Effective Communication in English. Module 1

29 May 2019 in Personal Development

Module One:

Speaking English Correctly


For most people, communicating effectively is not an easy task because of some speaking problems that hinder effective communication. Here are two of such speaking problems:

1.     Poor use of tenses and

2.     Lack of vocabulary.

This module is going to focus on how to solve these two very important speaking problems. Let’s get started with the first one:


Poor use of tenses:

Have you ever heard someone say “I send it to him this morning?” Or have you said it yourself? This is definitely not the correct way to say it. But sadly, many people make this mistake. Let us have a quick look at tenses, and learn the correct way to say the phrase.

Learning to use the correct tense in any language is an important way of communicating with others. English is a universal language spoken throughout the world. English is used both socially and in business. We all need to be able to use the correct tense whether we are talking about the present, the future and the past.

Here are 8 Examples of How to Use Tenses when Speaking English:


 We use the present simple tense for an action we do generally or often, perhaps even on a daily basis, and is an action we do at the present time.

 For example:

·        I drink a cup of tea most evenings

·        She works from Monday to Friday

·        We eat dinner together every day

·        I listen to music on my mobile phone every night

·        I use my computer every day at work

·        You work from home

·        He works from home

·        She is self-employed

Action: Now repeat each sentence a couple of times to become familiar with the structure.

Now let’s examine the PRESENT CONTINUOUS TENSE

 We use the present continuous tense for an action that we are doing now.

 For example:

·        I am eating breakfast now

·        He is listening to the radio at the moment

·        She is reading a book now

·        They are eating koki now.

·        We like working together

·        You are learning communication at the moment

Action: Describe six actions you perform every day at home or at work, using the present continuous tense. 


 We use the past simple tense for an action that finished in the past and the time was specified.

Now this is extremely important because in my experience, this is where many speakers of English make mistakes.

 For example:

·        I watched television last night

·        He went to England last year

·        She spoke to her friend yesterday

·        We walked in the park on the Monday

·        They played football last Saturday

·        He had an English lesson two days ago

·        She changed her dress this afternoon

·        I sent it to him this morning

·        He registered for the program

 Instead of speaking like the examples above, many say:

·        I watch television last night

·        We walk in the park on the Monday

·        I send it to him this morning

·        She change her dress this afternoon

·        He registered for the program

Exercise: Do you sometimes make these mistakes? If you do, take time to think about all the errors you have made in the past and start correcting them right away.


 We use the past continuous tense for a continuous action that we were doing in the past.

 For example:

·        I was watching television when he arrived

·        They were working hard all day yesterday

·        He was working on the computer when the phone rang

·        We were playing in a tennis match when bad weather stopped play

Exercise: Make 5 sentences using the past continuous with the following: dance, cook, clean, study, moan


 We use the past perfect tense for two actions in the past when one action comes before the other.

 For example:

·        I had eaten my breakfast before I went to work today

·        He had studied English before he went to England

·        We had finished the project before it had to be handed in to be marked



 We use the future simple tense for an action that we will do in the future.

 For example:

·        I will preach peace to the students tomorrow

·        He will work tomorrow

·        She will move to Douala next month

·        They will go on holiday next Sunday

·        You will see your friend this afternoon

·        The sun will shine tomorrow


 We use the future continuous tense for a continuous action we will be doing at a particular time in the future.

 For example:

·        I will be hosting a party tomorrow for my daughter’s graduation

·        We will be flying to Bafut on Saturday

·        We will be visiting our son in a week’s time


 We use the future intention of ‘to be going’ when we intend to do an action usually in the near future.

 For example:

·        I am going to the snack bar tonight

·        She is going to a party on Saturday

·        They are going to get a new car next week

 Now that you have learned about the various tenses, it is important to practice using them in your conversation.

Note that, when speaking English, we use tenses to tell others what is happening now, what will happen and what did happen. It is very important to understand that English speakers need to know whether an event happened in the past, is happening in the present or will happen in the future. 

The word ‘tense’ comes from the Latin word ‘tempus’ that translates into the word time. Once we understand the use of tenses, we can learn to speak and write more fluently and be understood by other English speakers.


About the course:

In this 10-module courses, I have explored very important information regarding effective communication. From the use of tenses, to writing mature documents, to public speaking and more. My aim is definitely not to teach English Language, but to help speakers of English communicate effectively.

Do you want to take the entire course? Please follow the link below to register:


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