II. The Formation of Perfect Continuous Tenses. 

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II. The Formation of Perfect Continuous Tenses.

The Perfect Continuous Tenses are formed by means of the auxiliary verb to have in the Present, Past or Future Perfect Tense and Participle Iof the main verb.


Present Perfect Continuous Past Perfect Continuous Future Perfect Continuous
since 1980, for ten years, for a long time, for years, all day, all my life … for some time, for an hour, since 3 o’clock, when he came … for 5 years, by this time, by the end of the year …
Shave / has been Ving Shad been Ving S shall /will have been Ving
Nick has been writinghisexercises for two hours already. The class had been discussingthe article for some time when Henry came in. I will have been livingin Rome for three years next May.
S haven’t/hasn’t been Ving S hadn’t been Ving Sshan’t / won’t have been Ving
Jane hasn’t been workingvery well recently. They hadn’t been waiting even 15 minutes when he came. I shall not have been workingat this problem even for half a month by your next visit.
Have/HasSbeen Ving? Had S been Ving…? Shall/WillShave been Ving …?
Haveyou been writingthis book all these years? For how long hadthe children been playing on the computer when father arrived? For how long willyou have been workingon this project when the director arrives again?


1.Translate into Ukrainian.


1.We’ve been learning English for 6 years. 2.Sorry about the mess: I’ve been painting the house since lunchtime. 3.Jane hasn’t been working very well recently. 4.Mr Brown has been waiting for half an hour. 5.I have been studying at the University since 2002. 6.How long have you been learning English? 7.I had been waiting for you half an hour when you came. 8.We had been playing football for half an hour when there was a terrible storm. 9.They had been discussing this problem for some time when John came in. 10.Jill had been studying English for five years before she visited the USA. 11.Jane was very tired. She had been doing her room since afternoon. 12.Her eyes were red. It was clear she had been crying. 13.Miss Honey will have been teaching for 10 years this summer. 14.By 6 o’clock John will have been playing on the computer for five hours. 15.We’ll have been flying non-stop for four hours before we get to Rome.

2.Make the following sentences negative and interrogative.

1.The film has been running for a month. 2.They have been waiting for the director since two o’clock. 3.The boy has been keeping the book for a month already. 4.The students have been translating the text for an hour and a half. 5.It has been raining since the morning. 6.He had been sitting here for forty minutes when the telephone rang. 7.At eight in the morning we had been driving for six hours. 8.It was clear that they had been gossiping again. 9.He had been looking for his glasses for an hour before he realized he had them in his pocket. 10.They will have been sitting here for twenty minutes when I come. 11.Tomorrow it will be a month as they have been working on this project. 12.We’ll have been working on this book for a year soon.

3.Complete the sentences using the verbs in brackets in the Present Perfect Continuous Tense.

1. Lunch is not ready yet, though I ______ all morning. (to prepare) 2. He cannot read English books, though he ______ for a year. (to learn English) 3. The boys are sure that their friend will come, though they _____ for half an hour. (to wait) 4. Her dress looks quite new, though she ______ for a few months. (to wear)

4.Ask questions with how long.

M O D E L: It is raining. How long has it been raining?

1.My foot is hurting. How long ______ ?

2.Mike plays chess. _______________

3.Jim sells washing machines. _______________

4.Tom is living in High Street. _______________

5.My mother teaches English. ________________

6.It is snowing. ________________

5.Use the Present Perfect Continuous Tense in the following sentences, make use of the adverbial modifiers suggested in the brackets (watch the change in the meaning).

M O D E L 1: He has already written this letter. (since morning)

He has been writing this letter since morning.

1.They have already built the theatre. (for two years) 2.We have discussed all these problems. (the whole month) 3.I have helped her with her work. (since she came to this office) 4.He has just read this book. (all week) 5.She has taught them how to do it. (for years) 6.Has he read the book? (long) 7.I’ve looked through today’s newspapers. (since the postman brought them)

M O D E L 2: They are playing tennis now. (since lunch time)

They have been playing tennis since lunch time.

1.It’s snowing hard. (since early morning) 2.I’m looking for a book which I’ve put somewhere. (since I returned from the office) 3.She is wearing a brown hat today. (for three years) 4.They are making tractors at this factory (since 1935) 5.They are translating an article from the Kyiv Post now. (for two hours) 6.The baby is crying. (all morning) 7.I’m reading David Copperfield now. (this week) 8.She is waiting for you in the hall. (for twenty minutes)

6.Practise the Past Perfect Continuous Tense according to the model.

M O D E L 1: He was short of breath because (run all the way)

He was short of breath because he had been running all the way.

1.His hands were dirty (work in the garden) 2.She passed all her examinations very well. (study hard throughout the term) 3.He was behind the group. (not study properly) 4.She got used to his strange way of life (live together for a long time). 5.She looked half asleep. (rest).

M O D E L 2: They drove for three hours. Then they stopped for lunch.

After they had been driving for three hours, they stopped for lunch.

1.We walked for an hour. Then we understood that we had taken the wrong road. 2.He waited for her for half an hour. Then he went away. 3.He worked at the laboratory for five years. Then he changed his job. 4.I thought the matter over for some time. Then I took a decision. 5.He looked through the latest newspapers and magazines for some time. Then he sat down to his report. 6.She watched the television late into the night. Then she could not sleep.

7.Choose the right tense:

a)Past Perfect or Past Perfect Continuous.

1.You were out of breath when you came in this morning. You (run)? 2.When mother got home she found that little Kitty (paint) her room. She (paint) two walls red and one wall yellow. 3.It (rain) for several days before the wind changed. 4.Jane told me she (write) regularly to her granny, but (not, receive) any answer. 5.We (cook) all day for the party that evening but by eight o’clock in the evening Jane (not, finish) laying the table yet.

b)Past Continuous or Past Perfect Continuous

1.Jim was on his hands and knees on the floor. He (look) for his cigarette lighter. 2.We (walk) along the road for about twenty minutes when a car stopped and the driver offered us a lift. 3.When I arrived, everyone was sitting round the table with their mouths full. They (eat). 4.When I arrived everyone was sitting round the table and talking. Their mouths were empty but their stomachs were full. They (eat). 5.When I arrived, Ann (wait) for me. She was rather annoyed with me because I was late and she (wait) for a very long time.

8.Open the brackets, using the Perfect Continuous tense forms.

1.What you (do) for the past two weeks? 2.Suddenly she understood that she(speak) for a long time and it was time to stop. 3.He (paint) this picture for two years and I don’t know when he is going to finish it. 4.He took out his watch and looked at it. It was two o’clock. It meant that he (wait) since 11 o’clock. 5.For the past few minutes I (try) to explain you that you can’t make me go there. 6.The children (fight) for some time when the door opened and the teacher came into the classroom. 7.Peter who (write) something for some time in silence, suddenly joined in the discussion. 8.You’re sure you are well, Jack? I (think) that this work is a bit too hard for your age.

9.Translate into English.

1.Що ти тут робиш? – Чекаю автобуса. – Скільки часу ти чекаєш його? – Я чекаю його вже десять хвилин. 2.Ми вивчаємо англійську мову. Ми вивчаємо її вже чотири роки. 3.З якого часу його батько працює головним інженером заводу? 4.Дощ іде зранку. 5.Ганна загубила ручку, вона вже чверть години шукає її. 6.Микола закінчив середню школу три роки тому. З того часу він працює на заводі. 7.Коли ви почали читати цю книжку? Скільки часу ви читаєте її? 8.Студенти вже півтори години обговорюють фільм, який вони бачили вчора. 9.Коли я увійшов до аудиторії, мої одногрупники обговорювали план екскурсії. Вони обговорювали його вже двадцять хвилин. 10.Коли Тетяна закінчила інститут, її сестра вже п’ять років викладала англійську мову у школі. 11.Його батьки залишили квартиру, в якій вони прожили двадцять років. 12.Я шукав свій зошит півгодини, перш ніж знайшов його під газетою. 13.Вчора листоноша приніс мені лист. Я чекав цього листа три тижні. 14.Коли ми вийшли з дому, йшов дощ. Він йшов уже дві години.


Topical Vocabulary

1.Remember the following words and word combinations:

fast to drive a car wheel to switch on the motor to park traffic “jam” round-about to ride bumpy to get stuck in the mud a spin to rush magnificent views cliff precipice швидкий вести машину рульове колесо вмикати мотор ставити на стоянку затор (“пробка”) об’їзний шлях їхати (на машині тощо) вибоїстий, нерівний, тряский зав’язнути у грязі швидка їзда мчати чудові краєвиди стрімка скеля обрив, прірва

2.Read and translate paying attention to the active words and word combinations.


As for me there is nothing better than to travel by car – a good, fast car I mean. When you are in an airplane, you have to be driven by someone else; travel by car is a more personal experience, for there you can drive yourself.

You just sit down at the wheel, switch on the motor, step on the pedal with your foot and off the car goes. You can go as slowly or as fast as you wish, stop when and where you choose; you park the car on the side of the road, get out and go where you like.

It is quite true that driving a car has some disadvantages. In town it is rather nuisance with all these traffic “jams” or “hold-ups”, round-abouts and so on. It is not altogether pleasant when you ride on a bumpy road or get a flat tyre, or still worse, when you get stuck in the mud.

But what can be better than a spin in a car on a weekend with your friend? As soon as you get out of the crowded town and see the long wide road opening up before you, what a thrill it is to feel the car rush forward at a touch of your foot, to feel the wind in your face, to see houses, trees and people flash past, to feel the real joy of speed.

Then, of course, you see much more of the country than you do in a plane. Suppose you are on vacation and have decided to take a 700-800 mile trip down South in a car. What magnificent views you behold on your way – the cheerful fields, the road winding its way up the mountain with steep, grey cliffs on one side and a deep precipice on the other, the shining expanse of the sea wrapped in a blue noonday haze, the woods, the rows of acacia that stretch along the streets of the towns that you pass through.

Indeed, your impressions are unforgettable.

3.Make the choice and translate:

1.Travelling by car/airplane is a more personal experience, for there you can drive yourself.

2.On the side of the road you can park the train/car.

3.It is unpleasant/pleasant when you ride on a bumpy road.

4.While driving a car one may get stuck in the grass/mud.

5.The car rushes forward at a touch of your hand/foot.

6. On the road/in the air we have a lot of difficulties with the traffic “jams” and round-abouts.

7.We can stop when and where we wish travelling by car/train.

8.In a car you switch on the wheel/ motor/pedal.

4.Translate into English:

1.Я надаю перевагу подорожі автомобілем. 2.Подорожуючи машиною, ви можете зупинитись де і коли вам забажається. 3.Подорож автомобілем має деякі недоліки, а саме: “пробки”, об’їзний шлях, вибоїста дорога, спущена шина. 4.Коли подорожуєш автомобілем, звертай увагу на світлофор. 5.Немає нічого краще за швидку їзду автомобілем. 6.Не дуже приємно зав’язнути у грязі. 7.Які чудові поля, гори, ріки, озера, скелі ви можете побачити, подорожуючи автомобілем. 8.Від доторку ноги машина мчиться вперед. 9.Яке це щастя відчувати швидкість! 10.Коли я сідаю за кермо і вмикаю мотор, я забуваю про все на світі.

5.Speak on the pros and cons of travelling by car.

6.Describe what you can see and feel while travelling by car.


Text A. Cars Driving Us Crazy?

1.Read and translate.

Technology has given us plenty of things that improve our lives: computers, calculators, mobile phones, CDs… It has also given us cheaper and faster cars that most people in western countries can afford. Cars improve our lives in lots of ways but they also cause problems.

My own car

Lots of teenagers dream of the day when they will be old enough to learn to drive (at age 17 in the UK) and have their own car. There are plenty of reasons why. They will be able to go out where they like, when they like. They won’t have to ask their parents to take them. They won’t have to go home early because the last bus leaves at half past ten. They will be able to give their friends a lift. Passing their driving test is a very important day in many teenagers’ lives. Cars are also a big status symbol. If you own a big, fast car, you must be rich and successful.

The problems

Cars cause a lot of problems. Here are some of them. Put them in order from 1 to 6 (1 for the biggest problem, 6 for the smallest problem, in your opinion).

· The roads are too busy. People driving in cities or on the motorway often have to sit in traffic jams.

· Towns are often designed for cars, not for people. On some roads, pedestrians have to use dark, dirty subways to get across the road.

· The noise of traffic causes stress for people who live and work near busy roads.

· Finding a parking space in cities and towns is often almost impossible.

· Cars create a great deal of pollution. Air pollution is getting worse because more and more people own cars.

· Every time you get into a car you risk having an accident.

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