The future progressive tense, also known as the future continuous tense, is used to indicate a future event that will be ongoing (or “progressive”). This construct requires the use of “to be,” as well as the verb with an -ing ending. It follows a general formula of will + to be + verb (ending in -ing).
For example, “The children will be walking to school.” You can see how “will be” tells us that this is a future event, and “walking” here indicates a continuous event. Let’s take a look at a few more future progressive tense examples.
In another article, we discuss verbs in the future perfect progressive tense. But, now, we know there’s another option for pointing toward a continuous future: the future progressive tense. Instead of saying, “The dog will have been eating,” you can say, “The dog will be eating.” Again, it indicates a future, continuous action.
Let’s think about simple future tense. It follows a straightforward, generally singular prediction into the future. For example, “I will meditate tomorrow morning.” Future progressive tense serves to extend a futuristic activity. So, “I will meditate” (single instance) becomes, “I will be meditating every morning” (continuous activity).
In a way, the future progressive tense is used to make predictions. Perhaps they’re surefire predictions. Perhaps they’re hopes and dreams. Here are a few samples.
- In two months, I will be eating a plant-based diet.
- By 3019, we will be driving spaceships.
- In a year, he will be asking for forgiveness.
- In an hour, we will be flying over the Atlantic.
- By then, we will be practicing yoga every morning.
- Joanne will be coming home for the holidays.
- The amusement park will be increasing ticket prices later this year.
Each of the examples above indicate statements that are declarative sentences. That is, they’re simply making a statement or, perhaps, answering a question. But, the future progressive tense may also be used to pose a question. The formula for these is will + subject + be + verb (ending in -ing). Here are two examples:
- Will you be eating a plant-based diet in two months?
- Will he be asking for forgiveness in a year?
- Will Joanne be coming home for the holidays?
- Will we be flying over the Atlantic soon?
- Will the amusement park be increasing ticket prices later this year?
The future progressive tense may also be used in the negative form to indicate a continuous action will not be happening in the future. The formula will read will + not + be + verb (ending in -ing). Here are two examples:
- I will not be eating a plant-based diet anytime soon.
- We will not be driving spaceships in 3019.
- He will not be asking for forgiveness in a year.
- Joanne will not be coming home for the holidays.
- The amusement park will not be increasing ticket prices later this year.
Verbs aren’t easy. They revolve around that sticky word: conjugation. No matter what language you’re learning, it’s the hardest part of the process. Sometimes, it takes rote memorization and practice; other times, it just takes a little bit of study time.
Seeing examples always helps, though. For more on this practice, check out How to Conjugate Progressive Verb Tenses. It’ll help bring it all together.