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Duration / Repetition

Continuing vs. Reoccurring Activity

Construction workers on the tower of Pisa
 

 

Present Perfect — Nonprogressive vs. Progressive

DURATION

The present perfect (nonprogressive) focuses on the duration of a situation, event or activity.

Engineers have worked to save the Tower of Pisa!  (unspecified past)

Engineers have studied the foundation since 1817.  (unspecified past)

Engineers have applied steel braces.  (unspecified past)

Engineers have stabilized the foundation.  (unspecified past)

Timeline: From1990 tower closed up to now

REPETITION

The present perfect progressive expresses that an activity reoccurs, is repeated.

Engineers have been working to save the Tower of Pisa!

Engineers have been studying the foundation since 1817.

Engineers have been applying steel braces for several months.

Engineers have been stabilizing the foundation since 1838.

past

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Present Perfect

Adverbs for Duration & Repetition

 

 

 

ADVERBS FOR DURATION

Present perfect progressive and nonprogressive are used with adverbs expressing duration or a start time in the past with an indefinite end time.

SINCE/FOR SO FAR /THIS…

Use with activities that began in the past and continue to the present. 

Use with activities that began in the indefinite past and continue to the present.  

since 6:00 AM (exact time – midnight, noon, this morning, July 2012)

so far( to date, up to now, until now)

for a minute (hour, day, week, month, year, decade, the time being)

over the past year (weeks, decades, centuries)

ever since then (Saturday, January, 2009, I met you) 

in my life (second, a while, an hour, the coming week,)

 

tonight(today –a time not yet passed)

 

this week (morning,  evening, week, month, year –a time not yet passed)

ADVERBS FOR FREQUENCY & REPETITION

Present perfect progressive, which expresses repetition and continuation of a situation, is often paired with an adverb of frequency, but not an adverb of repetition. See examples.

FREQUENCY REPETITION

Use with habitual activities that began in the past and continue to present.

Use with nonprogressive verbs to additionally express repetition.

always (routinely, customarily, normally, as a rule)

*repeatedly

usually (most of the time, in general)

*several times (instances, occasions) nonprogressive tense only

often (frequently, half of the time)

*again and again (over and over, time after time)

sometimes (occasionally, on occasion)

continuously (continually)

rarely (seldom, hardly ever, not ever, never)

 

 

* The progressive is not commonly paired with a repetitive adverb.

 

 

 

Adverb Use Examples

PRESENT PERFECT NONPROGRESSIVE

Adverbs used with the simple present perfect clarify the meaning of duration and continuation.  Without the adverb, the meaning may differ. Compare (1) I have worked there. (completed in indefinite past); (2) I have worked there for a year. (duration "up to now", possibly continues)

ADVERBS OF FREQUENCY

They have always  worked to save the Tower of Pisa.

SO FAR

They have worked efficiently so far.

THIS

They have worked very hard this year.

SINCE / FOR

They have worked for twelve years / since 1998.

REPETITION 

They have tried several times to save the Tower of Pisa.

PRESENT PERFECT PROGRESSIVE

Adverbs used with present perfect progressive reinforce (optional use) the meaning of duration and clarify the timing of the situation or activity.

ADVERBS OF FREQUENCY

They have always been working to save the Tower of Pisa.

SO FAR

They have been working efficiently so far.

THIS

They have been working very hard this year.

SINCE / FOR

They have been working for twelve years / since 1998.

REPETITION 

*They have been trying several times to save the Tower of Pisa.

The adverb is unnecessary (and awkward) because the tense already carries the meaning of repetition.

They have been telling people over and over not to worry. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Common Mistakes

Errors and Solutions

 

 

 

Error and Solution

ERROR

We have been going to the beach several times this summer.

I have been knowing him for a long time.

SOLUTION

We have gone to the beach several times this summer.

We have been going to the beach this summer.

I have known him for a long time.

I have been hanging out with him for a long time. (inf.)

Static verbs rarely occur in the progressive form.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice 1

Verb — Adverb Agreement

 

 

 

Select verbs from the menus to create a grammatical sentence. Remember all parts must "agree".

 

A.

B.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice 2

The Tower Restoration

Restoration on Tower of Pisa
 

 

Complete the sentence.

  1. Select the response from the list that best completes the sentence. 
  2. Compare your response to the feedback by clicking the check buttons.

 

1.


Static Verbs - mental states
2.

3.

4.

5.


Static Verbs - mental states 
6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice 3

The Leaning Tower — Before and After

Pisa before and after
 

 

Read for Errors

Restorers have returned the Leaning Tower of Pisa to its former glory after an eight-year restoration project in which they cleaned and partially straightened it.

Workers have been using chisels and hi-tech laser technology to scrub grime from the more than 24,000 blocks of stone on the 183ft tall tower.

The world famous monument has also had its famous lean partially corrected after engineers managed to straighten it by 18 inches from the vertical, returning it to its 1838 position.

"The stones have been in an appalling state, mainly due to air pollution, though tourists and pigeons played a part," explained Anton Sutter, the Swiss-born leader of the 30 million dollar restoration effort.

Sea salt has also been badly damaged the tower —Pisa was once on the coast and became a powerful maritime republic until its harbor silted up.

Now that workers have been completing the restoration, the scaffolding that has surrounded the campanile will be pulled down by a team of mountaineers with knowledge of ropes and climbing.

Tourists have been returning to see the tower, climb the stairs and admire the view.

Staff have restricted the number of visitors per day to slow down the wear and tear on the tower.

The guides for the tower have been offering a video tour as an alternative way to explore the tower without climbing its 296 steps.

"The tower was near collapse, but we managed to stop the tilt and secure it. It's now out of risk for at least the next 200 years," said Giuseppe Bentivoglio, from the Opera Primaziale organization that preserves the tower.

Adapted from — Squires, Nick. "The Slightly Less Leaning Tower of Pisa." The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group, 11 Apr. 0050. Web. 02 Jan. 2014.

alternative (adj.) – another

appalling (adj.) – very unpleasant and shocking

chisel (n.) – a metal tool with a sharp edge, used to cut wood or stone

collapse (n.) – a fallen state

glory (n.) – beauty, elegance, impressive appearance

grime (n.) – dirt, soot, and other filthy matter on the surface of something

lean (n./v.) – tilt; difference from perpendicular state

manage (v.) – arrange to do or complete something

partially – partly; not completely

restore (v.) – return to original state; renew 

restorer (n.) – a worker who renews art, buildings, autos, etc.

risk (n.) –danger, possible injury or harm

scaffolding (n.) – exterior support that the workers stand on; ladders, platforms

scrub – to rub hard with a brush or cloth; clean vigorously

secure (v.) – to make safe (safe from falling)

silt up – fill or leave with fine sand; become land-locked

tilt (n./ v.) – lean; difference from perpendicular state

wear and tear (expression) –slow and continuous destruction

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edit for Errors

  1. Edit the sentence(s) in the text box.
  2. Compare your response to the feedback by clicking the "Check 21-30" button at the bottom, or click the "Check" button to the left  as you go.

 

21.
Restorers have returned the Leaning Tower of Pisa to its former glory after an eight-year restoration project in which they cleaned and partially straightened it.


22.
Workers have been using chisels and hi-tech laser technology to scrub grime from the more than 24,000 blocks of stone on the 183ft tall tower.


23.
The world famous monument has also had its famous lean partially corrected after engineers managed to straighten it by 18 inches from the vertical, returning it to its 1838 position.


24.
"The stones have been in an appalling state, mainly due to air pollution, though tourists and pigeons played a part," explained Anton Sutter, the Swiss-born leader of the 30 million dollar restoration effort.


25.
Sea salt has also badly damaged the tower — Pisa was once on the coast and became a powerful maritime republic until its harbor silted up.


26.
Now that workers have been completing the restoration, the scaffolding that has surrounded the campanile will be pulled down by a team of mountaineers with knowledge of ropes and climbing.


27.
Tourists have been returning to see the tower, climb the stairs and admire the view.


28.
Staff have restricted the number of visitors per day to slow down the wear and tear on the tower.


29.
The guides for the tower have been offering a video tour as an alternative way to explore the tower without climbing its 296 steps.


30.
"The tower was near collapse, but we managed to stop the tilt and secure it. It's now out of risk for at least the next 200 years," said Giuseppe Bentivoglio, from the Opera Primaziale organization that preserves the tower.