AEM Academy

Past Continuous

Purpose: Interrupted action – the ongoing action takes past continuous and the interruption takes past simple.

You’ll often see “while” + past continuous.

Active voice:                  

  • The shippers damaged the product while they were unloading it.
  • I didn’t pick up the phone because I was eating dinner.

Passive voice:                

  • The product was damaged while it was being unloaded.

Important pronunciation note about "being" vs "been":

“Being” as in “while it was being shipping” is pronounced “bee – ing.” This word has a long pronunciation.

“Been” as in “the product has been shipped” is pronounced “bin.” This word has a short pronunciation.

Don't use past continuous for no reason

INCORRECT:                What were you doing last weekend?
What did you do last weekend?

Last weekend, I was just watching TV.
Last weekend, I just watched TV.