Continuous tenses


 

Examples

Estoy escribiendo (I am writing)
Están durmiendo (They are sleeping)
Estabas hablando (You were talking)
Hemos estado jugando (We have been playing)

Use

To emphasise an action is/was/will be in the middle of taking place

Present continuous
Estoy estudiando español
I am in the middle of studying. At this very moment I'm studying.

Simple present
Estudio español
At various times during the year I study Spanish

Formation

Estar + gerund/present participle
i.e. correct part of estar + -ando(ar verbs) or -iendo(er/ir verbs)

Present continuous regular -ar verbs

Estoy jugando - I am playing
Estás jugando - You are playing
Está jugando - He/she/it/usted is/are playing
Estamos jugando - We are playing
Estáis jugando - You vosotros are playing
Están jugando - They/ustedes are playing

Present continuous regular -er/-ir verbs

Estoy comiendo - I am eating
Estás comiendo - You are eating
Está comiendo - He/she/it/usted is/are eating
Estamos comiendo - We are eating
Estáis comiendo - You vosotros are eating
Están comiendo - They/ustedes are eating

Irregular verbs

Verbs that add a 'y' in present e.g. construir
Estoy construyendo - I am building

Radical changing verbs e.g. sentir,dormir
Estás sintiendo - You are feeling
Están durmiendo - They are sleeping

ir
Note that yendo is not often used. Use voy - I am going

Other tenses
Change estar to the correct tense. The present participle stays the same

Imperfect continuous
Estaba jugando - I was playing

Preterite continuous (Emphasise that action was completed)
Estuve jugando - I was playing

Future continuous
Estaré jugando cuando llegues - I will be playing when you arrive

Conditional continuous
Paula estarķa jugando - Paula should be playing

Present perfect continuous
He estado jugando - I have been playing

Past perfect continuous
Había estado jugando - I had been playing

 




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Practice:  Continuous Tenses


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