In English we use the Simple Past to express the following:
An action started and ended in the past.
I took a long walk yesterday.
Negative: I did not take a long walk yesterday.
Interrogative: Did you take a long walk yesterday?
Yesterday I spoke to my mother, decided to visit her, but realized that my car wouldn’t start.
Negative: Yesterday I didn’t speak to my mother, I didn’t visit her, and I didn’t realize that my car wouldn’t start.
Interrogative: Did you speak to your mother yesterday? Did you visit her yesterday? Did your car start yesterday?
A duration that started and ended in the past.
I lived in America for 18 years. (What are the negative and interrogative forms?)
They watched TV all day yesterday.
A habit that started and ended in the past.
When I was a child I was afraid of the dark.
He always cleaned his car on the week-end.
General statements about the past.
Phone calls used to cost a lot of money.
She hated mushrooms before she moved to China.
The active / passive voice.
Active: The snake bit the man.
Passive: The man was bitten by the snake.