Grammar Tutorial: Simple Past Tense

Simple past tense is used when the action referred to happened in the past.

Example: They walked to the police station yesterday.

In this example, the verb walk is added with “ed” since the situation happened the day before. This is indicated by “yesterday.”

Rules in Forming the Verbs

a.) Verbs ending in e are usually just appended by -d.

Examples

  • dive – dived
  • tie – tied
  • carve – carved

b.) Verbs ending in a consonant preceded by a single stressed vowel double the consonant in the past tense.

Examples

  • hop – hopped
  • stop – stopped
  • fit – fitted

b.) Most verbs that end in y change the y into -ied

Examples

  • Hurry – hurried
  • Bury – buried
  • Reply – replied
  • Worry – worried

c.) In regular verbs, the past simple ends in -ed

Examples

walk – walked
talk – talked
worship – worshiped
wash – washed

d.) Some verbs are irregular

Examples

  • write – wrote
  • see – saw
  • go – went
  • throw – threw
  • cost – cost
  • hit – hit

Quiz for simple past tense

1. Linda ______ in my house last week.

a. stay
b. stayd
c. stayed

Answer
c. stayed

2. I ______ the bunny at Nordstrom’s.

a. buyed
b. bawt
c. bought

Answer
c. bought

3. He just ______ “Hi.”

a. said
b. sayed
c. sought

Answer
a. said

4. I ______ the article in the newspaper.

a. read
b. red
c. readed

Answer
a. read

5. She ______ 10 gifts.

a. choosed
b. chosed
c. chose

Answer
c. chose

6. The water rise during the 1962 floods ______ about 10 feet.

a. rise
b. rised
c. rose

Answer
c. rose

7. Andy ______four chicken legs and one chicken breast.

a. fried
b. freid
c. freed

Answer
a. fried

8. He ______ the glass by accidentally knocking it over with his elbow.

a. broke
b. brake
c. broked

Answer
a. broke

9. How did they send the letter?
They ______ the letter by airmail.

a. saint
b. sent
c. sunt

Answer
b. sent

10. I ______ that Japanese would be hard for me to learn.

a. knew
b. know
c. knowed

Answer
a. knew

Now, what’s your score?

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