Dec 12, 2010

New Moon: Present Perfect x Present Perfect Continuous

The Twilight saga is attractive to students and provides us with different sources for activities. I like it a lot. It is my teen side speaking out loud! I used this scene to practice the difference between the present perfect and the present perfect continuous forms.


  1. Have you ever suffered because of a broken heart?
  2. How do you react in those moments? Do you prefer to stay home by yourself or go out with friends to have a lot of fun? Explain it?
  3. what is worse? To dump or to be dumped? Why?

I. Watch the movie segment and complete the blanks with either the present perfect or the present perfect continuous form of the given verbs. When both are possible, use the continuous form.

1. Bella _________________ (feel) sad for several months.

2. The weather ______________ (change) significantly in this period of time.

3. Both her boyfriend and her best friend, Alice, _________ (leave) Bella alone.

4. The tree leaves ___________ (fall).

5. It ____________ (snow) several times in December.

6. Bella _____________ (miss) her boyfriend all this time.

7. According to Bella, a huge hole ___________ (punch - passive voice) through her chest.

8. She ___________ (cry) several nights since October.

9. She _____________ (write) emails that Alice ____________ (never - receive)

10. Bella's dad ____________ (be) worried about her.

II. Talk to a partner:

1. What should Bella do in order not to be so sad?

2. Is Bella right to react the way she did or is it better to go out with friends and forget about her boyfriend?

3. What would you do if you were in Bella's shoes?

4. Have you ever felt like Bella? Talk about it, if you wish.



Answer key:

I. 1. has been feeling / 2. has changed / 3. have left / 4. have fallen / 5. has snowed / 6. has been missing / 7. has been punched / 8. has cried / 9 . has been writing - has never received / 10. has been


Ana Silva said...

I do love all your activities..I like working with commercial films because I think they´re more appaling to students and also much more up to date..I love all kinds of films ..thanks for our help...
Anna Silva

Ana Silva said...

I do love all your activities..I like working with commercial films because I think they´re more appaling to students and also much more up to date..I love all kinds of films ..thanks for our help...
Anna Silva

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks, Anna. I'm glad you enjoy and use them.

Daniella said...

Can you explain me why should I use Present Perfect in 4,5 and 8 sentence?Present Perfect Continuous shows us that the action that had taken place has just finished and we use it to show how long something happened.And to my mind it is better to use Present Perfect Continuous in 4,5,8.If not please answer me.

Claudio Azevedo said...

Hi Daniella,
What is great about this segment is exactly the fact that it illustrates the difference between the perfect and continuous tenses. In the items you mentioned, the actions are finished, so the use of the present perfect continuous is not possible. For example, it has already stopped snowing, so the continuous form is not possible. I hope I have been helpful. See you.

kbSalamanca said...


Thanks for all your hard work! These activities are very useful and my students love them.

I would like to make a comment about why we have to use the present perfect simple in number 5.

It´s not because it has stopped snowing. Think about this example. You wake up in the morning and the ground in covered in snow. You say "wow, it looks like it´s been snowing all night". That doesn´t mean that it is still snowing.

The present perfect continuous is not possible in number 5 because of the phrase "several times". When we say that something has been repeated we have to use the present perfect simple. E.g. I´ve seen that movie 10 times or I´ve called you 5 times. "I´ve been calling you 5 times" would be incorrect while "I´ve been calling you" (without saying how many times) is fine.

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks for the comment.
I don't quite understand your comment about item 5. The answer key show "has snowed", just the way you mentioned here. That's why the expression "several times" was included in the sentence. Are we in sync?
Addressing the first part of the comment, though, saying "it looks" like it has been snowing all night conveys a different meaning from "it has" been snowing all night. When you say "it looks"... the idea is that of your perception of what you are seeing at that moment - that it has been snowing all night. But it does not have the same meaning as "it has been snowing all night".

Maritere Herrera said...

I love all of your activities and my students love them too. I have noticed that there is no movie segment file to download in some of them. I have already downloaded realplayer as you suggested to someone else but I still cannot download them. Can you help me with that? Can you give me the name of the video on youtube? I would really appreciate it :D

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks, Maritere
I started adding the direct dowloads only after CLUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS post. It is too time consuming to add all the previous ones. Anyway, an alternative is download helper. It also works very well. But the tips are here:

Anonymous said...

How do I download this movie segment?

Claudio Azevedo said...

Check the link at the end of the post. You can download it there.

Unknown said...

First i just wanna say thank you for the time and effort that you have put in to making these worksheets. I have a question about sentence 4. You stated that the reason that the present perfect is used is because action has ended and though I understand that, I do not understand what information in this sentence shows that the action has ended and that the present perfect continuous could not also be used? Any clarification you could give me would be greatly appreciated. thanks again for your time.

Claudio Azevedo said...

The leaves are not falling anymore. They fell when it was Fall. In winter, they have already fallen. Anyway, you can discuss it with the students, of course. If they agree that the leaves are still falling, the the continuous form is fine.