Adverb Clauses with the Words "Before" and "After"
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The words “before” and “after” can be adverbs used to refer to periods of time. When they are used in a clause (phrase), they follow specific patterns.
They can be used to refer to past and future events
When used to refer to past events, they take the simple past tense.
When used to refer to future events, they take the simple present tense.
The adverb “before” means prior to a particular event or moment The adverb “after” means following a particular event or moment
1. Using “before” and “after with past events: When used with past events, we use the simple past tense after the adverb
Let's look at some examples. "Before" with past events: The adverb “before” and the past tense verb are in bold print in each sentence.
Before I went to work, I got some gas.
I went to my meeting before I talked to my manager.
John drove to the bank before he went to the grocery store.
Before we arrived home, we stopped to see my grandmother.
He didn’t arrive with the money before the bank closed.
"After" with past events: The adverb “after" and the past tense verbs are in bold print in each sentence.
After work I went to a movie.
We went home after the party.
After we finished dinner, the kids washed the dishes.
Jack’s mother stood in the doorway after we left.
After we completed our project, we all went out to celebrate.
2. Using “before or “after” with future events Use the simple present tense after the adverbs when talking about future events.
Let's look at some examples: "Before" with future events: The adverb “before” and the present tense verb are both in bold print in each sentence.
Before you come home, can you pick up some milk for me?
I hope you’re not going to play golf before you drive home from work.
Before you know it, the kids will be off to college.
Before we meet next, you need to send me a recording of your speech.
You always act silly before your girlfriend arrives.
"After" with future events: The adverb “after” and the present tense verb are in bold print in each sentence.
After I get home, I need to take a shower.
I’ll help my son with his homework after I eat dinner.
After we go out for dinner, let’s go and see a movie.
My daughter wants to buy a new outfit after she gets her nails done.
Judy is thinking about going out after she finishes her classes.
It's time to practice! 1. Create 5 sentences with "before" to indicate a past event using the guidelines above. 2. Create 5 sentences with "before" to indicate a future event using the guidelines above. 3. Create 5 sentences with "after" to indicate a future event using the guidelines above. 4. Create 5 sentences with "after" to indicate a past event using the guidelines above.
To check your accuracy, send me your written responses via email, and I will provide you with feedback.