Questions words in Simple Past

You will study Question words in Simple Past.


Questions words in Simple Past

Nuclear arms race

Imagen: United States and Soviet Union nuclear stockpiles. Public Domain.

Instructions: Read the text and look at the words in bold.

When did the US and the USSR get involved in the nuclear arms race?

The United States, the Soviet Union, and their respective allies got involved in the nuclear arms race during the Cold War. The nuclear arms race was a competition for supremacy in nuclear warfare between the two superpowers. During this period, in adition to the American and Soviet nuclear stockpiles, other countries developed nuclear weapons, though none engaged in warhead production on nearly the same scale as the two superpowers.

Nuclear arms race. Retrieved and adapted October, 2016 from


Getting started: Nuclear arms and Einstein

Instructions: Read the text to do the activities suggested.

As soon as World War II ended in 1945, new hostilities emerged between the United States and the Soviet Union. The conflict, known as the Cold War, began as a struggle to control the conquered areas of Eastern Europe in the late 1940s and continued into the early 1990s. Initially, only the United States possessed atomic weapons, but in 1949 the Soviet Union tested an atomic bomb and the arms race began. Both countries continued building more and bigger bombs. In 1952, the United States tested a new and more powerful weapon: the hydrogen bomb. The Soviet Union followed with its own version in 1953.

Albert Einstein watched with horror how the two superpowers seemed to move closer and closer to a nuclear war. He was convinced that the only way to prevent the annihilation of humankind was to prevent future wars, and spoke out in favor of international cooperation and disarmament.

Nuclear arms race. Retrieved and adapted October, 2016 from

Questions and answers

Instructions: Match the questions and answers according to the text.


In Eastern Europe.
He spoke out in favor of disarmament.
For almost 45 years.
When War World II was over

1. When did the Cold War begin?

2. Where did the two superpowers want to have control?

3. How long did the conflict last?

4. What did Albert Einstein do against the conflict?

Question words in Simple Past

Let’s learn how to use Question words in the Simple Past tense.

Instructions: Read about Question words in the Simple Past tense.

If we want to get specific information about the past we can use Question Words.

We also use the auxiliary DID and Simple form of the verb in the questions. Examples:

When did you study for the exam?
Where did Gustav work last year?
What did they do on the weekend?

Look at the word order:

Question word Auxiliary Did Subject Verb (Simple form) Complement? Answers
When did you study hard for the exam? All the weekend.
Where did James play the guitar? At a party.
What did Caroline did last vacation? She went to Europe.
How long did she stay there? Two weeks.
Why did they work so hard? They wanted to get married.


Question words with Did

Instructions: Drag and drop the following question words into the right place:

How far

1. did you visit? My grandmother.

2. did you eat? A delicious cake.

3. did he go? We went to the movies.

4. did it rain last? It rained a few days ago.

5. did they return home? By plane.

6. did you walk? I walk for two blocks.

7. did she come? To ask about the homework.


My last vacation

Instructions: Read the text and match the questions with the correct answers.

Sadly, my last vacation was more than a year ago – a vacation with my family to Hilton Head Island. We stayed in a beautiful place about five minute walk to the beach, which was wonderful. I went out with my cousins one night for Karaoke. We had a nice dinner and were treated like family. Every day I got up early to see the sunrise and had fun relaxing on the beach. We ate a lot of fresh seafood. I spent a lot of time with my family. I hope to be able to take another vacation again soon.

His family
Every day
More that a year ago.
Relax on the beach and spend time with his family.
To Hilton Head Island.

1. When did Peter go on his last vacation?

2. Where did he go?

3. When did he see the sunrise?

4. What did he do?

5. Who did he go with?


Einstein and nuclear disarmament

Instructions: According to the answers write interrogative statements in past with the following Question Words:

  1. What ?
    In the last decade of his life, Einstein dedicated himself to the cause of nuclear disarmament.
  2. What ?
    "The war is won," he said in December 1945.
  3. What ?
    He also added "but the peace is not."
  4. What ?
    Einstein feared the Cold War would end with the destruction of civilization.
  5. How long ?
    Between the years 1945 and 1955, Einstein worked at his most for peace.
  6. Why?
    He worked hard for international cooperation to eliminate all nuclear weapons.
  7. Who ?
    Einstein shared his ideas with quite a number of leading scientists.

Nuclear arms race. Retrieved and adapted October, 2016 from