• Past Perfect Progressive Tense – Video and Exercise

    This is one of the trickier tenses to learn and master in English and, although it isn’t used a lot, it is still important to understand when, where, and why we use this tense. It really is a lot easier to explain when you see a timeline, so I highly recommend watching the video to understand. Here is an example: I had been jogging for about 3 hours when I saw the truck pull over to the side of the road and throw something out.

    You can see in the above sentence the past perfect progressive is setting the stage or describing the long action in the past that was interrupted by another past action. Why do we use this tense instead of past progressive? I was jogging for 3 hours when I saw the truck pull over….well, it has to do with the reference of time passing. We use the past perfect progressive when there is a specific mention of, ‘how long’ something was happening for in the past. Watch the video and try the exercise below:

    1. We ________________(sleep) for only 2 hours when the train ___________(crash) and woke us up, luckily we weren’t injured.
    2. I _______(talking) to my mother on the other line when you ________(call).
    3. She _____________(study) for five years when she quit suddenly and ______(join) the cult.
    4. I ____________(running) when I ________(break) my ankle.
    5. He ________________ less than 2 hours when his car____________(break down) and left him stranded.

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