Tense helps the reader better understand the action of any verb.

The tense of any verb indicates to the reader when the action of the verb happens. Tenses are one of the main triggers for your audience. It can help an author build suspense, foreshadow, or reflect. It is one of those little things in written work that are often overlooked. There are three main tenses. The present is used to describe something that currently active or is constant. The future tense indicates something that will occur in the future or is imminent. You can also use the future tense if the odds are good that something will happen. The past tense is used to reflect on actions that have already taken place and ended. This is often used to describe situations and reflect on history.

Tenses of verbs are displayed at the ending of the words. For past form -ed is often found on the end of words. For present form -s is often found on the end. In most cases, you are going to want to keep your use of tenses consistent, but there are times when changing tense is required. This is often the result of a time shift from the past to present. Learning to master the words that result from a shift in tense, is the key to being highly proficient. These language arts worksheets start by working on exercises that have students identify the nature and timing of an action. Students will be assigned the task of determining the relative timing of the action. We will then turn on student creativity through the use of having them use this skill in their own writing. The worksheets get even more imaginative and engaging for students when we have them work on this skill by following a series of written directions. In addition to the relative timing of words we introduce the concept of the progressive tense.

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Printable Verb Tense Worksheets

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Past, Present, Future

Circle the action verb in each sentence. On the line, write whether the verb is past, present, or future form.

When Did It Happen?

Write on the line the form that the underlined word takes on in the sentence.

Writing Using Verb Tenses

Write a paragraph about how you feel about school right now, how you have felt about school in the past, and how you think you will feel about school in the future.

Three Sentences

Write three sentences to describe each picture each using a different relative time.

Describe the When

Use the context that is presented in each statement to choose the correct word to complete it.

Picture This!

Write a sentence to describe what is happening in each picture. Use the words found in the parentheses.

Choosing Based on Context

Choose the correct verb to match the form in parentheses.

Correct It!

Choose the correct word to complete each sentence.

Actions and Timings

Write a sentence using an action verb in each form that is given.

Practice Worksheet

Choose the correct verb tense to complete each sentence.

Recognizing Verb Tense

Circle the present tense verbs. Draw a square around the past. Draw a triangle around the future.

Verb Tense Worksheet

Write each of the verbs from the sentences above in the correct column. Then fill in the other columns for each word.

Perfect Tenses

Use the perfect tense to complete each sentence. Use the same form as the word you are replacing.

Progressive Verb Tenses

Use the progressive tense to complete each sentence. It is a very similar task as the previous worksheet, just different context.

What Is It?

Write on the line whether the underlined verb is in the present, past, or future simple, perfect, or progressive tense.