For, during and while

For and during

We use for + a period of time to say how long something goes on:

for two hours / for a week / for ages

  • We watched television for two hours last night.
  • Diane is going away for a week in September.
  • Where have you been? I’ve been waiting for ages.
  • Are you going away for the weekend?

We use during + noun to say when something happens (not how long):

during the film/ during our holiday/ during the night

  • I fell asleep during the film.
  • We met some really nice people during our holiday.
  • The ground is wet. It must have rained during the night.

With ‘time words’ (for example: the morning / the afternoon / the summer), you can usually say in or during:

  • It must have rained in the night, (or during the night)
  • I’ll phone you sometime during the afternoon, (or in the afternoon I

You cannot use during to say how long something goes on:

  • It rained for three days without stopping, (not during three days)

Compare during and for:

  • I fell asleep during the film.
    I was asleep for half an hour.

During and while

We use during + noun:

  • I fell asleep during the film.
  • We met a lot of interesting people

We use while + subject + verb:

  • I fell asleep while I was watching TV.
  • We met a lot of interesting people during our holiday, while we were on holiday.

Some more examples of while:

  • We saw Clare while we were waiting for the bus.
  • While you were out, there was a phone call for you.
  • Chris read a book while I watched television.

When you are talking about the future, use the present (not will) after while:

  • I’ll be in London next week. I hope to see Tom while I’m there.
    (not while I will be there)
  • What are you going to do while you are waiting? (not while you will be waiting)

 

by: http://englishwilleasy.com

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