# Thread: How do you know that? vs How did you know that?

1. ## How do you know that? vs How did you know that?

Hi teachers,
If this is what the students will hear:
Sit down, Inspector, and listen,’ the Chief said. ‘We need to find this man quickly. The President is not happy. You’re a good policeman, Inspector, and this is an important job for you.

Assuming that we know that the Chief' is a woman, which is the correct question?
a)Was the Chief being nice to the Inspector? How
do you know that?
b)Was the Chief being nice to the Inspector? How
did you know that?
Yes, she was; she told him that he was a good policeman.

Thanks in advance.

2. ## Re: How do you know that? vs How did you now that?

Originally Posted by learning54
Hi teachers,
If this is what the students will hear:
Sit down, Inspector, and listen,’ the Chief said. ‘We need to find this man quickly. The President is not happy. You’re a good policeman, Inspector, and this is an important job for you.

Assuming that we know that the Chief' is a woman, which is the correct question?
a)Was the Chief being nice to the Inspector? How
do you know that?
b)Was the Chief being nice to the Inspector? How
did you know that?
Yes, she was; she told him that he was a good policeman.

Thanks in advance.
If you ask the question now and receive an answer now - use "do".
If you ask the question now about some thought that occurred in the past - use "did".

"How do you know that"? As of this time, where did the knowledge come from?
"How did you know that"? Concerning a time in the past.

This is similar to - "How do you know that two plus two is four"? - "Because I remembered it".
"How did you know that two plus two is four"? "Because I added the numbers last week".

3. ## Re: How do you know that? vs How did you now that?

Hi Gillnetter,
Thank you for your help.
Then, to me, it's letter 'a'. The students get both questions at the same time.

L.

4. ## Re: How do you know that? vs How did you know that?

My first reaction is that we can't tell if the Chief is being nice to him. She is nice about him when she says he is a good policeman but she could say that as part of a real telling-off. She could be very stern and angry with him and she could still say he was a good policeman.

5. ## Re: How do you know that? vs How did you know that?

Hi,
The Chief according to the text is as cold as ice, a tough woman. So, if she said that, if the Chief was nice to him, it was because she had some hidden interest.

L.

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