Third Person Singular - Present Tense

The third person singular form of the simple Present tense is one that students commonly get wrong.

That's the one that says "He/She/It..." does something.

It's understandable, but it's a shame - because it's very easy to fix!

Open Argot Top Tip!

The rule is really straightforward!

In the present simple tense, we always use the base form of the verb.  That's the one in the infinitive - to run, to eat, to decide, to want...

For I, you, we, they - that's all you need:

I run, we eat, they sing, you want, we decide

For he, she, or it, we add an -s:

He runs, she eats, it wants, she sings, he decides

That's it!

Third Person Singular - Present Tense

The above is a very good approximation to how we form the simple present tense in English.

Of course, being English, it does have a few exceptions 😉

The verbs 'to be' and 'to have' are irregular.  You already know that they go:

  • I am, you are, he/she/it is, we are, they are

  • I have, you have, he/she/it has, we have, they have

In addition, remember that the modal verbs (can, should, may, might, must...) don't change their endings at all. 

So we never say he cans, she musts and so on.

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