The Past Perfect Tense

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1 1 The Past Perfect Tense When do you use the past perfect? Let s watch a video. Past Perfect We don't use the past perfect a lot in English. Actually it's really easy to make - just the past simple of 'have' and the past participle. 1: A completed action before something else in the past. When we arrived, the film had started. (= first the film started, then later we arrived) 2: To explain or give a reason for something in the past. I'd eaten dinner so I wasn't hungry. It had snowed in the night, so the bus didn't arrive. 3: Stative verbs only: something that started in the past and continued up to another action in the past. When he graduated, he had been in London for six years. (= he arrived in London six years before he graduated and lived there continuously until he graduated, or even longer) 4: As part of the third conditional. If I had known you were ill, I would have visited you. LET S PRACTISE IT A LITTLE BIT. 1. Choose the past perfect, or the past simple: 1. We had already eaten when John (come) home. 2. Last year Juan (pass) all his exams. 3. When I (get) to the airport I discovered I had forgotten my passport.

2 2 4. I went to the library, then I (buy) some milk and went home. 5. I opened my handbag to find that I (forgot) my credit card. 6. When we (arrive) at the station, the train had already left. 7. We got home to find that someone (break) into the house. 8. I opened the fridge to find someone (eat) all my chocolate. 9. I had known my husband for three years when we (get) married. 10. Julie was very pleased to see that John (clean) the kitchen. Source: 2. Group work: Complete the following situations: A. A man arrived home having left his new puppy on its own for the first time. Start: When he arrived home he saw... B. A teacher came back into the class and realized she shouldn t have left the students on their own for that long. Start: She walked back in and saw Gap fill exercise This happened about two years ago when I (work) for a small family-owned business in London. It was a Friday afternoon and I (take) a tea break. I (do) the stocktaking all day and I was tired. The boss (go) out at lunchtime and hadn t come back yet. But that was quite normal as he usually took long lunches.

3 3 I (just / finish) my tea and was about to go back to work when a young man (walk) into the office and asked for dad. When I asked him who he meant he said, Arthur, the boss. Then he said, Oh, you re new, aren t you? Which was true as I (work) there a few weeks. I told him Arthur (go) and asked if I could help. He said he needed to pick something up from Arthur s office and went in. He (leave) a few minutes later and asked me to tell his dad he (be) in and would call him later. When the boss came back I (tell) him his son (be) in. He looked very surprised and said he hadn't got a son.he then looked in the office and (find) that his briefcase and some cash (steal). 4. Reading time! The mystery story Last night I was walking home next to the river Thames, when something strange happened to me. It was late at night and I d had a long and difficult day at work. There was a large full moon in the sky and everything was quiet. I was tired and lonely and I d just had a few pints of beer in my local pub, so I decided to stop by the riverside and look at the moon for a while. I sat on some steps very close to the water s edge and looked up at the big yellow moon and wondered if it really was made of cheese. I felt very tired so I closed my eyes and after a few minutes, I fell asleep. When I woke up, the moon had moved behind a cloud and it was very dark and cold. The wind was blowing and an owl hooted in a tree above me. I rubbed my eyes and started to get up, when suddenly I heard a splash. I looked down at the water and saw something. Something

4 4 terrible and frightening, something I had never seen before. Something was coming out of the water and moving towards me. Something green and strange and ugly. It was a long green arm and it was stretching out from the water to grab my leg. I was so scared that I couldn t move. I d never been so scared in my whole life. The cold green hand was moving closer and closer when suddenly there was a blue flash and a strange noise from behind me. Someone jumped onto the stairs next to me. He was wearing strange clothes and he had a crazy look in his eyes. He shouted Get Back! and pointed something at the monster in the water. There was a bright flash and the monster hissed and disappeared. I looked up at the man. He looked strange, but kind. Don t fall asleep by the river when there s a full moon, he said The Moon Goblins will get you. I d never heard of moon goblins before. I didn t know what to do. Who who are you? I asked him. You can call me The Doctor. He said. I was trying to think of something else to say when he turned around and said, Watch the stars at night, and be careful of the full moon. I was trying to understand what he meant, when there was another blue flash and I closed my eyes. When I opened them again, he had gone. I couldn t believe what had happened. What on earth were Moon Goblins, and who was the mysterious Doctor? And why had he saved me? I was determined to find the answers to these strange questions. I stood up, looked at the moon and quickly walked home. Glossary: 1.hoot: v. if an owl hoots, it makes a long 'oo' sound. 2. hiss: v. to make a noise which sounds like 'ssss'. 3. goblin:n. a small ugly creature in children's stories that likes to trick people. Discussion time! 1. Where did the story take place? 2. Why was the protagonist tired? 3. Why did he stop by the river? 4. What happened to him when he woke up? 5. Do you know any similar story from your country? 6. Did anybody in your family use to tell you stories like this one when you were a kid? If so, how did you feel about it? Did you believe them?

5 5 7. Writing time! IN THIS EXERCISE YOU ARE GIVEN THE BEGINNING OF THE STORY. YOU HAVE TO CONTINUE IT. USE THE FOLLOWING WORDS: HEALTHY SPICY PECKISH LITTLE A LOT OF A FEW The mysterious waiter John had had a long working day. When he left the office he called his wife and invited her to dine out. She accepted the invitation cheerfully. The agreed on meeting at 7 p.m. at Jack s restaurant, located opposite the lake. Lots of strange stories about the lake were told by the locals, but neither John nor his wife Jane believed in them.

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