Many of my students have difficulty with understanding the difference between SINCE and FOR.
As you’ve probably noticed, I don’t like lengthy complicated explanations, so a while ago I created this short video lesson that will help you better understand the difference between them. Hopefully, this is clear.
Difference between SINCE and FOR - Video Lesson
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Difference between SINCE and FOR - Transcript
Hi there. Welcome to Harry’s World of Words and Phrases and English in a Minute.
We’re now going to talk about the difference between SINCE and FOR. They can be used in lots of different ways.
Just to try and simplify matters, I’m just going to give you a couple of examples as to when we use them and the differences.
we always use with the perfect tenses. Okay. And when we use since, we go back to the beginning, when something started.
So let me give you some examples.
I’ve known about the job since January. – go back to January
I have not been to the zoo since last year. – go back to last year
He has wanted to go to America since he read the stories of Huckleberry Finn. – going back to his childhood
Okay. So let’s look at for.
when we use for it’s always about specific periods of time.
I’m going to give you the exact same examples but just show you how we can use for.
I have known about the job for six weeks. – at a specific period of time six weeks
I have not been to the zoo for eight months. – that particular period of time, specific period of eight months
I have wanted to go to America for years. – a specific period years
Okay. So these are the differences between since and for and how we use them in English.
Don’t forget that we can only use SINCE with HAVE, HAS or HAD (the perfect tenses)