How to Express Past, Present or Future Events in Mandarin Chinese
As we all know, Chinese doesn't have different verb conjugations to indicate periods of time, so how does someone know that you are referring to something happening at different times? In this episode, I'll teach you the Chinese time expressions that indicate when an action takes place. Let's check it out.
VIDEO Part 1: Present events (showing that an action happens at present)
I'm a teacher, I'm not a student.
Sometimes he is sober and sometimes confused.
Father usually cooks in my home.
She is always late for school.
I get up at six every day.
Mother goes to church every week.
I visit my grandfather every month.
Children grow taller each year.
He blushes as soon as he drinks.
Part 2: Present continuous events (showing that an action is in progress)
I am sleeping.
I am watching TV at the moment.
I have been watching TV all the time.
Part 3: Past events (showing that an action is completed) Note
Aspect particle了 has a lot of different usages. “Verb +了” is only one of its common usages, it indicates that an action is complete in a certain time frame.
The structure is:
Subject + Verb + 过 + Object
I have been to Beijing (before).
The structure for this is:
Subject + 没 + Verb + 过 + Object
I haven't been to Beijing.
He arrived yesterday.
I went to Beijing by train.
He came to China ten years ago.
He was watching TV three minutes ago.
He went to library just now.
We were young at that time.
He wasn't present yesterday.
He went to Shanghai the day before yesterday.
I went on a business trip last month.
He graduated from university last year.
He was studying the year before last.
Part 4: Future events (showing that an action will happen in the future)
会 / 会...的 [huì huì...de ]
I will take part in that meeting.
I will call you.
I want to go to the park.
We'll invite experts to attend this meeting.
He is going to leave here.
I will take an exam tomorrow.
He wants to be a doctor in the future.
I plan to go hiking tomorrow.
He wants to study abroad.
He is about to leave here.
I will send the email to you immediately.
You will know it at that time.
I want to play badminton tomorrow.
I'll have a competition the day after tomorrow.
I will celebrate my birthday next week.
He is going to get married next month.
He is planning to go abroad next year.