Hi teachers,

With this sentence, I'm just informing about Robert's action and the number of times he did it, aren't I?

Robert has had his breakfast in the kitchen a lot of times.

Does the sentence suggest anything else?

Is it necessary to write at the end 'so far' or it is just optional?

Thanks in advance
1 2 3
Thinking SpainI'm just informing about Robert's action and the number of times he did it, aren't I?
Robert has had his breakfast in the kitchen a lot of times.
Yes, though the number of times is left vague. A slightly more elegant way of saying this is Robert has often had his breakfast in the kitchen.

Thinking SpainDoes the sentence suggest anything else?
Not that I know. I'm not sure what other sorts of things you have in mind that it might suggest.

Thinking SpainIs it necessary to write at the end 'so far' or it is just optional?
Absolutely unnecessary. Optional. In fact, the inclusion of so far would spoil the sentence, I think.

CJ
Hi CalifJim,

Thank you for your reply.

The thing is that the students have to fill in the blanks with present perfect forms.

They have the drawings and the base form of the verbs written below them.

The idea of the exercise is to practice the present perfect with the number of times the actions have occurred at indefinite times in the past.

What is underline and in bold are the answers.

1.- Robert has gotten up early three times.

2.- Robert has shaved in the bathroom a lot of times.

3.- Robert has taken a shower after it many times.

4.- Robert has gotten dressed in his bedrrom several times.

5.- Robert has had his breakfast in the kitchen once.

6.- Robert has gone out of the house late twice.

Do they all make sense? Should I add a present time marker at the end, like 'this week', this month' etc.?
CalifJimYes, though the number of times is left vague.
What should be a better way then? Can you help me?

TS
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
Thinking SpainDo they all make sense?
Yes. I would, however, leave out "after it" in 3.

Thinking SpainShould I add a present time marker at the end, like 'this week', this month' etc.?
That addition is optional. For variety you may want to add such expressions to a few, but not all, of your sentences.

Thinking Spain
CalifJimYes, though the number of times is left vague.
What should be a better way then? Can you help me?
There is no "better way". I think you misunderstood the import of my comment. It was simply that "a lot of times" is not, strictly speaking, "a number" of times, the numbers being 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, .... Maybe I was just making a little joke - a very little joke. Sorry if I distracted you from the main point.

Of course you can indicate an indefinite number of times instead of a definite number of times. There is no objection to that.

CJ
Hi CalifJim,

Thank you for you reply.
CalifJimI would, however, leave out "after it" in 3.
I wrote 'after it' just to make a connection with sentence number 2.

But if there is no need for the purpose of the exercise, there is no need.

So, It should be just, 'Robert has taken a shower many times'.

What about saying 'immediately after' at the end?
CalifJimIt was simply that "a lot of times" is not, strictly speaking, "a number" of times, the numbers being 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, ....
Uphs! I know it. Sorry I forgot to mention that in the exercise they have already learnt to use the present perfect with 'adverbs of number' (exact number of times) and 'adverbs of quantity' (indefinite number of times).

Another one please.

Since you already know what the exercise is about, let me ask you if the sentences given are fine.

The students have this information.

Remember: The present perfect can also express the frequency with which the actions or situations have occurred at indefinite times in the past.

This is only possible with a frequency expression at the end of the sentence or a frequency adverb in it.

1.- Robert has gotten up early every day.

2.- Robert has shaved with his new electric razor every morning.

3.- Robert has always taken a shower immediately after.

4.- Robert has often gotten dressed in his bedroom.

5.- Robert has frequently had his breakfast in the kitchen.

6.- Robert has gone out of the house early every week.

There is no need to write at the end 'so far', is there?

Why I am asking it, because one person here told me to do so.

Thank you very much for reading me. There are another six to go, do you mind if I ask you about them?Emotion: embarrassed

TS
Thinking SpainIt should be just, 'Robert has taken a shower many times'.
What about saying 'immediately after' at the end?
That addition would be all right.

Thinking Spain1.- Robert has gotten up early every day.
...
6.- Robert has gone out of the house early every week.
There is no need to write at the end 'so far', is there?
No. Absolutely not.

Thinking SpainThere are another six to go, do you mind if I ask you about them?
No, I don't mind, but, as always, I will be answering other questions on the forum, so I might not be able to get to your question right away. Emotion: smile

CJ
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Hi CalifJim,

Than YOU so much. I assume that my last six sentences are fine, just because you didn't make any corrections.

Am I right?Emotion: it wasnt me

How come people here have told me that I need 'so far' at the end in order to make sense?

I just can't understand it.

The students have this information. Remember: The present perfect with the preposition 'since' + a specific time and the preposition 'for' + a period of time, expresses actions or situations than commenced in the past and continue in the present.

1.- a) Robert has gotten up early for a week.

b) Robert has gotten up early since last week.

2.- a) Robert has shaved with his new electric razor since last month.

b) Robert has shaved with his new electric razor for a few weeks.

3.- a) Robert has taken a long shower for ten days.

b) Robert has taken a long shower since last week.

There are 3 more, but it's the same idea.

Someone here told me that I can't use these verbs in the present perfect. That for the present perfect, I can oly use 'non-action verbs'. Is that true? Because I have some books and they say that we can use 'actions verbs' with the present perfect as well as the present perfect progressive, and many other tenses of course.

I am saying it, because this person told me that 'actions verbs' are not used with the present perfect. To express indefinite time only with the present perfect progressive.Emotion: hmm

BY the way, Would the explanations below be fine for the following sentences? Could they be better or shorter?

'Sharon has studied Spanish since 2008'.

Because of the tense and the preposition 'since' the sentence focuses on when Sharon commenced to study Spanish until now.

'Sharon has studied Spanish for a few years'.

Because of the tense and the preposition 'for' the sentence focuses on the duration of Sharon's studies in Spanish until now.

Thank you once again for your patience and your help.Emotion: nodding

So sorry it is too long.Emotion: embarrassed

TS
Thinking SpainI assume that my last six sentences are fine, just because you didn't make any corrections.
As a general rule, you can assume that. If I see anything really crazy, I'll mention it!

Thinking Spainthat I need 'so far'
Everyone has their own way of looking at things, and you simply have to evaluate for yourself which advice you feel is best when many different opinions are offered.

Thinking SpainSomeone here told me that I can't use these verbs in the present perfect.
That's more or less true, but I think it may be a little more complicated than that. Let's start with the ones with for. Predicates that contain action verbs usually sound better with the present perfect continuous (also called 'progressive'). The idea is that some action is repeated over a period of time. Without the continuous form, you may accidentally give the impression that there was only one occasion when the action happened, and then the adverbial of time will apply to that single action. This example shows it best:

1) Robert has taken a long shower for ten days.

Well! the native speaker may say, I can imagine that that was indeed a long shower. It took ten days for Robert to take that shower! Native speakers tend to indicate the repetition of the action thus, with the progressive and a plural object:

2) Robert has been taking long showers for ten days.

____________________

Now, if we might digress for a moment, note that for 1), common sense blocks the ten-day shower meaning, so you will be understood if you say 1). Even so, native speakers prefer 2) as it avoids any unintentional humor or oddities.

The same is true for the others, as shown below:

Possible, and understandable, but not preferred:

Robert has gotten up early for a week.
Robert has shaved with his new electric razor for a few weeks.

Preferred:

Robert has been getting up early for a week.
Robert has been shaving with his new electric razor for a few weeks.

___________________________________

The pattern is reversed for stative verbs.

Robert had had his pet dog for three years. Good.

*Robert has been having his pet dog for three years. No!

______________________________________

As for the sentences with since, I confess that they do not sound completely natural to me. They are grammatical and understandable, but, even with the progressive, they are unusual with a time period instead of a time point. I'll include an alternate version that follows the pattern better.

Robert has been getting up early since last week. [since last Tuesday]
Robert has been shaving with his new electric razor since last month. [since the beginning of March]
Robert has been taking long showers since last week. [since the end of winter].

I think it is somewhat debatable whether "last week", for example, is a time period or a time point.

____________

Of course you can always have a since-clause that describes an event. This is very common.

Robert has been getting up early since he has started his new job.
Robert has been shaving with his new electric razor since the price of razor blades has increased.
Robert has been taking long showers since he has started his new diet.

__________________________

Thinking SpainWould the explanations below be fine for the following sentences? Could they be better or shorter?
'Sharon has studied Spanish since 2008'.
Because of the tense and the preposition 'since' the sentence focuses on when Sharon commenced to study Spanish until now.
'Sharon has studied Spanish for a few years'.
Because of the tense and the preposition 'for' the sentence focuses on the duration of Sharon's studies in Spanish until now.
"commenced" may be an ordinary word in your language, but it's pretty "high class" in English. (That means you have to wear a tuxedo and a top hat to use "commenced". Emotion: smile) I would change that to "began" or "started".

Again, the much preferred form is has been studying, as explained above, especially if you want to be sure the time period of the studying extends to the present moment in the case of "for a few years".

X = now; the present moment

...........................[has been studying]X.......................... < one possible interpretation

since 2008

for a few years

....................................[has studied]X........................... <one possible interpretation>

since 2008

...[has studied].................................X........................... <many

for a few years

......................[has studied]..............X........................... possible

for a few years

....................................[has studied]X........................... interpretations>

for a few years

Otherwise, fine.

CJ
Hi CalifJim,

This is the best explanation I've everseen. I promise you. The way you've explained it is so clear and the examples just perfect. Though the ball is now in my court. Emotion: smile [Y] Emotion: clap

Of course I've printed everything and highlighted the most important parts for me. Well, almost everything to be honest.

Now I have to digest everything and write it down.

Do you mind if I go on with my questions about the present perfect continuous with 'since' and 'for'?

You've opened new doors to the present perfect, as well as the present perfect progressive.

I'm really excited about it.

"commenced" may be an ordinary word in your language, but it's pretty "high class" in English. (That means you have to wear a tuxedo and a top hat to use "commenced". I would change that to "began" or "started".

Thank you again. I didn't know about that.

Well I use 'commenced' because in Spanish is 'comenzar', so it is pretty closed in meaning. What I will do after your commentary is this, 'began (commenced)', then they will understand it.

TS
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