• English Past Progressive Video

    In this lesson Frank and I talk about the past progressive, also known as the past continuous. I ask Frank if he has ever rescued a person or animal. He tells me a story about when he helped a co-worker. You can listen to him use the past progressive.


    We use the past progresive when we are talking about a longer action in the past that was interrupted by a shorter action in the past.
    Example: I was sleeping when the telephone rang.

    We also use the past progressive to set the atmosphere of a story.
    Example: It was raining and I was waiting at the bus stop.

    We form the past progressive with the past of the verb ‘be’ (was or were) + Verb ING

    Common mistakes:

    Using the present progressive form am/are/is. Remember that present progressive is for an action happening now. Past progressive is for an action that started and ENDED in the past.
    Not using the correct form of the verb ‘be’ ‘I was running…, You WERE running, She was running, we WERE running, they WERE running.
    Not using the verb ‘be’ I running to the car. INCORRECT. I WAS running to the car.
    Using the past progressive when you should use past simple. We use the past simple when we talk about a repeated action in the past. When we were on vacation we went swimming everyday.

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