the children doing?
James was talking to Peter.
Sue was reading a storybook.
Rudy erased the chalkboard.
David was doing his math exercise.
Peter was showing Joe his new watch.
Jane was drawing a horse in her notebook.
Ahmad was looking for his pencil.
Some children were making a lot of noise.


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