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11.5 Final -s: Using Final -s for Present Tense Verbs

With singular subjects other than you or I, verbs in the simple present tense add -s.
Some liquids boil at low temperatures, but water boils at 212 degrees Farenheit.
Except for to be, all English verbs use their base forms to express the simple present tense. (See Chapter 2.) But when the subject of the verb is singular (only one), and is neither you nor I, the verb takes an added -s. Here's how it works with the verb to think:
Singular Plural
I thinkwe think
you thinkyou think
she thinks, he thinks, it thinksthey think
(any other singular subject) thinks(any other plural subject) think
Application 7      Application 8
The present tense -s is built into the words is, has, and does.

Here are the present tense forms of to do,to have, and to be, combined with different subjects to show agreement.

  Singular Plural
to do I do
you do
he does, she does, it does,
(any other singular subject) does
we do
you do
they do
(any other plural subject) do
to have I have
you have
he has, she has, it has,
(any other singular subject) has
we have
you have
they have
(any other plural subject) have
to be I am
you are
he is, she is, it is,
(any other singular subject) is
we are
you are
they are
(any other plural subject) are
Note: You can see from the chart that the words is, has, and does are used only with singular subjects other than I or you.

Application 9      Application 10      Application 11
When present tense forms of to be, to have, or to do act as auxiliaries in verb strings, they follow the same pattern.
I am drying my hair. ___ The sun is drying my hair.
The breezes have dried my hair. ___ The breeze has dried my hair.
You don't dry my hair. ___ Your towel doesn't dry my hair.
Remember that only singular subjects other than I or you take the present tense -s.

The present progressive tense combines the present participle form of a main verb with a present tense form of to be.

The Asian Student Union is planning a marathon open only to bilingual or multilingual students who are living in this state.
Application 12      Application 13
The present perfect tense combines the past participle of a main verb with a present tense form of to have.
Finally the printer has completed the poster and the sponsors have signed for the bill.

Application 14      Application 15
When statements containing present tense single-word verbs are turned into questions or negative statements, the verb becomes a verb string combining the base form of a main verb and a simple present tense form of to do.
What does Ralph think of the abstract design at the top? Some of the students don't understand its purpose.

Application 16
An added -s on a noun means plural. An added -s on a verb means singular. Added -s therefore has two entirely different purposes. Learn to tell them apart.

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