Verb Tense Exercise (359)

Edit the following sentences to correct any misuse of verb tense as it relates to the thoughts expressed by the sentences.

Answers and Explanations

1.
Original: Being assigned to teach children as troubled as these were would have daunted a less experienced teacher on our staff.
Correct : Being assigned to teach children as troubled as these are would have daunted a less experienced teacher on our staff.

The sentence is framed in the past tense, but the children are troubled in the present.

2.
Original: The seven years I spent living and working in England was one of my best memories.
Correct : The seven years I spent living and working in England is one of my best memories.

The experience described took place in the past, but the memory exists in the present. (A unit of time like "seven years" is treated as singular.)

3.
Original: She said she didn’t know that "ensure" was an American spelling.
Correct : She said she didn’t know that "ensure" is an American spelling.

Because the spelling "ensure" is in fact used as an American spelling, the verb after "ensure" should be in present tense.

4.
Original: My eight-year-old granddaughter showed me how Pinterest worked.
Correct : My eight-year-old granddaughter showed me how Pinterest works.

The social medium Pinterest is still in use, so the verb should be "works."

5.
Original: The principal wanted to know how the teacher’s unit on King Arthur met the Common Core directives.
Correct : The principal wanted to know how the teacher’s unit on King Arthur meets the Common Core directives.

As the Common Core standards are presumably in place, the verb should be "meets."

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