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The past and the present tenses share similar patterns of structure and usage. Both the present and past continuous forms use the verb to be, eg. in the present as 'I am' hearing this, in the past as 'I was hearing this'
Both the present perfect and the past perfect use the verb 'to have' eg. in the present perfect, i have been skating, in the past perfect I had been skating.
The same 'to have' verb is shared in the perfect continuous forms also.
When we understand the structural patterns it helps create memory links in the learning of the language.In unit 16 we see the conditionals as well as reported speech. Each of the conditionals have their own rules and usage, which we should be able to teach students if we have enough understanding of them ourselves. As for reported speech, although it may look easy at first glance, can confuse even the most advanced students. This is because of the rules we have to follow, as well as its exceptions. We can also get these wrong if we don't remember that we don't have to change only the verbs and pronouns, but also the time expressions (yesterday-the day before, etc.).