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Use Verb Tenses Consistently

In this worksheet, students identify and correct sentences with errors in the use of present and past tense.

'Use Verb Tenses Consistently' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Writing: Vocabulary, Grammar and Punctuation

Curriculum subtopic:   Tense Awareness

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

When we talk or write about something that is happening now, we use the present tense.

 

Jack is playing his violin. He practises every day.

 

When we talk or write about something that has already happened, we use the past tense.

Jack played his violin at the school concert last week.

 

Stories are usually written in the past tense, but it is easy to get muddled up and start writing in the present tense by mistake.

Read this sentence and decide whether it is written in the present tense or the past tense.

 

The boys crept up to the window and peered through into the dark room.

 

 

present tense

past tense

Read these sentences and decide whether they are written in the present tense or the past tense.

 

Kerry and Jessica love ballet. They go to lessons every week.

ballet

present tense

past tense

Read this sentence and decide whether it is written in the present tense or the past tense.

 

Rosie ran upstairs and slammed her bedroom door.

door

present tense

past tense

The verbs in this sentence should be in the past tense but one of them is in the present tense. Which one is wrong?

 

Molly finished her breakfast, tied up her shoes and goes out of the house.

house

finished

tied

goes

Which verb is wrong this time?

 

Tommy and Jason ran through the woods, their hearts pounding. Suddenly Jason tripped over a tree root and falls to the ground.

woods

ran

tripped

falls

This report about hedgehogs should be in the present tense but one verb is in the past tense by mistake. Which one?

 

Hedgehogs have thousands of prickles to protect them from enemies. They live in gardens and hibernated in the winter.

 

hedgehog

have

live

hibernated

This time, rewrite the sentence correctly in the past tense.

 

Jodie and Dale went out of the shop and walk down the street.

shop

Rewrite the sentence correctly in the past tense.

 

The lion stood up, stretched its claws and roars at the people peering through the bars of its cage.

 

lion

This time, rewrite the second sentence correctly in the present tense.

 

Kangaroos are found in Australia. Kangaroo babies are called Joeys and the mothers carried them around in pouches.

 

kangaroo

Rewrite the third sentence correctly in the past tense.

 

Laura looked around. She was sure she could hear footsteps coming up behind her. Suddenly she sees a shadow dart between the trees. She screamed.

trees

  • Question 1

Read this sentence and decide whether it is written in the present tense or the past tense.

 

The boys crept up to the window and peered through into the dark room.

 

 

CORRECT ANSWER
past tense
EDDIE SAYS
The verbs 'crept' and 'peered' are in the past tense.
  • Question 2

Read these sentences and decide whether they are written in the present tense or the past tense.

 

Kerry and Jessica love ballet. They go to lessons every week.

ballet

CORRECT ANSWER
present tense
EDDIE SAYS
The verbs 'love' and 'go' are in the present tense.
  • Question 3

Read this sentence and decide whether it is written in the present tense or the past tense.

 

Rosie ran upstairs and slammed her bedroom door.

door

CORRECT ANSWER
past tense
EDDIE SAYS
The verbs 'ran' and 'slammed' are in the past tense.
  • Question 4

The verbs in this sentence should be in the past tense but one of them is in the present tense. Which one is wrong?

 

Molly finished her breakfast, tied up her shoes and goes out of the house.

house

CORRECT ANSWER
goes
EDDIE SAYS
How did you get on? It should be 'went out of the house'.
  • Question 5

Which verb is wrong this time?

 

Tommy and Jason ran through the woods, their hearts pounding. Suddenly Jason tripped over a tree root and falls to the ground.

woods

CORRECT ANSWER
falls
EDDIE SAYS
Poor Jason, I hope he's ok! Did you spot the wrong verb? It should be 'fell to the ground'.
  • Question 6

This report about hedgehogs should be in the present tense but one verb is in the past tense by mistake. Which one?

 

Hedgehogs have thousands of prickles to protect them from enemies. They live in gardens and hibernated in the winter.

 

hedgehog

CORRECT ANSWER
hibernated
EDDIE SAYS
Wow, look at those prickles! Did you spot the wrong verb? It should be 'hibernate in the winter'.
  • Question 7

This time, rewrite the sentence correctly in the past tense.

 

Jodie and Dale went out of the shop and walk down the street.

shop

CORRECT ANSWER
Jodie and Dale went out of the shop and walked down the street.
EDDIE SAYS
How did you get on? The verb 'walk' changes to 'walked' to be in the past tense.
  • Question 8

Rewrite the sentence correctly in the past tense.

 

The lion stood up, stretched its claws and roars at the people peering through the bars of its cage.

 

lion

CORRECT ANSWER
The lion stood up, stretched its claws and roared at the people peering through the bars of its cage.
EDDIE SAYS
This lion is looking very fierce and look at those teeth! The verb 'roars' needed to be changed to 'roared' to change it to the past tense.
  • Question 9

This time, rewrite the second sentence correctly in the present tense.

 

Kangaroos are found in Australia. Kangaroo babies are called Joeys and the mothers carried them around in pouches.

 

kangaroo

CORRECT ANSWER
Kangaroo babies are called Joeys and the mothers carry them around in pouches.
EDDIE SAYS
This little Joey looks nice and cosy in their mother's pouch! The verb 'carried' changes to 'carry' to be in the present tense.
  • Question 10

Rewrite the third sentence correctly in the past tense.

 

Laura looked around. She was sure she could hear footsteps coming up behind her. Suddenly she sees a shadow dart between the trees. She screamed.

trees

CORRECT ANSWER
Suddenly she saw a shadow dart between the trees.
EDDIE SAYS
Who is following Laura? The verb 'sees' changes to 'saw' for this sentence to make sense.
---- OR ----

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