Simple Present Tense Material – Definition, Formulas, Example Problems

Sinaumed’s, do you like to be confused about English tenses? Hmm, it looks really easy, but how come when the question of tenses comes up during an exam, you get confused while remembering the formula.

“Eh, really, isn’t this to be?”

 “Oh, if this one uses ‘s’ or uses ‘ice’ on the back?”

Well, that’s about the confusion that is felt. Why do you get confused automatically like that, like suddenly you feel confused with the correct arrangement or formula of tenses. This can happen if you rarely practice or apply English, Sinaumed’s. Now, let’s discuss one by one!

Definition of Simple Present Tense

The simple present tense is a tense that is used to talk about something common, something that always happens repeatedly, or a general truth. The simple present tense is the tense that is most often used in everyday life.

To recognize that a sentence is simple present tense, there are several ways you can do it, one of which is that the sentence uses the basic form of the verb (Verb 1). The simple present tense is divided into two sentence patterns, namely the verbal simple present and the nominal simple present tense.

For Sinaumed’s, who want to learn the simple present tense as well as various other tenses in English, you can use the book entitled English Grammar and Tenses, For Beginners, written by Regina Fletianti Arindri and the Cemerlang Editorial Team, as a reference. This book explains grammar and tenses in English, for those of you who are beginners and are just learning English. If interested, you can click the “buy now” button below.

Simple Present Tense Videos

For Sinaumed’s who prefer watching videos rather than reading, Sinaumed’s can watch the following Simple Present Tense

Characteristics of Simple Present Tense Sentences

Every English sentence must have characteristics, as well as simple present tense sentences. The characteristics of the simple present tense are as follows.

  1. The predicate in the simple present tense sentence is in the form of Bare Infinitive. The meaning of this form is that the third person verb in this sentence ends with the letter  s, es,  or  ies .
  2. If in the form of a verbal sentence there is an interrogative sentence, then you must add the word  do/does, then add a subject . Meanwhile, nonverbal sentences begin with to be ( am, are, is ).
  3. In simple present tense sentences with negative forms, it is necessary to add the word  do not  (don’t) or  does not (doesn’t). If a verb ends in s/es/ies , it must be omitted.
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The function of the Simple Present Tense

Writing the simple present tense in the form of a sentence has several functions, including:

1. Express Emotions/Feelings

The first function of the simple present tense is to express expressions or feelings. Therefore, when you want to express expressions and feelings through sentences, you can use simple present tense sentences.

2. Commands/Instructions

The simple present tense sentence also functions to express orders or instructions, so we often see an order or instruction using the simple present tense sentence.

3. The Scheduled Event

The function of the next simple present tense sentence is to express an event that will be carried out in the near future.

4.General Truth

The simple present tense sentence also has a function to express a truth that is around us.

5. Repeated Actions

The function of the last simple present tense sentence is to show activities or activities carried out in everyday life.

The Simple Present Tense formula

Simple present tense is divided into simple present verbal and nominal simple present. The verbal simple present tense uses a verb that shows an action or action, while the nominal simple present uses the verb ‘be’ or commonly called to be .

Verbal Simple Presents

Apart from the formula above, other simple present sentences are nominal simple present which use to be . Sentences that use to be generally mean that the verb does not show an action, the formula is:

Present Simple Nominals

Simple Present Tense pattern

Tenses are part of basic grammar. When studying tenses, we will find the terms first person singular/plural, second person singular/plural, and third person singular/plural. Actually what is included in the first person, second person, and third person?

First Person Singular

First person is the first person point of view, in this case designating the speaker (speaker) or the writer (writer) . In the first person singular, the pronoun used is “I” if oneself is the subject, uses “me/my/mine” if oneself is an object, and shows ownership. The situation that usually occurs in the use of the first person singular is when you want to introduce yourself or want to explain yourself.

First Person Plural

The pronoun used for the first person plural is “we” if it is the subject, “us” is the object, and “our/ours” is the ownership. However, “us” and “our/ours” both mean “we” and “us”, so to know which one to use, you have to know the context of the sentence first.

Second Person

Second person is the point of view of the second person, or someone we are talking to at the time. Pronouns used in the second person singular are “You” if as a subject, “Your/Yours” if to show ownership. Just like we/our/ours, You/Your/Yours also means you (singular) or you (plural). The way to find out is to understand the context of what is being said.

Third Person Singular

The pronouns used in the third person singular are He/She/It. The situation that occurs is when we talk about someone who is not present among us.

Third Person Plural

Pronouns used in the third person plural are They/Them/Their. The situation that occurs is when talking about more than one person (two or more people) who is not present among us.

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Examples of Positive Negative and Question Simple Present Tense Sentences

To understand the simple present tense it will be easier if we know some examples.

Simple Present Positive Tense

He is a teacher
She likes burger
I read a book

Simple Present Negative Tense

He is not a teacher
I don’t like burger
I don’t read a book

Simple Present Tense Question

Is he a teacher? (Is she a teacher?)
Does she like burgers? (Does he like burgers?)
Do i read a book? (Did I I read a book?)

Now, Sinaumed’s already understands the theory of Simple Present Tense, right? In order to understand it better, let’s try to look at the discussion below!

Examples of Simple Present Tense Questions

The examples and exercises on the simple present tense here are taken from various modules in the Edutore collection. 

1. … am not hereditary

a. i

b. you

c. he

d. she


“am” is to be which is paired with the subject “I”, so the correct answer to complete the sentence is A. The sentence becomes I am not hereditary.

2. The boy … very polite

a. am

b. is

c. are


Look at the following pairs of subject and to be:

The boy is a single subject. The pronoun that is equivalent to the boy is He, so the to be that follows it is is. So the answer is b. The boy is very polite.

3. They … for three hours every night

a. Study

b. Doesn’t study

c. Studies

d. Is studying


The simple present tense formula is Subject + V1 (s/es) + object .

Subject I/You/We/They, positive verbs are not followed by the affix s/es

Subject He/She/It, positive verbs followed by the affix s/es.

They are the subject and the verb is not followed by s/es. Then the correct answer is A. Study

4. Most animals … only for food

a. Kill

b. Kills

c. Killes

d. killed


This sentence states a general truth, that most animals kill just to get food. So, this sentence is written in the present tense. The correct verb for the subject most animals is kill. So the answer is a. Most animals kill only for food.

5. Reni : (1) … you know where my dictionary is?

Tika : Sorry, I don’t know where it is.

The answer for number (1) is …

a. Do

b. Does

c. Is

d. Are


To form interrogative sentences in the simple present tense, we use do or does. The correct auxiliary verb for the subject “you” is do. So the answer is a. Do.

The book entitled Tenses Review from Dr. Arif Yosodiputro Mm also contains various practice questions that you can use to practice your tenses skills. In addition, there is also a brief review and basic vocabulary in each chapter. For Sinaumed’s who want to master the understanding of tenses, they can buy this book by clicking “buy now” below.

How about it, Sinaumed’s? It’s easy to understand the simple present tense, isn’t it? So, the conclusion is that the simple present tense is a tense that expresses routine or recurring events, not events that are currently happening. Well, keep in mind also that the simple present tense uses a basic verb, both verb1 and to be in the first form.