The imperfect and the preterite

Over the years I can see that those two past tenses tend to give to GCSE Spanish students a bit of a headache. Also A-Level students can´t master this properly and often get confused therefore I have done this to clarify a bit this.

If you are not a Spanish GCSE or A-Level student doesn´t matter. It is a very important to understand those two past tenses in order to be able to understand and express yourself so, don´t jump this blog and read it.

The imperfect

Also called “El pretérito imperfecto” in Spanish a lot of times translates as (was, were, doing (as used to do)

This can be a bit confusing and for that reason I am going to state some examples and hopefully will become a bit clear.

Before showing you any example I am going to write down 3 different verbs. As you probably already know in Spanish there are 3 conjugations. We look at the infinitive form and the endings are (-AR -ER and -IR) If all this sounds a bit strange for you, don´t worry look at the following 3 verbs below:

ESTUDIAR      (As you can see “estudiar” – to study” finishes with -AR this means 1st conjugation)

COMER           (As you can see “comer” – to study” finishes with -ER this means 2nd conjugation)

CONDUCIR     (As you can see “conducir” – to drive” finishes with -IR this means 3rd conjugation)

Shall we conjugate those verbs?

ESTUDIAR 

Yo                                 estudiaba

Tú                                 estudiabas

Él, Ella/Usted                estudiaba

Nosotros                       estudiábamos

Vosotros                        estudiabais

Ellos, Ellas o ustedes    estudiaban

COMER

Yo                                  comía

Tú                                  comías

Él, Ella/Usted                comía

Nosotros                       comíamos

Vosotros                        comíais

Ellos, Ellas o ustedes    comían

CONDUCIR

Yo                                  conducía

Tú                                  conducías

Él, Ella/Usted                 conducía

Nosotros                        conducíamos

Vosotros                        conducíais

Ellos, Ellas o ustedes    conducían

I am now going to invite you to follow my following link you can see an excellent comparison and use of both Preterit and Imperfect with plenty examples.

It is also a good blog so you can practise your reading skills and understanding in Spanish. At the end of the day if you are reading this blog and you are studying Spanish you are likely to understand it.

If you need more help you can always learn more Spanish with School-e.

Immediate Future in Spanish

What is the Immediate future tense? It is an action that somebody is going to do in the future or simple what is going to happen in the future. You can of course use the future tense however, here we are only going to concentrate with the Immediate Future.

If you are student in Year 8 or Year 9 and you are learning Spanish chances are your teacher will teach you the Immediate Future

How we use it?

We need three elements:

  1. the verb “ir” conjugated correctly
  2. a
  3. an infinitive verb (-AR -ER or -IR)

Of course we must conjugate correctly the verb “ir” see below:

Voy

Vas

Va

Vamos

Vais

Van

Yo                                 voy

Tú                                 Vas

Él, Ella/Usted                va

Nosotros                       vamos

Vosotros                        vais

Ellos, Ellas o ustedes    van

Ready for some practice:

You can easily now try to complete and do some of the exercises below, you have learnt how to say ‘I am going to’ and ‘we are going to’ in Spanish.  To remind you, write them here now:

I am going to =………………………………………………

We are going to =…………………………………………..

Repaso : ¿Cómo se dice en español….

I am going to go to the cinema?……………………………………………. We can use ‘Voy a’ or ‘Vamos a’ to talk about what we are going to do in the future, just as we do in English.

Actividad 1 : Rellena los huecos en el párrafo siguiente:

Mañana …………………………………………………. con mi hermano, Pedro, porque es su deporte favorito.  Luego, …………………………………………… porque es muy divertido.  Más tarde, ………………………………………………… con mis padres en un restaurante y luego………………………………………… .

  1. Voy a jugar al fútbol          3  Vamos a jugar con los amigos
  2. Voy a dormir                     4  Vamos a comer

Match up the following to find out how to say ‘you are going to’, ‘he/she is going to’, ‘they are going to’.  Which one is missing?

1 You are going to…….. (one person)            A    Van a …….

2 He/She is going to………..                         B     Vas a ……

3 They are going to ……..                            C     Va a ……..

Actividad 2

Use the paragraph in Actividad  1 as a model, I want you to write your own short paragraph telling me what you are going to do this summer.  I want you to include opinions and reasons why (Level 4) and use ‘Voy a’ or ‘Vamos a’ to achieve a level 5!  There are some words below to help you.

Este verano – this summer             En verano – in summer

En julio/agosto                                In July/August

Viajar – to travel                            visitar – to visit

Comprar – to buy                            regalos – presents

Jugar – to play                                nadar – to swim

Tomar el sol                                    to sunbathe 

Ir a la playa – to go to the beach    comer – to eat

From the starter activity, you have learnt how to say ‘I am going to’ and ‘we are going to’ in Spanish.  To remind you, write them here now:

I am going to =…………………………………………………

We are going to =……………………………………………..

Repaso : ¿Cómo se dice en español….I am going to go to the cinema?……………………………………………. We can use ‘Voy a’ or ‘Vamos a’ to talk about what we are going to do in the future, just as we do in English.

ctividad 1 : Rellenad los huecos en el párrafo siguiente:

Mañana …………………………………………………. con mi hermano, Pedro, porque es su deporte favorito.  Luego, …………………………………………… porque es muy divertido.  Más tarde, ………………………………………………… con mis padres en un restaurante y luego………………………………………… .

  1. Voy a jugar al fútbol                        3  Vamos a jugar con los amigos
  2. Voy a dormir                                    4  Vamos a comer

Match up the following to find out how to say ‘you are going to’, ‘he/she is going to’, ‘they are going to’.  Which one is missing?

1 You are going to…….. (one person)            A    Van a …….

2 He/She is going to………..                         B    Vas a …….

3 They are going to ……..                            C    Va a ……..

Actividad 2

Use the paragraph in Actividad  1 as a model, I want you to write your own short paragraph telling me what you are going to do this summer.  I want you to include opinions and reasons why (Level 4) and use ‘Voy a’ or ‘Vamos a’ to achieve a level 5!  There are some words below to help you.

Este verano – this summer              En verano – in summer

En julio/agosto                                In July/August

Viajar – to travel                            visitar – to visit

Comprar – to buy                             regalos – presents

Jugar – to play                                nadar – to swim

Tomar el sol                                    to sunbathe 

Ir a la playa – to go to the beach    comer – to eat

Match up the Spanish to the English For example, 1 = G

1  Voy a jugar a fútbol                                       

2  Voy a ver la televisión                                    

3  Voy a jugar al tenis                               

4  Voy a montar en bicicleta        

5  Voy a ir al parque                                          

6  Voy a hacer mis deberes  

7  Vamos a jugar a los videojuegos                      

8  Vamos a escuchar música 

9  Vamos a ir al cine                                    

10  Vamos a comer con mi familia    

A  I’m going to go to the park     

B  I’ m going to do my homework

C  I’m going to watch television

D  We are going to listen to music

E  I’m going to play tennis

F  We are going to eat with my family

G  I’m going to play football

H  I’m going to ride my bike

I  We are going to play videogames       

J  We are going to go to the cinema

Now try this:

How do we say in Spanish

‘We are going to?’……………………………..

‘I am going to’……………………….………

Translate the following:   

Mañana voy a visitor a mis abuelos

………………………………………………………….

El fin de semana que viene vamos a visitar Londres porque me gustan los museos

…………………………………………………………..

El mes que viene voy a salir con mis amigos porque es mi cumpleaños


…………………………………………………………..

Tonight I’m going to play basketball and afterwards I’m going to eat a pizza


…………………………………………………………..

report-sample

This is a good report from an old Spanish student:

 

Mark has made very good progress in Spanish. He remembers new sentences easily. He is really good at listening and giving answers out loud correctly. He did a great recorded audio with his peer and he clearly exceeds expectations. His pronunciation is really good. He just needs to keep an eye on the “j” sound sometimes like “jugar” ¡Excelente, Mark!

 

This is a normal report from another student:

Alex is quietly making progress with his Spanish. He can write easy Spanish sentences and describe people, sports and he can introduce himself. Sometimes he needs a bit more support but he works hard and completes most of his classwork. ¡Muy bien, Alex!

 

En la Granja de mi tio – Learn some animals with this Spanish fun Song

Featured

You can watched this video and see your children enjoy this Spanish song.

En la granja de mi tío IA, IA, OO!!

The children can learn some new animals like VACA, GATO, PATO, CABRA and PERRO in this order (COW, CAT, DUCK, GOAT and DOG). Let them watched and enjoy with them.  Suitable for Nurseries and Key Stage 1.

https://youtu.be/yYveAL2xpMQ

Of course you can also practise some other animals with them:

Oveja    Conejo     Ratón     Cisne     Ciervo    Cerdo     Pavo    Gallina

Do you know those words?

Listen and repeat those animals with me:

If you are trying to help your son or daughter to learn Spanish or yourself but can´t find the time to do a course perhaps you would like to buy one of these Spanish courses and you can learn Spanish at your own peace.

Some advice about learning Spanish as second language

When my children should start learning a second language?

As soon as possible! Do you know that you could teach your baby? Explore this. How long did it take to you to learn your mother tongue language? Why some people keep insisting that my son or daughter are too young to learn a language!

Another excuse they should learn one language properly first…

Progress will be slow during the first few years… (and exponential later on is not mentioned)

At the end of the day is not my child is your child you do what you think will be better I only can talk about my experience as a dad.

In fact our Spanish tuition in Manchester started a few years ago when our son was born. We were actually looking for some language providers due to its importance as I am Spanish and my wife is English.

Some providers were offering one thing but lacking others, after several years of research in some other aspects. We tried different things and in the end we decided to start our own business based in our experience and research.

Both of our children ages 10 and 13 are fully bilingual and we are proud of having achieved this. Some of you may think it is easy because in our case their dad is Spanish. The children are at school full time, everything is in English and no Spanish is supplied in that school as they do French.

However I can tell you that is not easy and is a really long process and a lot of patience for the second language. I will really love to see more support from the government and the primary schools. I am not seeing enough time and enough financial support in order to build a good base. It is not a surprise for me at all that there are not enough MFL teacher´s. It is not a surprise at all either that there are not enough students interested in languages. Children in secondary schools are scared. Of course will you not? I could go on and on about this. Just think about it! If you are a builder you will build the foundations of the house first and then you will setup the layers of bricks. You will not build the roof first. Would´t it?

On the other hand we know some other families with the same exposure to the language and the children they might understand Spanish but they don´t speak Spanish. Of course there are different methods and approaches we are not saying ours is the best, we are only proud our children speak English and Spanish with proper English and Spanish accent.

Research has shown that learning another language is not only useful for travelling the world, it also gives children a deeper understanding of their own and other cultures, improves problem solving skills and increases their capacity for learning generally. Additional benefits include higher scores on standardized tests, increased self-confidence and social skills, and often children will be motivated to learn additional languages at a later stage of their development.

In our Spanish tuition in Manchester we make learning Spanish fun through activities, songs, games, worksheets, audiovisual material and an interactive website.

You can make use of educational software products in your lessons, one of the World leader in Spain of bi-lingual educational materials, with currently millions of children worldwide using these products to learn another language (English/Spanish) we believe is Pipo. However you can find some others that are also really good and less price.

Children have a curiosity about new things and they love copying and repeating, this of course is an ideal starting point for learning Spanish.

By looking at what is surrounding them and listening to the sounds of everyday life, children soak up the Spanish, English or any other language without being fully conscious of it. They hear and they see and they develop the new language.

So childhood is the best time to learn a language because it can be done without children realising they are actually learning a language.

In our Spanish tuition in Manchester we do this and we are proud of the benefits of learning a second language that we are engaging with all of the children we are teaching.

We hope we answered the question however if you are in doubt the answer is as soon as possible better.

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