1,057 FREE Past Simple Worksheets

FREE Past Simple Worksheets

Verb tenses are some of the most important aspects of a new grammar’s language - and also one of the trickiest to get right in the beginning. As an ESL teacher, you know how challenging it can be to design tense exercises that keep students engaged, while also making sure they’re well-drilled on the fundamentals of a certain tense. Balancing the need to teach proper use of the past simple tense with the need for fun and challenging activities in the classroom can often seem like a chore.

Different teachers take different approaches to this challenger. Some simply drill their students on tense until the students can successfully produce every form of a given verb - as was the practice for decades - while others take a more modern approach, and try to mix it up in the classroom with a hodgepodge of games, reading, speaking, and other exercises. Your approach may involve any or all of these elements - which is why it’s important to have a diverse grab-bag of resources at your disposal.

BusyTeacher.org has got you covered. Our 1,057 past simple tense worksheets are guaranteed to keep your students talking, creating sentences, and working together to help each other learn the rules of how an English verb is used in the past simple tense. These worksheets provide a variety of interesting and relevant topics, which means your students can take what they’ve learned out of the classroom, and start applying it to their real-world English speaking and writing, right away.

Some of our past simple tense worksheets are just simple verb lists and grammar exercises - all complete with pronunciation guides and usage examples, of course. Others use popular songs whose lyrics fall mostly into the past simple tense - freeing you from the hassle of tracking down a song that’s useful for teaching this tense. Other worksheets help you bring writing or speaking exercises into the classroom, and encourage students to use the past simple tense to talk about their own lives. And still others lay out the rules for board games, so your students can play and learn at the same time.

One handy feature of BusyTeacher.org is the ability to view any of our 1,057 past simple worksheets as a thumbnail, without having to click and wait for the worksheet to load. This is a handy time-saver, as it can give you a general idea of what each worksheet looks like without requiring you to even leave this page. Plus, every worksheet on this site is completely free to download and use in your lessons - you don’t even have to register or provide any information to us in return.

How can you be sure these worksheets will work for you? Because they all come directly from the classrooms of ESL teachers around the world, who’ve found them to be especially effective for teaching the past simple tense. Got a worksheet of your own that you’d like to share? Just click the “Submit a worksheet” button at the bottom of this page, and you can join our worldwide community of contributing teachers.

So scroll down, check out our worksheets, and find out what benefits BusyTeacher.org has to offer your classroom!

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GRAMMAR TIP:What Is Past Tense?
A past tense (abbreviated pst) is a grammatical tense that places an action or situation in the past of the current moment (in an absolute tense system), or prior to some other event, whether that is past, present, or future (in a relative tense system). Not all languages mark verbs for the past tense (Mandarin Chinese, for example, does not); in some languages, the grammatical expression of tense is mixed with the expression of mood and/or aspect (see Tense-aspect-mood). In English, there are two verb forms which are commonly called "past tense", the so-called simple past, sometimes misleadingly called the preterite, which is a true tense, and the present perfect, which is generally considered an aspect rather than a tense. These combine with other aspects including the continuous and progressive aspects to create several additional forms: Simple past is formed for regular verbs by adding -d or – ed to the root of a word. Examples: He walked to the store, or They danced all night.
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Source: Past Tense on Freebase, licensed under CC-BY
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Future In The Past: What People In The Past Thought

Future In The Past: What People In The Past Thought

CrisBS
  This PowerPoint shows pictures made by people in the early 1950s and 1940s portraying how they thought the future might be. It's good to practice "They thought that we would be able to f ...
1 Views 2,115 IntAdvExam
Bad Habits

Bad Habits

Jeff Genet
  This fun and engaging intermediate video-based lesson on Bad Habits features visual aids for brainstorming vocabulary and phrases and talking about bad habits. It includes activities suc ...
1 Views 5,126 All
Good Ones - Charli XCX Song Worksheet

Good Ones - Charli XCX Song Worksheet

Manuelle Reichert
  This song worksheet features "Good Ones" by Charli XCX. Students choose the correct tense of the words that are in bold, then complete the sentences with the missing words found in the w ...
1 Views 2,968 All
Song worksheet: Rain on me by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande

Song worksheet: Rain on me by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande

» » Past Simple
  This listening activity based on the popular song "Rain on Me" by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande can be used as a warmup for a lesson with students that have already studied the Simple Past ...
1 Views 4,286 Pre-Int
Present Simple animated YouTube video - Accompanying Background

Present Simple animated YouTube video - Accompanying Background

Grammatics
  This background is designed to be used in conjunction with an animated YouTube video. Young learners can watch and 'do' their first lesson, then have fun colouring and finally creating t ...
1 Views 3,846 BegElem
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That's All Folks...

That's All Folks...

  This worksheet is a revision lesson for Pre-Intermediate level 12-14-year-olds of personality adjectives, past simple vs past continuous and used to, in the context of popular cartoons. ...
2 Views 4,369 Pre-Int
Past Simple Tense: How Kamala Harris Went From Prosecutor to Vice Presidential Candidate

Past Simple Tense: How Kamala Harris Went From Prosecutor to Vice Presidential Candidate

Anastasiia
Past Simple, , ,
  This grammar practice and listening worksheet focuses on the use of the Past Simple tense. The video helps students to check their answers. They observe the use of the tense and practise ...
1 Views 28,240 Pre-IntInt
Song: Memories by Maroon 5 – Level A2

Song: Memories by Maroon 5 – Level A2

ARACELI REYES
  This song by Maroon 5 helps to practice verbs in the past tense and listening comprehension. It is suitable for A2-level students. After listening to the song and completing the activiti ...
1 Views 11,288 Pre-Int
Grammar Review B2 and C1 Levels

Grammar Review B2 and C1 Levels

Manuela Moraes
This PowerPoint presentation helps students review the time tenses. It includes some warm-up examples (teachers should prepare their own explanations), and three grammar exercises (with answers) ...
1 Views 9,769 AdvExam
Harry Potter Past Simple Fill in the Blanks

Harry Potter Past Simple Fill in the Blanks

Froukje Berkouwer
Past Simple,
This simple fill-in-the-blank exercise is perfect for students to practice the Past Simple tense. It is an extract from Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling. Students fill in ...
1 Views 9,037 Pre-IntInt
Song Worksheet: Sam Smith, Fire on Fire

Song Worksheet: Sam Smith, Fire on Fire

Tatiana Rivadeneira
Past Simple, ,
  This short worksheet is for elementary and pre-intermediate students to help them recognize the present and past simple tenses. It includes words that might sound alike or can be confusi ...
1 Views 6,071 ElemPre-Int
True Friends

True Friends

Oleg Mazurenko
» » Past Simple
  In this worksheet, students go through the vocabulary preparation, watch a video about two octopus friends, recall Past Simple verbs, then complete the summary of the story. If your stud ...
1 Views 7,257 ElemPre-Int
Hoarding

Hoarding

Lorena Andrea
  This upper-intermediate worksheet covers the subject of hoarding. Students go through and discuss the questions carefully. Then they watch the video on YouTube through the provided link. ...
1 Views 7,239 Adv
Thunder By Imagine Dragons Fill In The Blank Worksheet

Thunder By Imagine Dragons Fill In The Blank Worksheet

Tammy Cohen Dadon
  This listening comprehension activity is a fill-in-the-blank assignment. Students listen to and watch the video then answer the questions using the words from the word bank. It includes ...
1 Views 16,047 IntAdvExam
A Past Simple Gap Fill And Listening Lesson Plan

A Past Simple Gap Fill And Listening Lesson Plan

, Past Simple,
  This resource covers Past Simple, Passive Voice, Regular/Irregular Verbs, Gender equality, and Questions in the Past Simple tenses. It's a listening activity that helps practice the Past ...
1 Views 6,710 Pre-IntIntAdv
Where Are You Now? by Honor Society Song Worksheet

Where Are You Now? by Honor Society Song Worksheet

BusyTeacher Contributor
Past Simple,
  This worksheet contains a simple song about friendship and is used to enhance listening skills and develop the vocabulary, including verbs and making it easy to identify certain verb tenses.
1 Views 3,572 Elem
Celebrities from the past: Using Verbs

Celebrities from the past: Using Verbs

Past Simple,
  This worksheet contains 6 cards with celebrities from the past. Students can research and fill in the personal information of each celebrity include complete sentences using the pas ...
1 Views 5,559 Elem
Past Tense

Past Tense "To Be" Thomas Edison

Florencia Lerda
» » Past Simple
  This very short worksheet contains sentences about Thomas Edison. Fill in the blanks with the correct past tense forms of "to be," was or were. Students do not need knowledge of Thomas E ...
1 Views 4,522 Elem
Passive Voice – Present Simple & Past Simple Worksheet

Passive Voice – Present Simple & Past Simple Worksheet

, Past Simple,
  This short worksheet includes information on the rules for using the Passive Voice. There are two exercises to practise the Present Simple & the Past Simple Passive forms. One activi ...
1 Views 8,211 Pre-IntInt
Past Simple or Past Continuous 1

Past Simple or Past Continuous 1

, Past Simple
  This worksheet teaches the difference between the past simple and the past continuous. It contains three exercises: Rewrite the verb, Put the verbs in brackets in the Past Simple or Past ...
1 Views 13,014 Pre-IntInt
Simple past questions & answers with pictures

Simple past questions & answers with pictures

Fatima Perez
  This activity helps students practice asking and answering questions based on pictures about past actions. They will also have to correct information by making negative and affirmative s ...
1 Views 9,358 Elem
Test: Past Simple

Test: Past Simple

Practise English team
  Based on file 7 of the English File Elementary Fourth Edition, this test covers grammar (Past Simple (to be, regular and irregular verbs), vocabulary (word formation and expressions with ...
1 Views 12,444 Elem
CLIL Music – CLEMENTINE

CLIL Music – CLEMENTINE

BusyTeacher Contributor
» » Past Simple
While listening to the lyrics of the traditional song about Clementine, students can practice reading comprehension, learn new vocabulary, including related synonyms, and sing a song while t ...
1 Views 2,193 BegElem
About Myself Mind Map

About Myself Mind Map

Igor Klimko
  This mind map provides a speaking activity and can be used as a guideline for new students to introduce themselves. It can also be used for questions and an ...
1 Views 7,475 Pre-IntInt
Mnemonic Rhyming Groups

Mnemonic Rhyming Groups

  Learning can be fun with mnemonics. In this resource irregular verbs are sorted into rhyming groups that make it easier to memorize them in a short period of time. Actually some groups ...
1 Views 4,161 All

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