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You are here: Level A2 > Past continuous tense


                              Past continuous tense



We use 'past continuous tense' when talking about an action happening at a certain moment in the past ( I was having lunch at 1pm yesterday)

or when 2 actions happened at the same time (I was driving to work when I saw a fox in the road)

The longer action is in Past continuous ( I was driving to work) and the completed one is in Past simple ( I saw a fox).


was/were + verb + ing


(at certain time)

I was going shopping at 8am.

You were swimming at 4pm.

He was reading on the bus yesterday.

She was driving to work last week.

It was snowing last night.

We were watching TV at 10pm on Monday.

They were playing rugby all morning today.

(2 actions happening in the past)

It was raining when I got up this morning.

You were driving when I called you earlier.

He was learning English grammar when I arrived.

She was playing the piano when the phone rang.

We were making dinner when you came.

They were having a coffee break when the boss saw them.

Negative sentences

I wasn't sleeping when the alarm clock went off.

You weren't watching the news when your parents walked in.

He wasn't doing his homework when his father called.

She wasn't drinking when she sprained her ankle.

It wasn't raining when I looked out of the window.

We weren't doing any work when the boss came.

They weren't driving when the car crash happened.


Were you driving when you hit the curb?

Was he playing the violin when you came?

Was she having lunch when it happened?

Were they sleeping when the burglar alarm went off?