Speak About:

Present

Past

Past to Present

Future

Abilities - Responsibilities

Asking Questions

Choosing the Right Phrase

Combining Verbs

Explaining Ideas

Describing Your World

Complex Ideas

Relating Ideas, People, Objects

Speaking about Objects

Wondering about Situations

What was happening ...?

Past Continuous

Use the past continuous to express what was occurring at a precise moment in the past. The past continuous is often used together with the simple past to express an interrupted action. The action which was interrupted is expressed using the past continuous, while the action which caused the interruption takes the past simple.

Positive Form:

Subject + to be + verb + ing + objects

We were discussing a partnership when the corporate office came in with a hostile takeover.

Negative Form:

Subject + to be + not + verb + ing + objects

I wasn't expecting the closing date to be so soon when the broker called to tell me.

Question Form:

Wh? + to be + subject + verb + ing?

What were you doing when the raw materials arrived?

NOTE: The past continuous is often used together with the simple past to express an interrupted action. The action which was interrupted is expressed using the past continuous, while the action which caused the interruption takes the past simple.

I was calculating last year's gross profit when you called.

We were discussing a partnership when the corporate office came in with a hostile takeover.

The endorser wasn't doing anything when you called.

They weren't considering all of the factors when they noticed it was affecting the gross profit.