Past | Used to

Listen to two friends talk about what they did as kids.

Paul: Hey Judy, have you always been this quiet?

Judy: No, when I was a kid, I used to always been running around, being playful.

Paul: Really? What did you use to get up to then?

Judy: Well, I used to have a big group of friends and we would spend all our time together. We used to play games, sports and go shopping. We always found so much to talk about and we never cared about others around us. It’s different now. How about you Paul? What did you use to do when you were young?

Paul: Hmm, actually, I used to collect stamps. I don’t anymore though, I spend a lot of time on my own at home. Oh, and I used to have long hair.

Judy: Really? I can't see you with long hair.

Paul: Yeah, I doubt that would suit me now.

Grammar Notes

Point 1: We can use 'used to' to talk about things we did regularly in the past but do not do anymore.
  1. I used to play football as a kid. (I do not play now).
  2. Tom never used to exercise at college. (He exercises now).
Point 2: We can use 'used to' to talk about how someone's appearance has changed.
  1. I used to have long hair. (It is short now).
  2. That house used to look so beautiful. (It is not beautiful now).
Point 3: We can use 'used to' to talk about past states.
  1. I used to have a sports car. (I do not now).
  2. She used to enjoy going out. (She doesn’t enjoy it now).
Point 4: Note, the question form is 'use to'.
  1. Did she use to be so bad?
  2. What did you use to like at school?
Answer these questions about the interview.

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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
used to • use
used • was
  1. I a good child.
  2. I have long hair.
  3. Did you my toothpaste?
  4. I to be very unhappy.