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SEO52

Irene

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Learning Spanish from English

Level 1 · 13 XP

Crowns: 0

Skills: 0

Lessons: 0

Lexemes: 0

Strength: 0%

Created: 2016-12-06
Last Goal: 2023-04-11
Timezone: UTC+3

Last update: 2023-04-11 20:00:13 GMT+3 (cached)


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Introduction


Common Phrases


Questions


Animals

Skills by StrengthCrownsDateNameOriginal Order

0.128

Introduction 8 · 2023-05-25 ^

Masculine and Feminine Nouns

In Spanish all nouns are masculine or feminine. Usually, nouns that end with an "o" are masculine, and nouns that end with an "a" are feminine. For example, "manzana" (apple) is feminine and "diario" (newspaper) is masculine.

The articles "el" and "un" are used with masculine nouns, and the articles "la" and "una" are used with feminine nouns. "The apple" is "la manzana" and "a newspaper" is "un diario."

Accent Marks

Vowels in Spanish can have an accent mark, such as the "u" in "menú" (menu). One use of the accent mark is to indicate which syllable should be stressed in the pronunciation. For example, in "teléfono" (telephone), the second "e" has the most stress.

Accent marks are also used to distinguish homophones. For example, "él" and "el" are homophones because they have the same pronunciation. However, "él" is a masculine pronoun (meaning "he" or "him") and "el" is a masculine article (meaning "the").

The Second Person Singular

"Tú," "usted" and "vos" are different ways of referring to the second person singular (you). "Usted" is the formal way of saying "you," and "vos" is used in informal speech in certain countries instead of "tú."

The three pronouns are synonyms, but they change the way verbs are conjugated. For instance, for the verb "comer" (to eat), it is "tú comes," "usted come," and "vos comés."

The decision of which form of "you" to use is regional and cultural, but you can typically use "usted" when referring to strangers.

Verb Conjugation

Verb conjugation in Spanish is more complicated than in English. In Spanish, the verb endings change in order to describe who is doing the action and when. For example, for "comer," "I eat" is "yo como" and "you eat" is "tú comes."

Because the conjugations indicate who is doing the action, it is usually possible to omit the pronoun. For instance instead of saying "yo como arroz" (I eat rice), you can say "como arroz."

Basics 1 1 · 2019-03-13 ^

Masculine and Feminine Nouns

In Spanish all nouns are masculine or feminine. Usually, nouns that end with an "o" are masculine, and nouns that end with an "a" are feminine. For example, "manzana" (apple) is feminine and "diario" (newspaper) is masculine.

The articles "el" and "un" are used with masculine nouns, and the articles "la" and "una" are used with feminine nouns. "The apple" is "la manzana" and "a newspaper" is "un diario."

Accent Marks

Vowels in Spanish can have an accent mark, such as the "u" in "menú" (menu). One use of the accent mark is to indicate which syllable should be stressed in the pronunciation. For example, in "teléfono" (telephone), the second "e" has the most stress.

Accent marks are also used to distinguish homophones. For example, "él" and "el" are homophones because they have the same pronunciation. However, "él" is a masculine pronoun (meaning "he" or "him") and "el" is a masculine article (meaning "the").

The Second Person Singular

"Tú," "usted" and "vos" are different ways of referring to the second person singular (you). "Usted" is the formal way of saying "you," and "vos" is used in informal speech in certain countries instead of "tú."

The three pronouns are synonyms, but they change the way verbs are conjugated. For instance, for the verb "comer" (to eat), it is "tú comes," "usted come," and "vos comés."

The decision of which form of "you" to use is regional and cultural, but you can typically use "usted" when referring to strangers.

Verb Conjugation

Verb conjugation in Spanish is more complicated than in English. In Spanish, the verb endings change in order to describe who is doing the action and when. For example, for "comer," "I eat" is "yo como" and "you eat" is "tú comes."

Because the conjugations indicate who is doing the action, it is usually possible to omit the pronoun. For instance instead of saying "yo como arroz" (I eat rice), you can say "como arroz."

Common Phrases 8 · 2023-05-25 ^

Tardes and Noches

In English, "afternoon" comes before "evening," which in turn comes before "night." In Spanish there are only two words that cover these times of the day: "tarde" which means "afternoon," but overlaps with "evening," and "noche," which means "night" but also overlaps with "evening." Therefore, at 6:30pm it is ok to say either "buenas tardes" or "buenas noches."

Buenos Días

Even though "buenos días" literally means "good days," it is used in the mornings to mean "good morning."

Conjugation of 'Hablar'

Present indicative (presente del indicativo):

  • yo hablo
  • tú hablas
  • usted habla
  • él habla
  • ella habla
  • nosotros/as hablamos
  • ustedes hablan
  • ellos/ellas hablan

In Spanish, the most common negative word is "no". As an adverb negating a sentence, it always comes immediately before the verb.

I speak - [Yo] hablo.

I do not speak - [Yo] no hablo.

He is - [Él] es / está.

He is not - [Él] no es / está.

Possessives 1 · 2019-03-13 ^

Possessive Determiners

Possessive determiners are adjectives that are used to show ownership, such as "my" in "my dog." There are five possessive determiners in Spanish:

SpanishEnglish
mimy
tuyour (familiar singular)
suhis, her, your (formal), their
nuestroour
vuestroyour (familiar plural, used in Spain)

The first three of these have only two forms, singular and plural:

SingularPlural
mimis
tutus
susus

For example, "my dog" is "mi perro" and "my dogs" is "mis perros."

"Mi", "tu" and "su" do not have masculine and feminine forms, so for example you say "mi gato" and also "mi gata."

Nuestro and vuestro have four forms depending on the gender and number of the noun being referred to:

Singular MasculinePlural MasculineSingular FemininePlural Feminine
nuestronuestrosnuestranuestras
vuestrovuestrosvuestravuestras

For example, it is "nuestro gato," "nuestra gata," "nuestros gatos," and "nuestras gatas."

Long-form Possesive Adjectives and Pronouns

The determiners above are always used before the noun. Spanish has an additional "long-form" way to describe possession, which usually comes after the noun:

SpanishEnglish
mío, míos, mía, míasmine, my
tuyo, tuyos, tuya, tuyasyours, your (familiar singular)
suyo, suyos, suya, suyashis, hers, yours (formal), your (formal), theirs, their
nuestro, nuestros, nuestra, nuestrasours, our
vuestro, vuestros, vuestra, vuestrasyours, your (familiar plural, used in Spain)

"El gato es mío" means "The cat is mine."

Note that the possessive adjectives vary by number and gender. The change is with the nouns they modify, not with the person(s) who possess the object. For example, for a male cat you say "El gato es tuyo" (The cat is yours) regardless of whether you are talking to a man or a woman.

The short form and long forms of nuestro and vuestro and related pronouns are identical. They differ only as to whether they are used before or after the noun.

Tu Versus Tú

The two words "tu" and "tú" are pronounced the same. "Tú" is the personal pronoun meaning "you" (informal), and "tu" is the possessive adjective meaning "your" (informal).

Determiners 1 · 2019-03-13 ^

Demonstrative Determiners

Demonstrative determiners are used to point at something. In English, they are "this", "that", "these" and "those."

Spanish has three sets of demonstrative determiners, which vary by number and gender, so there are 12 in total:

Masculine SingularMasculine PluralFeminine SingularFeminine Plural
este (this)estos (these)esta (this)estas (these)
ese (that)esos (those)esa (that)esas (those)
aquel (that)aquellos (those)aquella (that)aquellas (those)
Ese/Este versus Eso/Esto

It is important to note that the masculine singular forms in the table above don't end in "-o." The words "esto" (this) and "eso" (that) are also demonstrative pronouns, but they are gender neutral and used when the gender of the noun they refer to is unkown. For example, you would say "qué es eso?" (what is that?) when you don't know if the object you're asking about is masculine or feminine.

Ese versus Aquel

Both "ese" and "aquel" and their related forms are translated to English as "that" or "those." However, they have slightly different meanings. "Ese" is more common, and usually refers to things that are closer in terms of distance or time. For example, "esos perros" would be "those dogs," whereas "aquellos perros" is closer in meaning to "those dogs over there."

To Be: Ser/Estar 1 · 2019-03-13 ^

Ser versus Estar

One of the hardest things to learn about Spanish is the distinction between the verbs "ser" and "estar," since in English they both mean "to be."

By now you should be familiar with the conjugations of "ser," such as in "él es un niño" (he is a boy), "yo soy un hombre" (I am a man), and "ustedes son mujeres" (you are women). "Estar" is also an irregular verb, and its different conjugations in the present tense are below:

PersonSerEstar
yosoyestoy
eresestás
él/ella/ustedesestá
nosotros/nosotrassomosestamos
ustedes/ellos/ellassonestán
vosotros/vosotrassoisestáis

"Ser" refers to what something is, while estar refers more to what something does. For example, "estoy enfermo" would mean "I am being sick" or "I am currently sick." On the other hand "soy enfermo" translates to something closer to "I am a sick person" or "I am sickly." Below are more examples:

EstarSer
Estoy feliz = I am currently happySoy feliz = I am happy by nature
Estoy cansada = I am currently tiredSoy cansada = I am a tired person
Él está callado = He is being quietÉl es callado = He is introverted

You can think of "ser" as being equivalent to "equals." Alternatively, you can think of "estar" as refering to a temporary condition, while "ser" frequently refers to a permanent condition. However there are some exceptions. For example, "ser" is used in expressions of time, such as "son las cuatro de la tarde" (it's 4 in the afternoon). Also, "estar" is used to indicate someone has died, so "he is dead" would be "está muerto."

Object Pronouns 1 · 2019-03-13 ^

Object Pronouns

In English, the words "he" and "I" can be used as subjects (the ones doing the action in a sentence), and they change to "him" and "me" when they are objects (the ones the action is applied to). For example, we say "He likes me" and "I like him." "Me," "him", "her," etc. are called object pronouns.

Objects pronouns can either be direct or indirect. The direct object is the thing or person that is directly receiving the action. For example, "him" is the direct object in "she likes him." The indirect object is the receiver of the direct object. For example, "him" is the indirect object in "she writes him a book."

In English, object pronouns are the same for both direct and indirect objects, but in Spanish they can change.

The object pronouns in Spanish are:

Subject PronounDirect Object PronounIndirect Object Pronoun
yome (me/to me)
te (you/to you)
él
usted (masc)
lo (him, it; you)le (to him/her/it/you)
ella
usted (fem)
la (her, it; you)
nosotros/nosotrasnos (us/to us)
vosotros/vosotrasos (you/to you)
ellos
ustedes (masc)
los (them; you)les (to them/you)
ellas
ustedes (fem)
las (them; you)

Unlike in English where object pronouns go after the verb ("I see him"), Spanish object pronouns are generally placed directly before the verb. Below are some examples:

EnglishSpanish
You write me a bookMe escribes un libro
I see you from my houseTe veo desde mi casa
I see himYo lo veo
I see herYo la veo
She writes a book to himElla le escribe un libro a él
He sees usÉl nos ve
I see themYo los veo a ellos/Yo las veo a ellas
I write them a bookYo les escribo un libro a ellos/ellas

Further clarification about who the sentence is talking about can always be added. For example, "I see him" can be translated as "Yo lo veo" and "Yo lo veo a él." Sometimes this clarification is necessary in order to remove ambiguity, while other times it is simply redundant. For example, "Yo los veo" is ambiguous because it could mean "I see them" or "I see you guys," so unless it is clear from context you would say "Yo los veo a ellos" or "Yo los veo a ustedes." However, "él nos ve" and "él nos ve a nosotros" mean exactly the same thing, since there is no ambiguity with "nos."

Food 2 1 · 2018-10-25 ^

Sí Versus Si

Although "sí" and "si" sound the same, "sí" (with an accent mark) means "yes" and "si" means "if."

Y, E, O, U

The word for "and" in Spanish is "y," and the word for "or" is "o." However, if the word after "and" starts with an "i" or "hi" (which sounds the same as "i" because the "h" in Spanish is always silent), then you need to use "e" instead of "y." For example "sons and daughters" is "hijos e hijas." Similarly, if the word after "or" starts with "o" or "ho," then you have to use "u" instead of "o." For example, "dog or bear" is "perro u oso."

Verbs: Phrasal Future Tense 1 · 2018-10-25 ^

Phrasal Future

There are two future tenses in Spanish. The easier one to learn is the so called "phrasal future," in which the verb "ir" (to go) is used an auxiliary. Much like in English, where you can express future by saying "I am going to run tomorrow," in Spanish you can say "Voy a correr mañana." Thus, the future is formed by conjugating the irregular verb "ir" to the appropriate person, then adding the word "a," and then the infinitive of the main verb. Below are the conjugations of the verb "ir," followed by examples of phrasal future.

PersonConjugation
yovoy
vas
él/ella/ustedva
nosotros/nosotrasvamos
ustedes/ellos/ellasvan
vosotros/vosotrasvais
SpanishEnglish
Yo voy a pensarI am going to think
Tú vas a comerYou are going to eat
Ella va a trabajarShe is going to work
Nosotros vamos a comerWe are going to eat
Ellas van a trabajarThey are going to work

Places 7 · 2023-05-25 ^

Places

Questions 5 · 2023-05-25 ^

The Upside Down Question Mark

In written Spanish, questions should always start with an upside down question mark (¿). For example, to ask “What are you eating?” you would write “¿Qué comes?”

Position of Personal Pronouns

When asking a question, it is possible to place the personal pronoun in different places without affecting the meaning. For example “¿Qué comes tú?” and “¿Tú qué comes?” mean the same thing (and also the same thing as “¿Qué comes?”).

The position of the personal pronoun is sometimes used for emphasis. For example “Tú qué comes” places the emphasis on “you” and would mean something like “You, what are you eating?”

“Por qué” versus “Porque”

Even native speakers sometimes confuse “por qué” and “porque,” because they sound exactly the same. However, “por qué” means “why” and “porque” means “because.” That is, “por qué” is typically used when asking a question and “porque” is used when answering it.

  • Q: “¿Por qué no eres un niño?” (Why are you not a boy?)
  • A: “Porque soy una niña” (Because I am a girl)

Animals 5 · 2023-05-25 ^

Adjectives. As a general rule, in Spanish adjectives come after the noun they describe, e.g.

An English dog / Un perro inglés

A Spanish horse / Un caballo español


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