I wrote a letter and my teacher gave me feedback on it. I wrote this sentence:

Since I bought Playstation when I was 12 years old, I played it almost everyday.

My teacher wrote that the verb tense was wrong in the word "played".

How can I fix it?


  • Use have played (habitual sense). For an explanation of why or any other follow-up questions, please ask on our sister site, English Language Learners. – Dan Bron Mar 15 '16 at 17:51

The problem with the tense is that it does not match the sense of time indicated by the word since. Since means "from a starting point until now." Therefore, the time in your sentence spans from when you were 12 years old until today. The present perfect also indicates a span of time from the past until today, which is why it often is paired with since.

Notice the difference in time between these two sentences:

Since I was 12, I have played basketball almost every day. (The span of time is from the past until now, so we use the tense that also spans the past until now.)

From the time I was 12 until I graduated high school, I played basketball almost every day. (The span of time is from one point in the past until another point in the past, so we use the tense that is entirely in the past.)

Just be aware that since does not always indicate time. It can also mean because. When it means because, it does not necessarily pair with the present perfect.

  • +1, and I'd like it even better if you added a note about the other problems with the given sentence (lack of article before Playstation and use of everyday instead of every day). – Hellion Mar 16 '16 at 16:12
  • The OP didn't ask about every error in the sentence, just the tense. It made more sense to focus not only on the actual question, but on a single, discrete issue. But thanks for the upvote! – fjack Mar 17 '16 at 2:14

The sentence

I played it almost everyday.

makes no sense; in order to correct it we have to write

I played with it almost everyday.

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