We use both while and when to refer to the past time. Let’s check out the basic rules for using these words.
We use when in a past time clause with the simple past tense, like this:
- When the hurricane hit, I was on vacation.
- Jack was in the middle of a meeting when his cell phone rang.
- When I saw Jane she was working on her project.
- I was about to leave the house when it started raining.
We use while in a past time clause with the past progressive tense, like this:
- While I was cooking dinner, the power went out.
- Jim said he lost his keys while he was jogging.
- While we were walking home, it started raining.
- I met up with Tommy while I was shopping in the mall.
I wrote this lesson at 10pm NYC time. What were you doing when I wrote it? Leave a comment and let me know.
If you know anyone who has trouble with this English language point, why not help them out! Just share this lesson with them.
Thanks for studying today!