Most ESL teachers come to this hard realization. Most students who have learned English as a second language, effectively use only three tenses: present, past, and future. And they will most likely make themselves understood, but only by resorting to these three. The present perfect is one of those tenses that is soon forgotten, easily replaced by past simple.
But students don’t realize just how important it is that they master it. To ensure your students will not let the present perfect slip into oblivion, it must be taught right. This article provides several clear steps that will help you teach the Present Perfect tense.
Introduce the Present Perfect – Regular verbs
Give examples in past simple: Yesterday, I had a busy day. I received lots of emails.
Lead in to present perfect: I have received only a few today. Show students how the present perfect is formed: have/has plus the past participle. Tell them that the past participle of regular verbs ends in –ed, just as in simple past.