Present Tense - Use


You use the Present Tense for:

1. actions which are happening at the moment
    Example:   Er hört Radio.
    Phonetic Script:   [e:ɐ hø:rt 'ra:dio]
    English:   He listens to the radio.
    Literally:   He hears radio.
2. actions which have begun in the past and still continue
    Example:   Ben lernt seit einem Monat Deutsch.
    Phonetic Script:   [bɛn lɛrnt zait 'ainəm 'mo:nat dɔytʃ]
    English:   Ben learns German for a month.
    Literally:   Ben learns for a month German.
3. repeated actions (every day, often sometimes, never)
    Example:   Robert geht oft ins Kino.
    Phonetic Script:   ['ro:bɛrt ge:t ɔft ɪns 'ki:no]
    English:   Robert often goes to the cinema.
    Literally:   Robert goes often in(to) the cinema.
4. actions happening at the same time or one after the other
    Example:   Während Lisa Klavier spielt, malt Petra. Danach gehen sie in die Stadt.
    Phonetic Script:   ['wɛ:rənt 'li:za kla'vi:ə ʃpi:lt, ma:lt 'pe:tra] [da'na:x 'ge:ən zi: ɪn di: ʃtat]
    English:   While Lisa is playing the piano, Petra is painting. Afterwards, they are going to town.
    Literally:   While Lisa plays piano, paints Petra. Afterwards, go they in the town.
5. things in general and facts which are guilty forever
    Example:   Berlin ist Deutschlands Hauptstadt.
    Phonetic Script:   [bɛr'li:n ɪst 'dɔytʃlants 'hauptʃtat]
    English:   Berlin is Germany's capital.
6. fixed arrangements and scheduled events in the future
    Example:   Morgen fahren wir nach Köln.
    Phonetic Script:   ['mɔrgən 'fa:rən vi:ə na:x kœln]
    English:   Tomorrow we go to Cologne.
    Literally:   Tomorrow go/drive we to Cologne.