Do did past simple explained in English Beginners Course Lesson 27

Lesson 27


This tutorial is focusing on the auxiliary “did”  past simple, and how to use it in negative and question forms.


1/Sentence Practice

Peter answers the door. Sara and her friend Jeanne are on the doorstep. How are you Sara and how are you, Jeanne?

Sara is an English language teacher and Jeanne teaches French. They teach in the same school.

Did you bring the dessert? I did, here it is. Put it in the fridge. We will go to have a drink before eating.

They leave their things in the hall. They take the bottle of fizzy water and go to the kitchen.

What did you do this week Sara? I did the usual things. You did your work then? Did it take a long time?

It did, Jeanne did you enjoy your week? Yes, I did. I love London and Sara helps me such a lot with my English.

What did she teach you? We did the auxiliary verb do. That’s funny, did you learn a lot? Is it easy.

“What do you do?” is in the present and “What did you do?” is in the past.

I did, you did, he, she, it did, we did, you did, they did. It doesn’t vary. It didn’t take long to learn, did it Sara?

No, it didn’t. You did very well, didn’t you? Yes, I did, thank you so much.


2/Vocabulary Practice

  • I did
  • , did you?
  • to answer the door
  • Sara
  • a friend
  • the doorstep
  • an English language teacher
  • to teach French
  •  the same school
  • Did you bring the dessert?
  • I did, here it is.
  • the fridge
  • to have a drink
  • to leave
  • the bottle of fizzy water
  • What did you do this week Sara?
  • I did the usual things.
  • You did your work then?
  • Did it take a long time?
  • to enjoy
  • to love London
  • to help
  • such a lot
  • an auxiliary verb
  • the present
  • the past


The simple past or past simple in the negative and question forms.

Let’s learn how to form the simple past negative and question forms!

We use the auxiliary “to do” in the past simple: “did” to create the negative and question forms of regular verbs:

I did, you did, he did, she did, it did, we did, you did, they did

I did not, you did not, he did not, she did not, it did not, we did not, you did not, they did not

I didn’t, you didn’t, he didn’t, she didn’t, it didn’t, we didn’t, you didn’t, they didn’t

I did not laugh. I didn’t laugh.

Did you laugh? Didn’t you laugh? Did you not laugh?

Simple past forms:

S + did not / didn’t + bare infinitive (infinitive without “to”) + O.

She did not know that. / She didn’t know that.

Be careful: do not say “I did not learnED” (WRONG!!) > “I did not learn” is the correct form

More examples:

She did not learn any English.

They didn’t eat their food.

He didn’t know how to pronounce the word

Didn’t + S + bare infinitive + O ?

Did + S + not + bare infinitive + O ?

Didn’t they arrive on time?

Did they not arrive on time?

Be careful: do not say “Did they not arrivED?” (WRONG!!) > “Did they not arrivE?” is the correct form

More examples:

Did he learn any Spanish?

Didn’t they eat their food?

Did he not phone you?

This tense is used for:

1/ completed actions – when it is over:

He lived there when he was 10.

He completed the course last week.

2/ when I focus on the duration of an action:

He learned English for 2 years.

He was there for most of his life.

3/ when an action has happened once, never or several times in the past:

He went to school every day.

He never met his grandfather.

4/ for a series of actions in the past:

I opened the book, I read, I learned something new.

5/ for facts or generalisations in the past:

They used to live in tents.

They were very famous at the time.

Signal words / adverbs of time that go with this tense:

1/ LAST…

Last week

last Friday

last time

2/ IN…

in September

in 1995

in the summer

3/ WHEN…

when she was a child

when I was 21

when that happened



the other day

Questions and Answers

Questions and Answers

Did you do the shopping?

 Yes, I did do the shopping. 

Did you remember the milk?

 No, I forgot the milk.

 Did they bring the desert? 

No, they did not bring desert.

When did you come to England?

 I came to England when I was 21.

 What did you do yesterday?

 I can’t remember what I did yesterday. 

What did they do last Friday?

 They did the washing last Friday.

 What did we do in September?

 We did our exams in September.

Did he learn Spanish?

 No, he didn’t but he did learn French.

Why didn’t they arrive on time?

 They didn’t arrive on time because the train was late.

 Why didn’t they eat their food?

 They didn’t eat their food because they were not hungry.

Exercises Lesson 27

Comprehension Practice

Vocabulary Practice

Grammar Practice