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Past Simple

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Welcome to our Past Simple Exercises. Let’s learn how to use the past simple tense to describe moments and periods of time in the past. It is important to learn how to use them properly at this expanding stage of English,, where there is more focus on academic tasks and language functions. These Past Simple Exercises teach you to talk about the completion of an event or action.

About 20 minutes.Learning how to use the past tense.Expanding stage of learning English.
Match-upExercise 1Exercise 2Exercise 3Examples
We can often just put -ed at the end (regular verbs). But many verbs are irregular, so you don’t use -ed. Can you spot the regular and irregular verbs in the past tense?

You can often just put -ed at the end (regular verbs)

  • I play basketball at school now. Before that, I played football last term.
  • Charlie passed his exam because he studied very hard.
  • I stopped off at the coffee shop on my way home from school.

But many verbs are irregular, so you don’t use -ed.

  • see ⇢ saw = I saw a great movie at the cinema last night.
  • go ⇢ went = Emma went home late last night
  • write ⇢ wrote = Jack wrote an email to his friend yesterday.

When you use the past of be (am/is/are), it changes to was/were.

In questions and negative sentences, you use did/didn’t + infinitive

  • I enjoyed the football match last night. Did you enjoy it?
  • Did you go to the cinema? No, I didn’t.
  • I didn’t go to school yesterday because I wasn’t feeling very well.


Especially helpful are exercises that are focused on a theme or topic, as these provide word retention practice so you can be confident to read, write, speak, and listen successfully. We have many activities to get your English up to speed in no time.
The more words you encounter and understand, the broader your day-to-day vocabulary will become. Our word games and puzzles are an excellent way to help to reinforce spellings in your mind.
Cambridge English Examinations:

Cambridge English exams are designed for learners at all levels, from the Elementary level Cambridge English: Key (KET) to the very advanced level Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE). These exams give candidates proof of their ability to use English in a wide variety of contexts relevant to work, study and leisure activities.

A2 Key | B1 Preliminary | B2 First

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