Learn Basics of Reported Speech: Simple Present Tense

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Qi wants to play the zither

Simply, Reported Speech is a retelling of what someone had already said. And although the definition is a mouthful, Reported Speech isn’t complicated, especially if the speaker makes a Declarative Statement in Simple Present Tense.

If the aforementioned person spoke in Simple Present Tense (Pronoun, Verb, Noun), the Reported Speech will be in Simple Past Tense (Pronoun, Verb + d/ed, Preposition “to,” Noun). Be aware of irregular Verbs. Words like “say” become “said” and ETC.

Here’s an example:

Statement: I want to play the zither.

Reported Speech: Qi said that she wanted to play the zither.

A bit about grammar

What are the rules for using Reported Speech in a full sentence?

Constructing Reported Speech sentences in Simple Past Tense is like building a rudimentary structure with wooden blocks. Just put these parts together:

Report who spoke: “he/she” or Proper Name/Pronoun | Verb + d/ed Preposition “to” | Verb | Adverb.

She said that he | liked | to | eat | noodles.

Often, Verbs used with Reported Speech are “say/said, tell/told” and “mention/mentioned.” These words declare that someone else had said what the speaker is retelling.

Examples of Simple Past Tense Reported Speech

Statement: I want to sing.

Reported Speech: She said she wanted to sing.

Statement: I like to read books.

Reported Speech: He mentioned that he liked to read books.

Statement: “Rick is upset,” she said. 

Reported Speech: She said that Rick was watching upset.

Let’s practice

Q1: Write the Reported Speech for this statement: “I like jogging in the morning.”

Answer: He said that he liked jogging in the morning.

Q2: Write the Reported Speech for this statement: “I love pets,” she said.

She said that she loved pets.

Q3: Try making your own sentence and convert it to Reported Speech.

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