Grammar Lessons – Simple Present Tense of The Verb ‘To Be’

Scholarship Examination in India

In this article, we are providing you with the simple Grammar lessons on Simple Present Tense of The Verb ‘To Be’ for Competition Exams. This can be helpful for aspirants of various competitive and bank exams such as IBPS PO, Clerk, SSC and other exams. Readers can also download the PDF from the link given below.


Using the verb ‘to be’ in the simple present tense;

Positive ( Affirmative ) Form (+) :  Subject + TO BE ( am  / is / are ) + …

Negative Form (-) : Subject + TO BE ( am  / is / are) + NOT + …

Question Form (?) : TO BE ( am  / is / are) + Subject + …

Negative Question Form (?) : TO BE ( am  / is / are) + NOT + Subject + …

Short Answer Forms ( + / – ) : YES / NO + Subject + TO BE ( am  / is / are) or TO BE ( am  / is / are) + NOT



Positive Sentences And Contractions With To Be

SubjectTo BePositive (+)Positive Contractions
IamI am readyI’m ready
YouareYou are ready. You’re ready.
HeisHe is ready. He’s ready.
SheisShe is ready. She’s ready.
ItisIt is ready. It’s ready.
WeareWe are ready. We’re ready
YouareYou are ready.You’re ready.
Theyare They are ready.They’re ready.


Note: ”  ‘m, ‘s, ‘re ”  are short (contracted) forms of  ‘’am, is, are’’


  • I am a secretary. /I’m a secretary.
  • She is clever. / She’s
  • We are businessmen. / We’re
  • They are in the park. /They’re in the park.
  • It is on the table. / It’son the table.



Negative Sentences And Contractions With To Be

SubjectTo BeNegative(+)
Iam notI am not ready
Youare notYou are not ready.
Heis notHe is not ready.
Sheis notShe is not ready.
Itis notIt is not ready.
Weare notWe are not ready.
Youare notYou are not ready.
Theyare not They are not ready

Negative Contractions (Subject + To Be)


Negative Contractions ( To Be + Not )

I am ( I’m ) not ready.I am not ( am not ) ready.
You are ( You’re ) not ready.You are not (aren’t ) ready.
He is / He’s not ready.He isn’t ready.
She is / She’s not ready.She isn’t ready.
It is / It’s not ready.It isn’t ready.
We are / We’re not ready.You aren’t ready.
You are / You’re not ready.We aren’t ready.
They are / They’re not ready.They aren’t ready.



  1. To make the positive ( affirmative ) sentences negative, put ‘ not’ after the verbs.



  • I am not intelligent.
  • She is not a doctor.
  • We are not married.
  1. Sentences made by ‘ am/ is /are ‘ as auxiliary verbs have two negative contractions;
  2. The first contraction is made with the subject and the verb.



  • I am ( I’m ) not a pilot.
  • You are ( You’re ) not children.
  • He is ( He’s) not a fireman.


  1. The second contraction is made with the verb and ‘not’.



  • She is not (isn’t) a beautiful woman.
  • We are not ( aren’t ) at home.
  • They are not (aren’t ) from Canada.


  1. As you can see from the chart, we can not make a contraction with the verb ‘am’ and not



  • I am not a teacher.

We can not make a contraction like this ‘am +not = amn’t’ instead of this, we use first contraction made with subject and verb ‘ I + am = I’am) namely,

  • I am not a teacher = I’m not a teacher
  • I am not happy. / I’m not happy.
  • I am not in the garden. / I’m not in the garden.



Positive And Negative Questions  With To Be


Positive Question (?)Negative Question (?)
Am I ready?Am I not ready?
Are you ready?Aren’t you ready?
Is he ready?Isn’t he ready?
Is she ready?Isn’t she ready?
Is it ready?Isn’t it ready?
Are we ready?Aren’t we ready?
Are you ready?Aren’t you ready?
Are they ready?Aren’t they ready?


To make question sentences from positive or negative sentences, put verb or ‘verb + not‘ before the subject. If you want to make negative questions, you can use the contractions.



  • Am I crazy?
  • Is she a doctor?
  • Are you from Spain?
  • Are they marry?
  • Isn’t it on the desk?
  • Aren’t you friends?


The exception to the rule:

If you want to build a negative question using the verb ‘ am ‘, put the verb first, and then subject and ‘not’.


Am + Subject Pronouns + Not + …


  • Am I not sick?
  • Am I not tired?
  • Am I not ready?



Positive And Negative Short Answers With To Be

Positive Short AnswerNegative Short Answer
Yes, I amNo, I’m not
Yes, you areNo, you aren’t
Yes, he isNo, he isn’t
Yes, she isNo, she isn’t
Yes, it isNo, it isn’t
Yes, we areNo, we aren’t
Yes, you areNo, you aren’t
Yes, they areNo, they aren’t



  • Are you sure? – Yes, I am or No, I am not
  • Is he late? – yes, he is late or No, he is not late
  • Aren’t they good at math? Yes, they are or No, they aren’t
  • Aren’t you sick? Yes, I am— No, I am not
  • Is it a cat?  yes, it is — no it isn’t
  • Is she ill? Yes she il or No she isn’t



  1. We don’t use contractions in positive short answers 



  • Yes, I am (  we do not use I’m)
  • Yes, you are ( we do not use you’re)
  • Yes, he is ( we do not use he’s)


  1. Do not forget to pay attention to the use of some subject pronouns ( such as I, You ) while answering questions.



  • Am I sick?
  • Yes, you are / No you aren’t
  • Are you at home?
  • Yes, I am / No,  I am not


  1. We can also use a question word (Who, What, Why etc.) with to be in present tense.


Question Words (who, what, why, etc.) + TO BE ( am/is/are ) + subject + …


  • Why are you late every day?
  • Who is she?
  • Where are they from?


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