Present perfect activities

The present perfect is possibly one of the most difficult tenses for students to grasp.  They do endless gap filling exercises, but the most important rule, not mentioning a time factor except with for/since is never adhered to in conversation.  Here are some fun games for students to practise with.

POOR ME!                                    

This activity is a great energy booster while students practise the present perfect negative.

  1. Arrange chairs facing into a circle for all students but one.

  2. This student stands in the middle and says something he/she has never done before.  E.g.Poor me.   I have never been to Mexico.

  3. Those in the circle who have done the activity leave their seats and find another one.

  4. The student in the middle tries to find an empty seat. The student left standing takes the turn and so the game continues.


This game is very good for observation skills and for using the present perfect interrogative.

  1. Divide students into groups or teams.

  2. Get one person from each team to leave the room.

  3. Get the students on the teams to change things around in the room.

  4. Call the students back in.

  5. The students then look and ask – have you moved …… ?

  6. The student who guesses correctly gets a point for his/her team