Usage examples Past Simple vs. Past Continuous

  • I was reading when the doorbell rang.

  • I went to Tokyo last month.

  • I was studying at the library all day yesterday.

  • Why was Lucy smoking at the party?

  • What were they doing when you arrived at the party?

  • Were they smiling when they saw you?

  • Was Anna having a shower when an earthquake began?

  • Were you sleeping when everything happened?

  • Someone took a picture of Tom while he was sitting on a bench.

  • Maddie came back at midnight.

  • My mother was cooking for five hours on Sunday.

  • We were playing tennis when Alex hurt his wrist.

  • While I was walking to the university, I witnessed an accident.

  • Who was Alessia talking to when you saw her?

  • When I woke up, it was snowing.

  • When I walked into the room, they were dancing.

  • Lisa was studying when Joe called her.

  • Anna was sleeping when the burglars broke into her house.

  • I wanted to call my mum but I called you instead.

  • Where was your cousin born?

  • Bob was waiting for me for two hours yesterday.

  • I broke my leg when I was skiing.

  • My mother bought a new bag yesterday.

  • Anna did not mean to hurt you.

  • Were they studying at this time yesterday?

  • I was standing in the line when I saw Mary.

  • Where was Rob going when he lost his phone?

  • The children were playing in the park when it started to rain.

  • My wife arrived when I was having a bath.

  • Just as Ted was finishing his homework, he remembered another exercise he had to do.

  • Susie was watching a film when she heard the noise.

  • What were you doing at eight o'clock last night?

  • We found the keys we were looking for yesterday.

  • The bird was singing in the garden when the cat attacked it.

  • I was watching television when my mother came home.

  • Emma called me when I was sitting on the train.

  • What was Jane wearing when you saw her at the theatre?

  • My best friend graduated from the university in June.

  • Which shop did Tom go yesterday?

  • The town was changing quickly.

  • Was your grandmother working when she met your grandfather?

  • My granddad went to see a doctor on Friday.

  • You weren't dancing at noon yesterday.

  • I met Elisa when I was going to work.

  • Who did you see at the train station?

  • Paula was running when the storm started.

  • Why were you crying when I met you?

  • Which song were you singing when I came in?