🏁 We can make normal verbs into the past tense by changing the word to an -ed ending.
To walk = I walked to school.
To want = I wanted a new X Box One.
🔆 If you get this one already, go to Skill 30.
🛠 Think you need more? Read on.
When we change verbs to mean something happened in the past, many are easy to change because we just take off a letter or two at the end and write -ed instead. These are the easiest ones to use, e.g.
To move = They moved house last year.
To play = I played the game on my smartphone for hours.
To grasp = My avatar grasped the sword in the video game and fought well.
Some words do have the -ed ending in the past, but you have to change the word a bit first, e.g.
try → tried (here your place the y with -ied). This also applies to words like fry, cry, and so on.
hope → hoped (because the word already has an ‘e‘ at the end you just add an extra ‘d.’ This applies to words like hope and delete.
🎯 📝 As a quick test, write out or say in your head the past form of these sentences:
I walk to the park.
I play with the dog.
You hope to win the lottery.
You try to score the goal.
She moves house in March.
He cries when he peels onions.
They hope to live in Spain by December.
We try to get there on time.
✅ These are really easy so you should have got all of them!
I walked to the park.
I played with the dog.
You hoped to win the lottery.
You tried to score the goal.
She moved house in March.
He cried when he peels onions.
They hoped to live in Spain by December.
We tried to get there on time.
🚦Time for more?
This skill is a quick one to go through. Unfortunately though, English is a mixture of words from lots of languages, so there are many words that don’t have the -ed ending in the past. Because these aren’t as normal as the others, we call them irregular verbs, which we’ll look at in the next skill.
🎓 There are lots of ways to write about the past, and so there are lots of different ways to use verbs. The -ed ending one is part of what we call the simple past. There’s a clear guide to some of the other tenses we use here: