Grammar focus

Present Perfect for Life Experience


We use the present perfect verb form to talk about or ask questions about life experience.
We often use the question: "Have you ever...?"

We form the present perfect using the auxiliary "have" and the past participle of the main verb.
Here is a link to a list of irregular verbs.

Examples:
Have you ever eaten snails? Yes, I have. I tried them in France.
Have you ever danced the tango? No, I haven't. I can't dance!
Has she ever been to Japan? Yes, she has. She went there in 2006.
Has he ever watched a movie in English? No, he hasn't. He prefers to watch films in French.

Summary of the present perfect:
 AffirmativeNegative
Question
Short answer
 I have (I've) seen this film.
 I haven't seen this film.
Have you seen this film?
Yes, I have / No, I haven't
 You have (You've) eaten snails!
 You haven't eaten snails.
 Have I eaten snails?
Yes, you have / No, you haven't
 He has (He's) been to Thailand.
 He hasn't been to Thailand.
 Has he been to Thailand?
 Yes, he has / No, he hasn't
 We have (We've) visited London.
 We haven't visited London.
 Have you visited London?
Yes, we have / No, we haven't
 They have (They've) seen a UFO!
 They haven't seen a UFO.
 Have they seen a UFO?
Yes, they have / No, they haven't

Exercise 1: Put the verbs into the present perfect form to complete the questions and sentences.

1. I ____ never ______ to China, but I ___________ Japan. (be, visit)
2. _____ Jane ______ the Taj Mahal? No, she _______, but she __________ to India. (see, be)
3. ______ you ever ________ octopus? Yes, I ________, but I didn't like it. (try)
4. Jack ____ never ________ meat. He________ a strict vegetarian all his life. (eat, be)
5. ______ you _______ the new James Bond film? No, I __________. Is it good? (see)
6. _______ you ever _________ squash? Yes, I ________. I loved it. (play)
7. My parents _______ never ________ abroad. They don't even have passports! (travel)
8. She ___________ to Scotland, but she ____________ the highest mountain in Wales. (not be, climb)

Now check your answers.

Exercise 2: Answer these questions about yourself.

1. Which countries have you visited?
2. Have you ever eaten some unusual food?
3. Have you ever bought something and never used it?
4. Have you travelled to a different continent?
5. Have you ever sung in a choir?
6. Have you seen all the Harry Potter movies?
7. Have you ever studied another language, other than English?
8. Which places have you been to in your own country?
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