Back to School

Yay! It’s my favorite time of year. Nothing better than new notebooks, a fresh pack of markers, some new shiny tabs! I miss back-to-school shopping. There was always something so promising heading off to your first day of school, your backpack full of new binders, neatly organized.

Get back into the groove with some Spanish or Study Skills lessons to stay on top of your classes this year!

Happy Back-to-School time!

Subjunctive What??

As you’ve probably noticed…Spanish has a million verb tenses.  Okay, not really a million, more like 14.  Perhaps one of the most common (0r confusing) is the Subjunctive tense.  It’s a little difficult to explain because we don’t have a subjunctive tense in English, only a Subjunctive Mood.  The Subjunctive, tense or mood is used to express doubts, wishes, and conjecture….when we think something might happen, but it may not.

Subjunctive Mood (English):

I hope that we can go the the beach this weekend. (We may or may not)

See how were not using a different tense in English to express doubt?  Just the good old present tense.

Subjunctive Tense (Spanish):

-We use this tense to express:

Wishes

Emotions

Needs

Doubts/desires

Impersonal Expressions (weird name, but IEs are expressions where there is no particular subject, but a general statement, i.e. “It is best that we leave now so we’re not late.”)

To form the Subjunctive Tense in Spanish we use the opposite verb endings:

AR Verbs

yo- e
tú- es
él- enosotros- emos
uds.- en

IR/ER Verbs

yo- a
tú- as
él- a
nosotros- amos
uds.- an

We also (generally) have two verb phrases joined by “que”:

(Yo) Espero que ellos lleguen temprano.
I hope that they arrive early.

Formula: Subject 1 Verb 1 (present tense) + que Subject 2 Verb 2 (subjunctive tense).

The reason for this formula is:

There is NO doubt that I want them to arrive early (that’s why Verb 1 is in the present tense)

BUT I don’t know if they will be early or not (that’s why Verb 2 is in the subjunctive tense)

 

Hopefully that’s not too much of a brain-scrambler! More to come soon!

 

Preterite vs. Imperfect

Spanish has two past tenses.  I know that sounds weird…how can that be?  Well, I’ll tell you.  In Spanish, the Preterite tense is used when we have a completed action in the past, with a specific time frame.

Example:

Last night we ate spaghetti. (Last night is my time frame and we know it’s a completed action because I can’t ‘un-eat’ my spaghetti).

Español:

Anoche comimos los fideos (noodles).

The other past tense, the Imperfect is used for an ongoing action in the past, where there is no specific time frame.

Example:

We ate noodles every Friday last winter.

Here I know I’m using the Imperfect because this was an ongoing action in the past….every single Friday last winter.

Español:

Nosotros comíamos los fideos cada viernes el invierno pasado.

For more examples and practice visit my store at:

https://meganmoody.selz.com

la nieve

Here in the South we have witnessed the effects for Winter Storm Pax and I’ll say this, it’s not too bad.  We have a lot of snow and I even ventured out in it today for a little while.  For me, that’s a big feat, I hate being cold.  And I’ll tell you one thing, my cats certainly don’t like it at all!  In honor of our weather I thought I’d share some winter vocabulary.

la nieve- snow
el frío- cold
el hielo- ice
blanco- white
el copo de nieve- snowflake
el invierno- winter
la tormenta- storm

Photo

Photo

New Year New Things

So, when I studied abroad in Argentina (I can’t believe that was 6 years ago now!), I decided to take a Portuguese class.  No, I wasn’t thinking clearly.  And after one semester of a class that met once a week for three hours at a time, I definitely wouldn’t recommend it.  Not that I didn’t like the language, as a matter of fact, I loved it.  But taking a third language in your second language isn’t such a bright idea.  

I don’t ever remember being so tired.  After those classes my brain would be fried.  If I didn’t know a word in Spanish, then I couldn’t learn what it was in Portuguese….what I needed was a English/Spanish/Portuguese dictionary.  I remember taking the oral exam at the end of the semester.  My best friend was my partner and near the end of the exam, we didn’t know if the professor was speaking Portuguese or Spanish….but we made it through and did well.

Now, six years later I’ve decided to give Portuguese another chance.  And I’ve learned that I can really understand it pretty well, but the pronunciation is very different from Spanish and has a very nasal sound at times.  I’ve really enjoyed it so far and hope to practice it a lot this year!

What new things have you started in 2014?

 

 

el patio de mi casa

el patio de mi casa es particular

cuando llueve se moja

como los demás

H I J K L LL M A

que si tú no me quieres orto niño me querrá

H I J K L LL M A

que si tú no me qiueres otro niño me querrá

corre corre

que te pio

chocolate molido

achupe achupe

sentadito me querré

feliz año nuevo

It’s almost the New Year!  I can’t believe that another year has gone, but I’ve had so much fun helping everyone study and prepare this year and I’m really looking forward to doing the same in 2014! 

Don’t forget to eat 12 grapes on New Year’s Eve, one for each gong of the clock!  It’s hard, I won’t lie, but if you can do it just imagine how much good luck you’ll have next year!

Do you have any New Year’s traditions?  Chinese food? A special cake?

In our family we always have a seafood feast! Yum yum!!