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I found a phrase "I still remember playing while ...", it was a past tense I suppose but why is there not the "to be" for the -ing form? Why is I still remember playing correct without the "to be"?

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  • There's also I still remember [that] I played while …, if you want to use the other verb form. – Jason Bassford Jun 21 '20 at 14:09
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"Playing" here is not a present participle, it is a gerund, i.e. a verb form that is used in place of a noun.

Example

The boy is playing. (present participle)

The boy enjoys playtime. ("playtime" is a noun and is the direct object)

The boy enjoys playing. ("playing" is a noun-equivalent and is the direct object of the verb "enjoy")

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