Future Continuous Tense

The Future Continuous Tense, also known as Future Progressive Tense, indicates that we will be in the middle of doing something in a specific time in the future. Future Continuous tense has two different forms, will be doing and be going to be doing. Not like Simple Future forms, Future Continuous forms are usually used interchangeably.

The General Pattern

1. Will Be Doing

Affirmative

Subject + will + be + Verb-ing (present participle) ————->>I will be doing….

Negative

Subject + will + not + be + Verb-ing (present participle)——->>I will not be doing…

Interrogative (Yes/No Question)

Will + Subject + be + Verb-ing (present participle)—————>>Will you be doing…? Yes, I will/No, I will not.

2. Be Going To Be Doing

Affirmative

Subject + be (am/is/are) + going to + be + present participle—–>>I am going to be doing…

Negative

Subject + be (am/is/are) + not + going to + be + present participle—->>I am not going to be doing….

Interrogative (Yes/No Question)

Be (am/is/are) + Subject + going to + be + present participle—->>Are you going to be doing…?Yes, I am/No I am not.


Time Signals

The time signals usually used with the Future Continuous Tense among others are at 10 a.m, tonight, tomorrow, etc.

The Uses

The Future Continuous Tense is used to express:

1. an interrupted action in the future;

The first use of the Future Continuous Tense is to show that a longer action will be happening and interrupted by a shorter action in the future. You can use the following patterns:

When + subject1 + Simple Present Tense, subject2 + Future Continuous
Or
Subject1 + Future Continuous + when + subject2 + Simple Present Tense
Examples:

  • When mom prepares the dinner, I will be reviewing my lessons tonight.
  • Will you be waiting for me at the station tomorrow when my train arrives?
  • When you come to the town, I am going to be staying at the Moon Hotel.
  • He is not going to be analyzing the result of the research this afternoon when they send the other data.

Note:
In the examples above, the interruptions (marked in italics) are sated in Simple Present Tense rather than in Simple Future since the interruptions are in time clauses (the clauses begin with when, while, before, after, by the time, as soon as, etc) and you cannot use Future Tenses in time clauses.

2. an action is happening at a specific time in the future;

The next use of future continuous is to tell an action which is happening at a specific time in the future. In this case, you can use the general pattern written above.

Examples:

  • She will be conducting an important meeting in her office at 8 tonight.
  • The contract agreement is going to be signing at 9 this morning.
  • Will you be sun bathing at the beach this Sunday morning?
  • She is not going to be taking a nap at 2 this afternoon.
  • At midnight tonight, we will be enjoying bonfire.

Note:

In Simple Future Tense, a specific time is used to show the time an action will begin or end. Yet, in the Future Continuous Tense, a specific time interrupts the action.

3. parallel actions in the future;

When Future Continuous Tense is used to tell two actions or more in the same sentence, it indicates the idea that the actions will be happening at the same time. The actions are parallel. And you can use the following patterns:

While + subject1 + Present Continuous, subject2 + Future Continuous

Or

Subject1 + future continuous + while + subject2 + present continuous

Examples:

  • While I am cleaning the house, she will be cooking for breakfast tomorrow morning.
  • While Ryan is dictating the script, Tina will be typing it.
  • The girls are going to be dancing and the boys are going to be singing today.
  • I am not going to be talking for nothing and he is going to be keeping silent when we meet tonight.
  • Tonight, my friend and I will be eating dinner and my sister and her friend will be chatting at the verandah.

Note:

Pay attention to the examples no 1 and 2 above, especially the clauses in italic. They are stated in present continuous, not the future continuous. This is because they are time clauses (the clauses begin with when, while, before, after, by the time, as soon as, etc), future forms are not used in time clauses. Yet the other examples use future continuous at the both clauses since the sentences contain no time clauses.

4. An action that is sure to happen in the near future;

Use the Future Continuous Tense to express an action which you are sure to happen soon.

Examples:

  • I’m sure she will be getting better soon because she obeys the doctor’s advice.
  • The sky is very clean, no more clouds hanging. I think the sun will be shining brightly soon.

5. Polite questions about somebody’s intentions.

The future continuous also can be used to make polite questions about something or somebody.

Examples:

  • Will you be leaving today or tomorrow?
  • Will you be going out to refresh your mind?

Check the 16 English Tenses you want to study more below!

Present

Past

Future

Past Future

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