Grammar Talks L3-03 Present Continuous

Where is everyone?

Two people discuss what their family is doing at the moment.

Part 1: Daniel goes to Hana's house.

Daniel: Hey, I'm really sorry I'm late. I came as fast as I could.

Hana: It's OK. Nobody has really come yet.

Daniel: Why? Where are they?

Hana: Well, John is shopping. He is getting some food.

Daniel: OK, what about Emma? Where is she?

Hana: Emma has an exam, so she is studying and she is going to come later.

Daniel: OK, how about Alex? I don't see him around.

Hana: Oh, Alex is over there. He is preparing for the BBQ.

Daniel: Oh, yeah, that's right. And how about Marcus and Emily?

Hana: They are over there. They are playing.

Daniel: Oh, so how many people are left? Who else is coming?

Hana: Uh, I don't know. No one has really contacted me yet.

Daniel: Oh, well, let's hope we can get around ten people maybe.

Hana: Yes, I hope so.

Daniel: Cool!

Part 2: Hana goes to Daniel's house.

Hana: Hello!

Daniel: Hello, come in.

Hana: Where is everyone?

Daniel: Well, everyone is doing something right now.

Hana: Oh, really? Where's your mom?

Daniel: My mom? She's at the mall. I think she's shopping. I think she's getting the groceries for the week.

Hana: Oh! How about your dad?

Daniel: Well, every weekend he goes to the country club, so I think he's playing golf with his friend now.

Hana: Where's your brother and sister?

Daniel: My brother, he's upstairs. I think he's probably sleeping or playing video games as he always does. And my sister, she's at school. She's playing soccer cause she has a game today.

Hana: Oh, really? When does the game start?

Daniel: I think in twenty or thirty minutes.

Hana: Let's go watch it.

Daniel: Really, that sounds fun. Let's go.

Present Continuous

Point 1: We use the present continuous for actions that start and finish within a timeframe. We often say the action is happenign now.
  1. What are you doing?
  2. I'm calling my friend. (The action will stop soon)
  3. What are you watching on TV?
  4. I'm watching a documentary about the Olympics.
Point 2: We use the present simple tense for an action that is repeating or ongoing. We use the present continuous if the action will end at some time.
  1. I live in New York.
  2. I'm living in New York at the moment. (I will move at some point)
  3. I work a lot.
  4. I'm working a lot these days. (I will work less soon.)
Point 3: In fast spoken English, the be verbs are contracted and the /g/ in the /-ing/ is ommited.
  1. I am having a good time.
  2. I'm havin' a good time.
  3. She is making a big mistake.
  4. She's makin' a big mistake.
  5. He is not coming to the party.
  6. He isn't comin' to the party.
Point 4: We often use the present continuous for plans in the future, especially if the action is known or anticipated by other people.
  • Are you coming to the party tomorrow night?
  • Yes, I'm going, but I'm working tomorrow, so I might be late.
  • Is anyone coming with you?
  • Yes, I'm bringing my friend.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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