This is the present tense form. It may seem to be pronounced like the English past tense, but it is the Dutch present tense. hij eet = he eats
The Dutch past tense sounds different.
hij at = he ate
Type in "eet" and "at" here to hear the difference from live native speakers. https://forvo.com/languages/nl/
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English still has a change in conjugation there.
A chld is someone that we are talking about (3rd person singular) which always takes the verb conjugation wth s at the end "eats". I eat, you eat, but he eats or she eats. Even plural forms use "eat". We eat, you eat (plural has no difference from singular in 2nd person, person spoken to) or they eat.