Unit 5.2

Present Continuous Interrogative

Tenses

The present continuous (or progressive) is the tense used to express situations that are happening now (before, during and after the moment of speaking).

When expressed in its interrogative form, it is used to form questions about something that is happening now.

The present continuous, in its interrogative form, has this structure:
To be + subject + [verb + -ing] + …?

To beSubjectVerb + -ingQuestion
Mark
AmIworking?
Areyouworking?
Isheworking?
Issheworking?
Isitworking?
Areweworking?
Areyouworking?
Aretheyworking?

{For the exceptions see the affirmative form of present continuous}.

  1. Actions happening at the moment of speaking
    • Am I eating an apple?
    • Is she watching TV at the moment?
    • Am I using the dictionary correctly?
  2. Actions that are planned for the future
    • Am I fixing the shelves tonight?
    • Is he buying a computer at the weekend?
    • Are we repeating the class next week?
  3. Changes and tendencies
    • Am I getting happier and happier?
    • Am I becoming better at sitting exams? 
    • Is the teacher improving her classes? 
  4. Consistency of the events
    • Why am I always doing homework? 
    • Is the student asking questions repeatedly?
    • Am I always photocopying worksheets for you?
  5. Temporary activities.
    • Is he looking for the map?
    •  Am I buying some pens?
    • Are the classmates working in groups?

We use present continuous, in its interrogative form, to ask about:

  1. Actions happening at the moment of speaking;
  2. Actions that are planned for the future;
  3. Changes and tendencies;
  4. Consistency of the events;
  5. Temporary activities (that will finish in the future);

The present continuous, in the interrogative form, is used to ask about situations that are going on around the moment of speaking.

When we use the present continuous in its interrogative form, we start with the verb to be followed by the subject and a verb that ends with -ing (the sentence ends with a question mark).

For example:
— “Are you eating?” = We use the present continuous to ask about an action that takes place whilst talking (in that moment).
♦ “Do you eat?” = We use the present simple to ask about an action that happens repeatedly or always in the present.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

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