English Grammar Exercises for A2 – Past continuous

1. Complete the sentences with the past continuous form of the verbs in brackets.

Yesterday at 6 p.m. we ______________ (have) dinner.

Harry ______________ (not listen) so he didn’t know how to do the exercise.

Kate ______________ (lie) on the beach and Anna ______________ (eat) an ice cream.

Sam and Ryan ______________ (smile) and Nancy (take) a photo of them.

Why ______________ you and Zoe ______________ (argue)?

Hannah was annoyed because a man on the train ______________ (talk) loudly on his mobile.

At 1 a.m. Fred ______________ still ______________ (chat) with his friends on Facebook.

eyes were closed, but I ______________ (not sleep).

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1 were having   2 wasn’t listening

3 was lying, was eating   4 were smiling, was taking

5 were ___ arguing   6 was talking   7 was ___ chatting

8 wasn’t sleeping

2. Write sentences. Use the past continuous.

1 Jake / ride / his bike

     Jake was riding his bike.

2 the sun / shine?

  ________

3 it / not rain

  ________

4 where / he / go ?

  ________

5 he / not wear / a helmet

     ________

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2 Was the sun shining?   3 it wasn’t raining.

4 Where was he going?   5 he wasn’t wearing a helmet.

3. Complete the text with the past continuous form of the verbs below.

carry      follow      hurry      leave      rain      stand      wear      not wear

When I got off the coach in London, the weather was awful. It 1 _____. and there was a cold wind. A short, fat man, who 2 _____. a hat and 3 _____. a small briefcase, got off after me. It was five o’clock and lots of people 4 _____. work and 5 _____. to catch the bus or the Underground. I 6 _____. a raincoat so I went into a department store and bought a cheap umbrella. When I came out, the short, fat man from the bus 7 _____. outside the department store. 8 _____. he ________. me?

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1 was raining   2 was wearing   3 carrying

4 were leaving   5 hurrying   6 wasn’t wearing

7 was standing   8 Was ___ following

4. What was happening at the park yesterday afternoon? Complete the sentences, using the verbs and phrases below. Use the past continuous.

eat an ice cream      drink fruit juice      have a picnic      listen to music

phone someone      read a magazine      shine      sunbathe      text

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1   Tom was texting.

2   Will and Emma ________

3   Kim ________

4   Max and Eve ________

5   George and Susan ________

6   Jay ________

7   Leyla ________

8   Zoe ________

9   The sun ________

Show answers

2 Will and Emma were having a picnic.

Kim was reading a magazine.

Max and eve were sunbathing.

5 Ivy and Ben were listening to music.

6 Jay was drinking fruit juice.

Lyra was eating an ice cream.

8 Zoe was phoning somebody.

9 The sun was shining.

5. Write questions with you in the past continuous. The write true answers.

1.30 p.m. yesterday      10.30 p.m. yesterday      on this day last year

3 a.m. this morning      7.30 p.m. yesterday      8.30 a.m. this morning

1   What were you doing at 1.30 p.m. yesterday?

     I was ________.

2   ________.?

     ________.

3   ________.?

     ________.

4   ________.?

     ________.

5   ________.?

     ________.

6   ________.?

     ________.

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your own answers

6. Complete the dialogues with the past continuous form of the verbs in brackets.

1   A1 ___________ (you / talk) on the phone at ten last night? I 2 ___________ (try) to call you.

B No, I 3 ___________ (not talk) on the phone. I 4 ___________ (take) a walk and phone was in the house.

2   A5 ___________ (you / play) on the beach when the storm started?

b No, we 6 ___________ (eat) lunch in the restaurant. It was quite frightening. When we started eating the sun 7 ___________ (shine) and the next minute the wind 8 ___________ (blow) and it 9 ___________ (rain) hard.

3   A10 ___________ (you / sleep) in class this morning?

b No, I 11 ___________ (not sleep)! I 12 ___________ (try) to memorise irregular verbs for the test.

4   A What 13 ___________ (Kate / do) in the head teacher’s office this afternoon? Was she in trouble?

B No, nothing like that. She 14 ___________ (answer) questions about the theatre group’s new play.

Show answers

1 Were you talking; was trying; wasn’t talking; was taking

Were you playing; were eating; was shining; was blowing; was raining

3 Were you sleeping; wasn’t sleeping; was trying

4 was Kate doing; was answering