Inglés

Relating important moments of the past

Verb To Be – Past tense

The verb “To Be” has two forms in the past tense: singular (was) and plural (were). Look at Grammar Box 1.

The negative of “To Be” can be made by adding not after the verb (was or were). Look at the examples:

  • I was not tired this morning.
  • You were not crazy.
  • He was not in the bathroom.
  • They were not in Mexico City.

You can make negative contractions of the verb “To Be” in the past tense by joining the verb (was or were) and n’t (e.g. were not = weren’t). You don’t make a contraction of the subject and the verb (e.g. I was).

Look at the examples:

  • She was not famous = she wasn’t famous.
  • They were not friends = they weren’t friends.
  • I was not angry = I wasn’t angry.

Interrogative Form: to create questions with “To Be”, you put the verb before the Subject. For example:

In spoken english, we usually give short answers in response to questions. Look at the following example:

Was he from Japan? Yes, he was (from Japan).

The last part (from Japan) is not necessary. We use shorts answers to avoid repetition, when the meaning is clear.

For example:

  • Was your sister sick last month? (interrogative)

Short answer: Yes, she was. (affirmative)
No, she was not = No, she wasn’t. (negative)

Regular and irregular verbs

English language uses both regular and irregular verbs. A regular verb is any verb whose conjugation follows the typical pattern of the language to which it belong.

A verb whose conjugation follows a different pattern is called an irregular verb. In Grammar Box 2 you can observe the grammatical rules for both types of verbs.

A verb whose conjugation follows a different pattern is called an irregular verb. In Grammar Box 2 you can observe the grammatical rules for both types of verbs.

Time expressions in past tense

Time expressions are used to identify when the activity happened or how long it lasted. Look at Grammar Box 4.

Fuente: Secretaría de Educación Pública. (2015). Lengua adicional al español II. Ciudad de México.