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Verb Tense Consistency

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Elizabeth Suchanski

on 18 November 2014

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Transcript of Verb Tense Consistency

Verb Tense Consistency
*
Careful writers avoid shifts in verb tense unless there is a good reason.
*
Is this taking place now??? Or in the past???

Why???
A verb’s tense lets the reader UNDERSTAND when the action is taking place.

“It was a bitter cold night for speed skating, but the three teams gave their all for the regional competition. Most surprising was the performance of Coolidge High, which outskated the other two teams in every category. They were the easy winners.”

Acceptable Tense Shift:
The Wizard of Oz
IS
a film that has enchanted audiences since
it was made
in 1936.
The verb was made refers to an action that occurred in 1936; whereas, is indicates a present interest in the film.
WHY?!!!!!???????!!!
It Can Happen in Just One Sentence!
We
VIEWED
A Caribbean Mystery
and
watch
intently as Joan Hickson
portrays
Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple.
AGAIN! WHYYYYYYYY!!???
Viewed refers to action that happened in the past. It is incorrect to shift to the present tense (watch and portrays) when the remaining action within the sentence also occurred in the past.
HOW
to avoid Tense Shifting:
Once you use a verb tense, maintain it consistently.
Let's Try A Few
1. The most significant challenge I
encountered
while volunteering at the senior community center was when I just
become
a volunteer.
2. Bill

dreamed

of getting into university, but his dream
comes
true.
3. When I

began

working as a waitress, I

hate
my job.
4. I

walked

down to the edge of the water and

dipped

my toe in. Suddenly, out of nowhere, Jason

grabs
my arm and

pushes

me in the pool
5.While Barbara

puts
in her contact lenses, the telephone
rang
6. I
was
terribly disappointed with my grade because I
studied
very hard.
7. The boy
insisted
that he
has paid
for the candy bars.
8.Everyone
hopes
the plan
would
work.
9.The doctor
suggested
bed rest for the patient, who
suffers
from a bad cold.
10. If the club
limited
its membership, it
will
have to raise its dues
Answers:
10. If the club limited its membership, it
would
have to raise its dues.
1. The most significant challenge I encountered while volunteering at the senior community center was when I just
became
a volunteer.
2. Bill dreamed of getting into university, but his dream
came
true.
3. When I began working as a waitress, I
hated
my job.
5. While Barbara puts in her contact lenses, the telephone
rings.
6. I was terribly disappointed with my grade because I
had studied
very hard.
7. The boy insisted that he
had paid
for the candy bars.
8. Everyone
hoped
the plan would work
9. The doctor
suggested
bed rest for the patient, who suffered from a bad cold.
4. I walked down to the edge of the water and dipped my toe in. Suddenly, out of nowhere, Jason
grabbed
my arm and
pushed
me in the pool!
THE END
In a passage where an unnecessary shift has occurred, go through and highlight each of the verbs and verb phrases.
Change the tense of the inconsistent verbs or verb phrases to align them with the primary tense that has already been established.
Reread the passage aloud and
listen for consistency in verb tense.
Refer to a list of irregular verbs in a dictionary or style guide as an aid for choosing the proper form of the verb.
Your Turn: What's the problem?

“Johnson raced down the court. He stops dead, raises those incredibly long arms, and sinks the ball slow-motion into the basket. He scored 33 points before the final quarter ended.”
“Johnson raced down the court. He stops dead, raises those incredibly long arms, and sinks the ball slow-motion into the basket. He scored 33 points before the final quarter ended.”
Let's Look Back at the Inconsistent
Paragraph from Yesterday

Copy down the paragraph in your writing notebook.

Underline the inconsistent verbs FIRST.

Then, rewrite the paragraph so that all verbs are in the same tense.

Questions????
Ready to try on your own?
By the end of this video, you will understand what it means to keep your verb tense consistent and have practice identifying inconsistent verbs.
As we go through the video, remember the following:
Stop and take notes when you see the or the if you are supposed to highlight.
Power of the Pause: pause as often as you need to!
Use the rule of 5: write down the ideas in your own words using 5 words or less.
Shift: a change
Verb Tense: past, present, future, etc.
Definitions:
eat
eating
ate
has eaten
will eat
had eaten
--What tense are ALL the verbs in?
Past, present, or future?

Look at the following paragraph
Suddenly switching tense can be a
Major Problem

as it will surely

Confuse

readers
.
Most stories are told in PAST tense, but some are told in PRESENT tense.
Check your verb tense by highlighting all the verbs to see if they are all in the same tense.
You've finished watching!

Last Steps: Write your summary for the video on your note page as well as your HOT question.

Make sure your notes are complete, and submit them to Schoog before you come to class.

If you used a paper copy of the guided notes, take a good quality picture, load them into Notability, and make the picture large enough to fill the page before submitting it.
Your Turn: On your notes, correct this paragraph so that it is either all in PAST or PRESENT tense.
Your Turn Practice!
Write about what you did today--twice. It can be fictional.
Once in past tense
Once in present tense.
I discovered that I had a blue dot growing on my hand. I went to the doctor and she said I needed to stop eating so many blue M&Ms. Because of that, I switched to red M&Ms. The next day, a red dot started growing on my hand. Oops!
I discover that I have a blue dot growing on my hand. I go to the doctor and she says I need to stop eating so many blue M&Ms. Because of that, I switch to red M&Ms. The next day, a red dot starts growing on my hand. Oops!
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