Preterite AR Verbs Spanish Verb Conjugation
Hola, and welcome to the Spanish “spine verb” section. The correct grammatical name for this verb tense is the “preterite” tense. If you are taking Spanish in school or with a tutor or teacher, they will usually call it the “preterite” tense. Because the word “preterite” is hard to relate to anything we have nicknamed this tense the “spine” tense after the spine in your back. First of all, your spine is in back of you, representing the past tense. If you run your hand left to right across your back, you will feel that there is a definite starting point and ending point to your spine. Like your spine, the spine tense represents a singular event in time that has a definite starting and ending point.
Here are a few examples of spine verbs.
Just like with our comparison with the spine, with each of these verbs, the situation started, had a definite ending, and happened in the past. The next lesson will teach you to conjugate using the “spine” or “preterite” tense.
Ar Spine Spanish Verbs Explanation
Let’s learn how to conjugate “ar” spine verbs or otherwise called the “preterite” tense. We’ll use the verb “hablar” which means “to talk or speak”.
|If I want to say I spoke, I would say||(Yo) hablé||We spoke would be||(Nosotros) hablamos
Notice that this conjugation is the same as the present tense. This is correct and the only way to tell the difference between present and the past spine tense is by the context. For example, “hablamos ayer” would be “we spoke yesterday”. And, “hablamos hoy” would be “We speak today”.
|To say Juan or María, You spoke I would say||(Tú) hablaste||(tú plural – used only in Spain) would be||(Vosotros) hablasteis|
|He spoke would be
She spoke would be
You spoke would be
|They spoke would be
They (women) spoke would be
All of you spoke would be
Now take a look at the Spine AR endings one more time and repeat them.
Now let’s try a few of these:
|All of you spoke||Hablaron|
Let’s take one more look at the “ar” spine verb endings:
Now we’ll practice with a few different verbs. Are you ready?
|I danced||(Yo) bailé|
|You rested – using “tú”||(Tú) descansaste|
|He studied||(Él) estudió|
|She visited||(Ella) visitó|
|You traveled – using “usted”||(Ud.) viajó|
|We called||(Nosotros) llamamos|
|They drove||(Ellos) manejaron|
|All of you practiced||(Uds.) practicaron|
How did you do? Before going on to the practice session, we need to learn a few new words and take a look at some usage situations.
First our new Vocabulary
|the milk||la leche|
|all night||toda la noche|
|this morning||esta mañana|
|the window||la ventana|
|the beans||los frijoles|
|the party||la fiesta|
|last month||el mes pasado|
Now we’ll take a brief look at a couple of usage situations. The verb “to enter” in Spanish is “entrar”. If you add a location after the word “entrar”, you need to put the word “en” afterwards. – For example, if you say I enter the house, in Spanish you would say “Entro en la casa” and if you say “I enter the car” you would say “Entro en el carro”.
Now, our final usage example: When you say “to try”, then add another verb, you have to add the word “de” between them. For example: “I tried to eat” – in past tense - would be “traté de comer”, the phrase “He tried to run would be “trató de correr”, and the phrase “We tried to speak” would be “tratamos de hablar” Remember, the AR verb “nosotros” form is the same in the present tense as well as the past tense. In the following Practice Session, you’ll have the chance to conjugate many ar spine verbs.
Spanish Practice Session – Spine Practice
Now, we’ll go ahead and begin our “ar” spine verb practice. As usual, you’ll read a phrase in English and you try to conjugate it into Spanish.
|I answered||Yo contesté|
|(Marta) You bought it (la leche)||La compraste|
|He called her yesterday.||La llamó ayer|
|She changed it.||Lo cambió|
|(Sra. Benites) You didn’t clean it (la ventana)||No la limpió|
|We cooked them (los frijoles) yesterday||Los cocinamos ayer|
|They danced last night.||Bailaron anoche|
|All of you drew one.||Dibujaron uno|
|I drove to the store.||Manejé a la tienda|
|(Martín) You ate dinner last night.||Cenaste anoche|
|He explained it well.||Lo explicó bien|
|She fixed it yesterday||Lo arregló ayer|
|(Sr. Mendes) You helped me this morning||Me ayudó esta mañana|
|We invited them (ellos) last week||Los invitamos la semana pasada|
|They kept the money.||Guardaron el dinero|
|All of you listened well.||Escucharon bien|
|I watched TV last week.||Miré la televisión la semana pasada|
|(Juana) You painted it (la casa) last week||La pintó la semana pasada|
|He planned the party||Planeó la fiesta|
|She rested a lot this morning||Descansó mucho esta mañana|
|(Sra. Olivares) You never returned.||Nunca regresó|
|We sent it (la carta) yesterday||La mandamos ayer|
|They never sang it (la canción)||Nunca la cantaron|
|All of you studied a lot.||Estudiaron mucho|
|I swam last month||Nadé el mes pasado|
|I entered the store||Entré en la tienda|
|(Martín) You never took it||Nunca lo tomaste|
|He traveled last month||Viajó el mes pasado|
|She used it (la computadora) a lot||La usó mucho|
|(Sr. Mendoza) You visited them (ellos)||Los visitó|
|We waited for her all night||La esperamos toda la noche|
|She tried to eat||Trató de comer|
|They walked to the park last month||Caminaron al parque el mes pasado|
|All of you worked a lot last month||Trabajaron mucho el mes pasado.|
Repeat this lesson if you’re not comfortable with it yet. Otherwise go ahead and move on.