Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Season 2 – Episode 20 – Present Perfect With For & Since

The second installment of what’s going to be three episodes on the present perfect tense — an often wildly confusing concept that most non-nes students (and even NES students) fail to understand.

Let’s take a look at some sentences.

I’ve had a bad cold for a week. 

I’ve had a bad cold since last Friday. 

We use since for moments in time. 

We use for….for periods of time. 

It’s as simple as that.

Example, if something happened in the past and continues to today, you would use the present perfect tense.  Of course the present perfect continuous tense is another wildly confusing tense, but we’ll get into that in the next season.

Put the time expressions down below in the correct column.

5 o’clock, 15th of May, 2003, an hour, five years, Monday, ten seconds, the age of 15, the day I met you, three days. 

For                                       Since

20 minutes (ex)


Complete the sentences with information about you.

  1. I ______________________(know) my English teacher for ______________________.
  2. I ______________________(live) in this area since ______________________.
  3. I ______________________(have) this watch for ______________________.
  4. I ______________________(be) able to swim since _____________________.
  5. I ______________________(live) in my home for ___________________.



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