As the U.S. elections are right around the corner, we think now is the perfect time to learn some useful election vocabulary.
In presidential elections, the citizens of a country votan por (vote for) the candidate of their choice. In a referendum, however, voters will votar a favor de / en contra de (for or against) a particular decision.
No sé si voy a votar por Manuel u Oscar en las elecciones presidenciales.
I don't know if I am going to vote for Manuel or Oscar in the presidential elections.
Caption 33, Lecciones con Carolina Conjunciones disyuntivasPlay Caption
As we all know, political parties run campaigns to persuade citizens to vote for them. We also know about the promises that politicians make when están en campaña (they are campaigning).
"La mejor campaña" dijo, "es la del pueblo."
"The best campaign" he said, "is that of the people."
Caption 24, Andrés Manuel López Obrador En campañaPlay Caption
Interestingly, there is an expression with the word campaña that is not related to presidential or marketing campaigns. Ponerse en campaña means "to start working on something" or "become active."
está todo claro. -Nos ponemos hoy mismo en campaña.
everything is clear. -We'll start working on that today.
Caption 69, Yago 10 Enfrentamientos - Part 5Play Caption
We can find some compelling examples of electoral promises in Felipe Calderon's Campaign cuando se postulaba como presidente de México (when he was running for president of Mexico) back in 2006.
igualdad de oportunidades para todos, una democracia efectiva, que le dé sentido a nuestra vida cotidiana y finalmente desarrollo sustentable.
equal opportunity for everyone, an effective democracy that gives meaning to our everyday lives, and finally, sustainable development.
Captions 59-61, Felipe Calderón Publicidad - Part 3Play Caption
Unsurprisingly, these promises are pretty much the same in each contienda electoral (presidential race) and are often expressed at debates televisados (televised debates) before the veda electoral (election silence), the period in some countries prior to the election in which it is forbidden to show any sort of political propaganda.
Pero no sólo a los PANistas, como espero que sea el candidato de Acción Nacional en la próxima contienda presidencial de dos mil seis.
But not only the PANistas, since I hope he'll be the candidate for Acción Nacional in the next presidential race in two thousand six.
Captions 71-73, Felipe Calderón Publicidad - Part 3Play Caption
While in some countries, voting is mandatory (sufragio obligatorio), and a fine is imposed if one does not ejercer el derecho al voto (exercise one's right to vote), in countries like the U.S. or Mexico, it is optional (sufragio voluntario), and campaigns are thus conducted to encourage people to vote. Tu Rock es votar was a commercial created to persuade young people to participate in los comicios (the elections) in Mexico's 2006 presidential race. A similar campaign, as Armando explains, also enjoyed success in the U.S.:
Y lo habían hecho funcionar muy bien, y habían inscrito a más de millón y medio de jóvenes para votar en el proceso electoral norteamericano. Y ayudaron a, entre muchos otros esfuerzos,
And they had made it work very well, and they had registered more than one and a half million young people to vote in the American election process. And they helped to, among many other efforts,
Captions 20-23, Tu Rock es Votar Armando - Part 1Play Caption
The ways in which we cast our votes may also differ. Particularly in these times of COVID-19, some countries may opt for an electronic vote (voto electrónico) or mail-in voting over the traditional ballot box (urna), which brings us to the saying that el futuro del país se decidirá en las urnas (the future of the country will be decided at the ballot box). And, you may be surprised to hear Argentinians and Uruguayans speak about el cuarto oscuro (literally "the dark room"). Mind you, there is no connotation of darkness or dishonesty in this expression, which is simply the name of the voting booth in those nations.
Voting is a right and a responsibility, so we should always stay informed and carefully think it through before weighing in on who will be in charge, or, as Armando puts it:
y es elegir a quien va a tomar las riendas de este país.
and that is to choose who is going to take the reins of this country.
Caption 84, Tu Rock es Votar Armando - Part 1Play Caption
We hope you've enjoyed this lesson, and don't forget to vote! Oh, and leave us your comments and suggestions.
Do you know how to say goodbye in Spanish? Believe it or not, there are many different ways to say goodbye in Spanish. In this lesson, we will review some of the standard terms you can use as well as other alternative ways of saying goodbye in Spanish slang. Let's take a look.
If you want to know the most standard way of saying goodbye in Spanish, adiós is your go-to term. Let's hear how to pronounce it:
Caption 50, Cita médica La cita médica de Cleer - Part 2Play Caption
Bueno, mucho gusto, Ana. -Mucho gusto. Adiós. -Adiós.
Well, nice to meet you, Ana. -Nice to meet you. Goodbye. -Goodbye.
Captions 67-68, Conversaciones en el parque Cap. 3: ¿De quién es esta mochila?Play Caption
The preposition hasta (usually translated as "until" or "even" in English) is quite useful when we want to say bye to someone. While the following expressions are not as literal as adiós, people use them often when they want to say goodbye in Spanish. The idea here is, "Let's meet at some point in the future." Let's take a look:
Así que, ¡nos vemos muy pronto! ¡Hasta luego!
So, see you very soon! See you later!
Captions 83-84, Amaya Mi burro PepePlay Caption
¡Adiós, amigos de Yabla, hasta pronto!
Bye, friends of Yabla, see you soon!
Caption 51, Ariana EspañaPlay Caption
Gracias por su atención y hasta la próxima. Hasta luego.
Thank you for your attention, and see you next time. See you later.
Captions 74-75, Carlos explica Las preposiciones 'por' y 'para' - Part 2Play Caption
Hasta mañana, Ivo. -Chau, mi amor. -Chau. Chau, papá. -Chau.
See you tomorrow, Ivo. -Bye, my love. -Bye. Bye, dad. -Bye.
Captions 79-80, Muñeca Brava 43 La reunión - Part 1Play Caption
Bueno, os esperamos por Madrid. ¡Hasta la vista!
Well, we await you in Madrid. So long!
Captions 91-92, Marisa en Madrid Parque de El RetiroPlay Caption
Are you wondering how to say bye in Spanish in the shortest possible way? Look no further. These slang terms, taken from the standard Italian manner of saying goodbye (ciao), are the words you're looking for. Let's see how to pronounce chao and chau:
Bueno... Nos vemos en la casa, chao.
OK... See you at home, bye.
Caption 53, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 9 - Part 6Play Caption
porque ahora tengo un compromiso. Claro. Chau, Andrea. -Chau.
because now I have an appointment. [Is that] clear? Bye, Andrea. -Bye.
Captions 21-22, Muñeca Brava 2 Venganza - Part 9Play Caption
Ha sido un placer estar con vosotros. Nos vemos. Un saludo.
It has been a pleasure being with you. See you. A greeting.Play Caption
OK, take care.Play Caption
Solamente quería saber si usted estaba vivo todavía. Suerte, Magoo.
I just wanted to know if you were still alive. Good luck, Magoo.
Captions 36-37, Confidencial: El rey de la estafa Capítulo 1 - Part 1Play Caption
In this lesson, we will learn how to describe people in Spanish using the verb ser (to be). In particular, we'll focus on five different uses of the verb ser that you can use to identify and describe people. Let's take a look.
Eh... Luis, ella es mi mamá, mamá, él es Luis. Y ella es mi abuela Carmen.
Um... Luis, this is my mom, Mom, this is Luis. And this is my Grandma Carmen.
Captions 18-19, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 4 - Part 4Play Caption
It's worth mentioning that the example above shows a very common way to introduce people in Spanish.
es un hombre que se dedica a lo que yo hago.
he's a man who devotes himself to what I do.Play Caption
Paul es estadounidense, de los Estados Unidos.
Paul is American, from the United States.
Caption 16, Carlos explica Geografía y gentiliciosPlay Caption
Mi padre es arquitecto
My father is an architect
Caption 25, Leif El Arquitecto Español y su Arte - Part 1Play Caption
In particular, when we refer to essential traits, such as height, weight, and physical appearance.
Es bajo, es gordo,
He's short, he's fat,
Caption 33, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Alguien que es delgado tiene poco peso
Someone who is skinny doesn't weigh muchPlay Caption
Carolina tiene treinta y cinco años pero parece que tiene veinte. Es muy guapa.
Carolina is thirty-five years old but she looks like she is twenty. She's very pretty.
Captions 2-4, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Ellos son muy majos. Mi prima Marta es muy simpática.
They are very nice. My cousin Marta is very nice.
Caption 8, El Aula Azul Mi familiaPlay Caption
Ricardo es muy... es muy tranquilo, ¿viste?
Ricardo is very... he's very calm, you know?
Caption 84, Biografía Natalia Oreiro - Part 10Play Caption
Porque mi mamá es una persona muy difícil. -Eso a mí no me importa.
Because my mom is a very difficult person. -That doesn't matter to me.
Caption 20, Yago 10 Enfrentamientos - Part 4Play Caption
That's it for today. Can you describe someone you know using the verb ser? We invite you to try it out and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions. ¡Hasta la próxima!
Do you ever feel like practicing your Spanish over the phone? In this lesson, we would like to share with you the most important verbs you need to know when making or talking about a phone call. Also, we will show you the words you can use if you are wondering how to answer the phone in Spanish.
This is probably the most important verb when you want to indicate that you are making a call. Let's see some useful sentences.
When you are about to call someone:
Un momento, voy a llamar por teléfono.
One moment, I'm going to call [them].
Caption 6, Ariana Cita médicaPlay Caption
When you want to say that you called someone:
Cuando llamé por teléfono, era para hablar con Lucio.
When I called on the phone, it was to talk to Lucio.
Caption 23, Yago 14 La peruana - Part 5Play Caption
When you want to indicate that someone called someone:
La primera vez que tu papá me llamó, no fue a la casa.
The first time your dad called me, it was not to the house.
Caption 42, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 5 - Part 5Play Caption
Of course, when you call someone, you expect an answer. Let's see this verb in action.
Disculpa, estaba en una reunión y no pude responder tu llamada.
Sorry, I was in a meeting and I couldn't answer your call.
You can also use the verb contestar (to answer) in this situation:
Que pena, discúlpame. Tengo que contestar esta llamada.
I'm sorry, excuse me. I have to answer this call.
Captions 8-9, Confidencial: El rey de la estafa Capítulo 3 - Part 1Play Caption
The example above also provides us with another very useful noun: llamada (a call).
By the way, do you know how to answer the phone in Spanish? In English, we say 'hello' but what's about in Spanish? There are several options:
Literally, bueno means 'fine' or 'well'. However, in this context, you can take bueno as a simple 'hello'. This way of answering the phone is very common in Mexico.
This is the Spanish equivalent of 'hello'.
Literally, this means 'yes'. It is also a very normal way of answering the phone in Spanish.
The translation of this is 'tell me'. A very common way of answering the phone in Spain.
This way of answering the phone is very popular in Colombia. It works as a simple 'hello'.
Some people prefer to answer the phone according to the time of the day so you can say buenos días (good morning), buenas tardes (good afternoon) or buenas noches (good night).
This is the verb you use when you need to get off the phone.
When you want to tell someone that you need to go:
Oye, tengo que colgar porque vamos a comer.
Listen, I have to hang up because we're going to eat.
Captions 56-57, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 8 - Part 4Play Caption
When you want to say that someone hung up on you or someone else:
Una mina llamó por teléfono a tu celular. Elena atendió, ella preguntó por vos y entonces Elena le dijo, "¿Quién habla?" Y la mina colgó.
A girl called your cell phone. Elena answered, she asked for you and then Elena said to her, "Who is it?" And the girl hung up.
Captions 43-45, Yago 11 Prisión - Part 5Play Caption
From the example above, you can also see that the verb atender (to respond) is another verb you can use instead of responder (to answer). Also, keep in mind that when talking about a smartphone you use the word celular throughout Latin America and the word móvil in Spain. If you prefer, you can also use the word teléfono (telephone).
Of course, you talk over the phone so if you want to express that action, you can say it like our friend Silvia from El Aula Azul:
Estoy hablando por teléfono. Yo hablo por teléfono.
I'm talking on the telephone. I talk on the telephone.
Captions 49-50, El Aula Azul Actividades diarias: En casa con SilviaPlay Caption
A phone call is about listening to someone else so this is a very important verb especially when you want to make sure the other person is able to listen to you.
Me puedes escuchar?
Can you hear me?
You can also use the verb oir (to hear) in this context:
¿Qué tal? -Muy bien. Y ahora que te oigo, de maravilla.
How are you? -Very well. And now that I hear you, wonderful.
Captions 33-35, Confidencial: El rey de la estafa Capítulo 3 - Part 13Play Caption
And that's it for today. Are you ready to make a phone call in Spanish? We hope so. And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Do you know how to say "winter" or "summer'" in Spanish? Do you know how to pronounce the seasons in Spanish? Let's review the four seasons of the year in the language of Cervantes.
Let's start this lesson with a quick overview of the Spanish seasons:
invierno | winter
primavera | spring
verano | summer
otoño | autumn or fall
1. How do you say 'season' in Spanish? the answer is 'estación'. Its plural form is 'estaciones' (seasons).
2. All seasons except 'primavera' are masculine nouns. Also, keep in mind that you usually need definite articles next to the seasons. Let's take a look at the singular and plural forms of the Spanish seasons:
el invierno | los inviernos
la primavera | las primaveras
el verano | los veranos
el otoño | los otoños
3. Lots of countries through the Americas don't have four seasons. Instead, they may have rainy and dry seasons. In this case, you may hear the word 'temporada' instead of 'estación':
si ya entramos en la temporada de lluvias,
if we already entered the rainy season,Play Caption
Let's start with the following clip where you can listen to our friend Clara saying the four seasons in Spanish:
Un año tiene cuatro estaciones: primavera, verano, otoño e invierno.
A year has four seasons: spring, summer, fall and winter.
Captions 11-12, Clara explica El tiempo - Part 1Play Caption
Let's practice a little bit more with the following examples for every single season.
En diciembre, empieza el invierno.
In December, the winter starts.
Caption 25, El Aula Azul Estaciones y MesesPlay Caption
en esta época que tenemos... que es primavera,
during this season that we have... which is spring,Play Caption
By the way, we also have a lesson about spring vocabulary that you'll want to read.
Estaba precioso, en otoño con las hojas en el suelo.
It was beautiful in the fall with the leaves on the ground.
Caption 24, El Aula Azul Conversación: Vacaciones recientesPlay Caption
Un día dijimos, es verano, no hacemos nada, vamos, cogemos el coche y nos vamos.
One day we said, "It's summer, we're not doing anything, come on, let's take the car and go."
Captions 26-27, Blanca y Mariona Proyectos para el veranoPlay Caption
Also, make sure to check our lesson about summer vocabulary.
Do you know how to say "yellow" or "purple" in Spanish? Get ready to learn how to write and say the names of the colors in Spanish.
Let's take a look at this list of the primary colors in Spanish.
Even though there are millions of colors out there, most of the time we use only a limited number of colors in our daily life. The following list features the names of the most frequently used colors in Spanish and English.
- amarillo (yellow)
- anaranjado or naranja (orange)
- añil or índigo (indigo)
- azul (blue)
- blanco (white)
- dorado (golden)
- escarlata (scarlet)
- fucsia (fuchsia)
- gris (gray)
- marrón or café (brown)
- morado (purple)
- negro (black)
- plateado (silver)
- rojo (red)
- rosa or rosado (pink)
- violeta (violet)
Now, it's time to learn how to say the colors in Spanish.
Recorta un cuadro de papel amarillo de cinco centímetros
Cut out a five centimeter yellow square from yellow paperPlay Caption
anaranjado or naranja
Adentro, son de color anaranjado.
Inside, they are orange-colored.Play Caption
By the way, do you know how to say "orange" (the fruit) in Spanish? The answer is "naranja"!
Ay, me encanta tu camiseta azul.
Oh, I love your blue shirt.
Caption 3, Español para principiantes Los coloresPlay Caption
Mi perro pequeño es blanco.
My small dog is white.Play Caption
y el negro, donde se tira lo orgánico
and the black one, where the organic [waste] is thrown away
Caption 7, Rosa ReciclarPlay Caption
el verde, donde va el vidrio,
the green one, where the glass goes,
Caption 5, Rosa ReciclarPlay Caption
Mi cocina es de madera de color marrón.
My kitchen is (made) of brown-colored wood.
Caption 23, Ariana Mi CasaPlay Caption
Keep in mind that some people prefer to use to word "café" instead of "marrón" when referring to the color "brown."
Predominan los colores verde, morado,
The colors green, purple, predominate,
Caption 46, Viajando con Fermín Dunas de MarbellaPlay Caption
It is also quite common to use the adjective "púrpura" when talking about the color purple.
el rojo carmesí, que es un rojo frío,
the Crimson Red, which is a cool red,Play Caption
Let's finish this lesson with a little quiz. Can you provide the English word for each one of the seven colors of the rainbow in Spanish? Try it out!
1. rojo = ???
2. naranja or anaranjado = ???
3. amarillo = ???
4. verde = ???
5. azul = ???
6. añil = ???
7. violeta = ???
Did you get them all? If you didn't, you can always go back and check out the list we provided at the beginning of this lesson with the Spanish colors in alphabetical order.
That's it for today. We hope you enjoyed this lesson and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
The coronavirus is one of the greatest challenges humankind has ever faced. Because of that, we are being bombarded with words such as "virus," "disease," "quarantine," and "pandemic." But, do you know how to say all those words in Spanish? In this lesson, we will review some of the most important nouns associated with the current coronavirus. But first, let's take a closer look at the word coronavirus in Spanish.
In Spanish, the word coronavirus is a masculine noun made of two words: corona (crown) and virus (virus). However, keep in mind that coronavirus is just one word so there's no need for spaces or hyphens between the words that make up this noun.
Apart from that, it is worth mentioning that the word coronavirus in Spanish is the same in both the singular and the plural. Let's take a look:
El coronavirus es un virus contagioso
Coronavirus is a contagious virus
Los coronavirus son virus contagiosos
Coronaviruses are contagious viruses
From the example above, you can also see that the word virus in Spanish is the same in the singular and plural. In fact, this word belongs to a group of nouns ending in 'S' or 'X' that are the same in the singular and plural in Spanish.
With that being said, let's take a look at some of the words that you need to keep in mind in the context of the coronavirus.
For talking about coronavirus, here are some of the most common nouns. Let's take a look.
Vivimos en tiempos de crisis.
We live in times of crisis.
Caption 3, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 2 - Part 1Play Caption
Mirá, ni siquiera uso el alcohol como desinfectante.
Look, I don't even use alcohol as a disinfectant.
Caption 81, Muñeca Brava 18 - La Apuesta - Part 11Play Caption
In this caption, we also highlighted another very used word nowadays: alcohol (alcohol).
Enfermedad (illness, disease)
por una enfermedad o por un trastorno.
due to an illness or due to an imbalance.
Caption 50, Raquel Visitar al MédicoPlay Caption
se controla que no tienen ninguna enfermedad.
they check [to make sure] that they don't have any disease.
Caption 60, Rosa Laguna Fuente de PiedraPlay Caption
aquí está nuestro mejor amigo: el jabón.
here's our best friend: soap.
Caption 18, Ana Carolina Artículos de aseo personalPlay Caption
Another term commonly used when talking about the masks people use to protect their mouths and noses is "tapaboca" or "tapabocas".
Organización Mundial de la Salud (OMS)
This is the Spanish name for the World Health Organization (WHO)
On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization officially declared the coronavirus a pandemic. The Spanish term for pandemic is pandemia. Keep in mind that there is a difference between epidemia (epidemic) and pandemia (pandemic). While the former relates to the spread of a disease in a country, the latter refers to the spread of a disease throughout the world.
el mundo se enfrenta ahora a una pandemia sin precedentes.
the world is now facing an unprecedented pandemic.
Caption 12, El Coronavirus Introducción y vocabularioPlay Caption
The word "prueba" is probably the best one for the test that people take in order to find out if they have coronavirus. However, some people prefer to use similar terms such as "test" or "muestra".
According to several experts, even in the most optimistic of scenarios, many economies will be heading to a recession after the coronavirus crisis is over.
que fue cuando en España entró la recesión en el sector de la construcción
which was when in Spain the recession in the construction sector beganPlay Caption
Teletrabajo (remote working)
"El coronavirus es un virus contagioso".
"The coronavirus is a contagious virus."
Caption 27, El Coronavirus Introducción y vocabularioPlay Caption
There are many more words that are used in the context of the coronavirus disease. However, if you want to follow the news in Spanish, there is a good chance of coming across some of the terms we just reviewed. Please, take the necessary protection during this difficult time and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
How do you say "math" in Spanish? This is a question even native speakers ask themselves. The reason is that there are two terms that people use to say "mathematics" in Spanish. Let's find out which term you should use and explore some of the most basic math terms in Spanish.
Matemática and its plural form matemáticas are the two valid terms you can use when talking about the noun that refers to "the science of numbers, forms, amounts, and their relationships." Let's see a couple of examples:
Vos te puedes equivocar en la matemática también.
You can can make mistakes in math too.
Caption 19, Yago 11 Prisión - Part 5Play Caption
Esta mañana he resuelto el problema de matemáticas.
This morning I solved the math problem.
Caption 55, Lecciones con Carolina Participios irregularesPlay Caption
yo tenía que responder exámenes de matemáticas.
I had to answer math tests.
Caption 34, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 7 - Part 2Play Caption
There are a couple of things worth mentioning. First of all, keep in mind that the plural form matemáticas tends to be used more frequently than the singular form. Second of all, you don't need to use capital letters for any of these two terms. Now, let's review some useful vocabulary related to math in Spanish.
Let's see how to say the most basic math operations in Spanish:
Addition (Adición or suma)
Substraction (Sustracción or resta)
And how about the verbs that you use to indicate those basic operations? Let's listen to our friend Ester from El Aula Azul:
Tienes números, tienes que sumar, tienes que restar, multiplicar, dividir
You have numbers, you have to add, you have to subtract, to multiply, to divide
Captions 4-5, El Aula Azul Piensa rápido - Part 2Play Caption
Now, let's see how to express these operations with some examples:
1 +1 = one plus one (uno más uno)
2 - 1 = two minus one (dos menos uno)
2 x 2 = two times two (dos por dos)
4 ÷ 2 = Four divided by two (cuatro dividido dos)
There are many math terms we use every day even when we are not talking about mathematics. Let's look at some of these terms:
Mi escultura es la solución a una ecuación
My sculpture is the solution to an equation
Caption 25, San Sebastián Peine del vientoPlay Caption
Y ¿cuál es la temperatura promedio en tu pueblo?
And what's the average temperature in your town?
Caption 39, Cleer Entrevista a LilaPlay Caption
Producimos un doce coma seis por ciento más de residuos que la media Europea
We produce twelve-point-six percent more waste than the average of Europe
Caption 29, 3R Campaña de reciclaje - Part 1Play Caption
Ya ven uno y uno es igual a tres
Now you see one and one equals three
Caption 10, Jeremías Uno y uno igual a tresPlay Caption
Otra cosa im'... importante que tienes que calcular además de todo ese movimiento,
Another im'... important thing that you have to calculate in addition to all that movement,
Captions 64-65, El teatro. Conversación con un doble de acción.Play Caption
Los números cardinales pueden ser simples o compuestos.
Cardinal numbers can be simple or compound.
Caption 11, Carlos explica Los Números: Números CardinalesPlay Caption
How many question words in Spanish are you familiar with? Do you know how to write a question in Spanish? Asking questions is one of the most important skills you need to master in the language you are learning. In this lesson, we will learn the most important interrogative words in Spanish. However, before we explore those words, let's discuss a couple of things about asking questions in Spanish.
'Pregunta' is how you say the word 'question' in Spanish. 'Pregunta' is a feminine noun and its plural form is 'preguntas'. Let's practice the pronunciation of this term:
Kevin, la pregunta es:
Kevin, the question is:
Caption 13, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 1 - Part 8Play Caption
Los voy a dejar con cuatro preguntas.
I am going to leave you with four questions.Play Caption
Do you know how to write a question in Spanish? Let's take a look at the basic structure of a question in Spanish.
To begin with, you need to stick to the rules of Spanish punctuation. Because of that, when you write a question in Spanish you need to remember that question marks are always double-sided. In other words, you need to start the question with an opening question mark (¿) and end it with a closing one (?):
¿Cómo es Japón? ¿Qué te gusta de Japón?
What's Japan like? What do you like about Japan?
Captions 69-70, Clase Aula Azul Pedir deseos - Part 1Play Caption
Let's start with simple questions. Believe it or not, for these kinds of questions your intonation is what matters the most. You basically make Yes/No questions by transforming a statement into a question. The Spanish question structure for these kinds of questions is the following:
¿ + (subject) + conjugated verb + (additional information) + ?
Please note that the terms in parenthesis are optional. Let's see a couple of examples:
A Pedro le gusta comer pizza (Pedro likes to eat pizza)
¿A Pedro le gusta comer pizza? (Does Pedro like to eat pizza?)
For negative questions, you just need to place a "no" before the conjugated verb.
No quieres estudiar (You don't want to study)
¿No quieres estudiar? (Don't you want to study?)
Go ahead and play the following clips so you can hear the intonation of the following Yes/No questions. Notice how the pitch of the speaker's voice gets higher at the end of the sentence when asking questions in Spanish:
Mmm... ¿Quieres ir al cine? -Sí, ¡buena idea!
Mmm... Do you want to go to the movies? -Yes, good idea!
Captions 45-46, Conversaciones en el parque Cap. 5: Me gusta mucho este parque.Play Caption
¿Necesitas ayuda? -Mmm... Sí.
Do you need help? -Mmm... Yes.
Captions 9-10, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
¿No conoces Manhattan?
You don't know Manhattan?
Caption 37, Yago 2 El puma - Part 2Play Caption
As you can see, it is very common to start Yes/No questions with a conjugated verb.
The following is the Spanish question structure you need to keep mind when your question is aimed at getting some sort of information:
¿ + (preposition) + question word + conjugated verb + (additional information) + ?
Please note that the terms in parenthesis are optional. Let's see a couple of examples:
¡Oh! ¿Dónde está el cajero automático?
Oh! Where's the ATM?
Caption 36, Natalia de Ecuador Palabras de uso básicoPlay Caption
In the example above, we have the following structure:
¿ + question word (dónde) + conjugated verb (está) + additional information (el cajero automático) + ?
Let's listen to another clip:
¿Desde cuándo tienes este piso?
Since when have you had this apartment?
Caption 35, 75 minutos Gangas para ricos - Part 13Play Caption
In this last example, the Spanish question structure is the following:
¿ + preposition (desde) + question word (cuándo) + conjugated verb (tienes) + additional information (este piso) + ?
Now that we have seen the structure of a question, let's take a look at some Spanish question words in sentences.
It's time to review the most important interrogative words in Spanish. If you are thinking about WH questions, you are right. Let's find out what the Spanish question words are for 'what', 'which', 'when', 'where', 'who', 'why' and 'how'.
For your reference, here's a list of the top question words in Spanish.
What / Which (Qué / Cuál)
Why (Por qué)
Now, let's see each one of these question words in action with a list of some of the most basic Spanish questions you can ask.
And now, let's dive into our list.
What / Which (Qué / Cuál)
Diremos, "¿Qué hora es?"
We'll say, "What time is it?"
Caption 49, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
O, ¿A qué te dedicas?
Or, What do you do? [with "tú"].
Caption 17, Karla e Isabel Tú y UstedPlay Caption
Oye, y ¿en qué trabajas?
Hey, and what do you do [for a living]?
Caption 82, Ricardo La compañera de casa - Part 1Play Caption
Por supuesto; ¿cuál es su dirección de correo?
Of course; what is your e-mail address?
Caption 69, Negocios Empezar en un nuevo trabajo - Part 2Play Caption
¿Recuerdas cuál era la copa para servir vino?
Do you remember which cup was the one for serving wine?
Caption 36, Ana Carolina El comedorPlay Caption
¿Y cuándo hizo el "check-in"?
And when did he check-in?Play Caption
¿Cuándo terminas de estudiar?
When do you finish studying?Play Caption
¿De dónde eres?
Where are you from?
Caption 36, Curso de español ¿De dónde eres?Play Caption
Y ¿en dónde vives?
And where do you live?
Caption 8, Cleer Entrevista a LilaPlay Caption
Let's see a couple of clips from Raquel to see the kind of questions you ask when you want to find out where something is located:
¿Me podrías decir dónde está el baño?
Could you tell me where the bathroom is?Play Caption
¿Sabes dónde hay alguna farmacia?
Do you know where there's a pharmacy?
Caption 24, Raquel Expresiones para un festival de música.Play Caption
We use 'who' when we want to find out someone's identity. Let's see a couple of examples:
Mi jugador favorito juega en el Real Madrid. ¿Quién es?
My favorite player plays for Real Madrid. Who is it?
Captions 19-20, El Aula Azul Las Profesiones - Part 1Play Caption
¿Usted quién es? Roberto. Un amigo.
Who are you? Roberto. A friend.
Captions 24-25, Yago 9 Recuperación - Part 2Play Caption
Why (Por qué)
¿Por qué dices eso? -No...
Why are you saying that? -No...
Caption 14, Cortometraje Beta - Part 3Play Caption
Para saludar, podemos decir: "Hola. ¿Cómo estás? ¿Todo bien?"
To greet (people), we can say: "Hello. How are you? (Is) everything good?"
Caption 7, Español en las calles Varias expresionesPlay Caption
Keep in mind that the word 'cómo' is not always translated as the English word 'how'. In fact, one of the most basic Spanish questions you can ask is a good example of that:
Buenos días, ¿cómo te llamas?
Good morning, what's your name?
Caption 8, La rutina diaria La mañanaPlay Caption
When we want to find out someone's age or the price of an object, we combine 'how' with other words such as 'old' or 'much'. When we want to get that kind of information, we use other interrogative words in Spanish. Let's take a look:
Ah, lindo. ¿Cuánto cuesta?
Oh, nice. How much does it cost?
Captions 33-34, Natalia de Ecuador Palabras de uso básicoPlay Caption
¿Cuántos años tienes?
How old are you?
Caption 6, Cleer Entrevista a LilaPlay Caption
Ah, vale. ¿Cuántos hijos tienes?
Oh, OK. How many sons do you have?
Caption 39, Clase Aula Azul El verbo parecer - Part 7Play Caption
¿Y cuántas botellas de agua hay aquí?
And how many bottles of water are there here?Play Caption
And that's it for now. We hope you use this review of the most important Spanish question words as the perfect excuse to start asking questions in Spanish. Are you ready? We encourage you to do that and don't forget to send us your questions and comments.
When it comes to bringing good vibes and positive energy, there's nothing better than a nice compliment. In fact, we use compliments when we want to express respect, approval, or admiration for someone. With that being said, let's learn some easy ways to express compliments in Spanish.
First things first. There are various terms you can use for the word compliment in Spanish. The following are your options:
Keep in mind, however, that the word piropo is mostly used to indicate a short sentence that is concerned with the beauty of a woman:
En cambio vos no cambiaste nada; estás más hermosa que nunca.
On the other hand you haven't changed a bit; you're more beautiful than ever.
Caption 56, Yago 11 Prisión - Part 2Play Caption
Very often, compliments are preceded by some form of congratulations. Let's see that in action:
Los felicito, muchachos; eso está muy bien.
I congratulate you, kids; that's great.
Caption 36, Tu Voz Estéreo Feliz Navidad - Part 1Play Caption
Enhorabuena, Amaya... -Muchas gracias. -...por tu primera venta.
Congratulations, Amaya... -Thanks a lot. -...on your first sale.
Caption 77, Santuario para burros Tienda solidariaPlay Caption
Do you know how to say 'good job' in Spanish? Let's see how to express one of the most common compliments:
Te felicito; buen trabajo, ¿eh?
I congratulate you; good job, huh?
Caption 49, Muñeca Brava 47 Esperanzas - Part 8Play Caption
Debo admitir que hiciste un excelente trabajo, realmente.
I must admit that you did an excellent job, really.
Caption 4, Muñeca Brava 33 El partido - Part 11Play Caption
There are many ways to compliment a woman on her looks. Let's see some examples of compliments for women in Spanish:
Hello, beautiful.Play Caption
Pasa. -Qué bonita que estás, ¿eh?
Come in. -How pretty you look, huh?
Caption 1, Yago 12 Fianza - Part 9Play Caption
yo jamás dejaría plantada a una mujer tan guapa como esta.
I would never stand up a woman as beautiful as this one.Play Caption
The verb gustar (to like) is very useful when it comes to express compliments. Just like English, what you want to say is 'I like this of you':
Me gusta como sos. Me gusta tu pelo.
I like how you are. I like your hair.
Captions 80-81, Muñeca Brava 7 El poema - Part 1Play Caption
You can also use similar verbs to express compliments in Spanish:
Es que me encanta cómo hablas.
It's just that I love the way you speak.Play Caption
¡Hey! Adoro tu caminar
Hey! I adore your walking
Caption 34, Huecco Dame VidaPlay Caption
There are lots of compliments you can use when you want to encourage someone. Teachers, for example, use these kinds of compliments often with their students:
Perfecto, chicos. Muy bien.
Perfect, guys. Very good.
Caption 57, Clase Aula Azul El verbo parecer - Part 7Play Caption
A very common way of expressing compliments in Spanish consists of using the word qué (what) followed by a positive word (most of the time an adjective):
¡Qué buen observador eres!
What a good observer you are!
Caption 30, Guillermina y Candelario El Mar enamoradoPlay Caption
¡Pero qué lindo dibujito! ¡Mateo, qué bien está dibujado, che!
But what a nice little drawing! Mateo, how well it's drawn, wow!
Captions 41-42, Yago 4 El secreto - Part 4Play Caption
Quiero que todo el mundo sea feliz y contento. ¡Muy bien! Qué bonito, ¿mmm?
I want everyone to be happy and content. Very good! How nice, hmm?
Captions 34-35, Clase Aula Azul Pedir deseos - Part 5Play Caption
Sometimes, we can express compliments or flatter someone by saying good things about something that is connected to that person:
Ay, me encanta tu camiseta azul. Gracias.
Oh, I love your blue shirt. Thank you.
Captions 3-4, Español para principiantes Los coloresPlay Caption
Si, si lo criaste vos, tiene que ser un buen pibe.
If, if you raised him, he must be a good kid.
Caption 33, Yago 6 Mentiras - Part 8Play Caption
And that's it for today. Try practicing some of these compliments in Spanish and don't forget to send us your questions and comments.
¡Hasta la próxima!
Let's enhance our vocabulary today! As you know, nouns in Spanish are defined by number and gender. However, there are some nouns that can be both masculine and feminine. Moreover, depending on the gender they have, these nouns change their meanings completely. With that being said, let's take a look at some Spanish words that change meaning with gender.
Feminine: la capital (a capital city)
Está ubicada a ciento diez kilómetros de Quito, la capital del Ecuador.
It is located one hundred and ten kilometers from Quito, the capital of Ecuador.
Caption 6, Otavalo El mercado de artesanías de OtavaloPlay Caption
Masculine: el capital (capital: money)
No buscar la acumulación de capital sino buscar la satisfacción de necesidades sociales.
It's not seeking the accumulation of capital, but seeking the satisfaction of social necessities.
Captions 74-75, De consumidor a persona Short Film - Part 7Play Caption
Feminine: la cólera (anger, rage)
Masculine: el cólera (cholera - the illness)
Feminine: la coma (a comma - punctuation)
Masculine: el coma (a coma - medicine)
Feminine: la cometa (a kite)
Pero la cometa estaba muy alta para cogerla.
But the kite was too high to grab.
Caption 22, Guillermina y Candelario El Gran DescubrimientoPlay Caption
Masculine: el cometa (a comet - astronomy)
Feminine: la corte (a court of law OR the royal court of a king)
Creo que voy a apelar esta decisión a la Corte Suprema.
I think I'm going to appeal this decision to the Supreme Court.Play Caption
que le habían sido cedidos para recreo de la corte.
that had been handed over to him for the court's recreation.
Caption 59, Marisa en Madrid Parque de El RetiroPlay Caption
Masculine: el corte (a cut - injury OR the cut of hair or a suit)
Y ahora voy a hacer el corte aquí.
And now I am going to make the cut here.
Caption 42, Instrumentos musicales OcarinasPlay Caption
Feminine: la cura (the cure)
Tu madre no tiene cura.
Your mom has no cure.
Caption 45, Muñeca Brava 44 El encuentro - Part 5Play Caption
Masculine: el cura (a priest)
Aquí no habrá noche de bodas mientras no vayan con un cura.
Here, there will be no wedding night until you go to a priest.
Caption 23, El Ausente Acto 4 - Part 3Play Caption
Feminine: la final (the sports final, the playoffs)
Jueguen como si fuera la final.
Play as if it were the finals.Play Caption
Masculine: el final (the end)
Al final le he pedido disculpas y todo.
In the end, I apologized to him and everything.
Caption 55, Cortometraje FlechazosPlay Caption
Feminine: la frente (the forehead)
"María le tocó la frente a su hijo para ver si tenía fiebre".
"Maria touched her son's forehead to see if he had a fever."
Caption 17, Carlos explica Vocabulario: El verbo “tocar”Play Caption
Masculine: el frente (the front - military)
Los soldados están en el frente de batalla.
The soldiers are on the battle front.
Feminine: la guía (a guide book OR a female guide OR a telephone book OR guidance)
todo bajo la guía de un profesor de educación física.
all with the guidance of a P.E. teacher.
Caption 7, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 1 - Part 6Play Caption
¡Pippo, traé una guía!
Pippo, bring me a phone directory.
Caption 55, Yago 5 La ciudad - Part 3Play Caption
Masculine: el guía (a male guide)
Mi nombre es Mauricio y soy un guía turístico.
My name is Mauricio and I'm a tour guide.
Caption 27, Pipo Un paseo por la playa de AtacamesPlay Caption
Feminine: la orden (a command OR a restaurant order)
Normalmente, cuando estás haciendo una orden,
Usually, when you're placing an order,
Caption 28, Natalia de Ecuador Ordenar en un restaurantePlay Caption
Masculine: el orden (order)
Listo, señor Rolleri; todo en orden.
Done, Mister Rolleri; everything's in order.Play Caption
That's if for today. Do you know more Spanish words that change meaning with gender? We challenge you to find more and don't forget to send us your questions and comments.
Let's talk about adverbs! In this lesson, we have a big match: afuera vs. fuera. Do you know the meaning of these two words? Let's explore how to use and pronounce these frequently used Spanish adverbs.
As an adverb, afuera refers to a place that is outside of where you are:
Todo lo malo me pasa dentro de esta casa, no afuera.
All the bad things happen to me inside this house, not outside.
Caption 20, Muñeca Brava 18 - La Apuesta - Part 4Play Caption
Similarly, the adverb fuera is used to talk about the exterior part of something:
puedes ir a tomar café a una cafetería fuera de la escuela,
you can go to drink coffee at a cafe outside of the school,Play Caption
If you want to indicate that someone is going outside, toward the exterior, or even abroad (with verbs of movement), you can use either afuera or fuera. Both forms are correct and are used indistinctly in both Spain and Latin America. Let's see some sentences:
Vení, vamos afuera.
Come, let's go outside.
Caption 28, Yago 9 Recuperación - Part 2Play Caption
Cuando los cuatro compañeros nos fuimos a estudiar fuera,
When we four friends went to study abroad,Play Caption
When you want to indicate that someone or something is outside, or when you want to make a reference to the outside world, you use fuera in both Spain and Latin America. However, it is also very common to use afuera throughout the Americas. Let's hear the pronunciation of these two words one more time:
¡Qué lindo que está afuera! ¿No? El clima está divino.
How nice it is outside! No? The weather is divine.
Caption 15, Muñeca Brava 1 Piloto - Part 4Play Caption
me doy una buena ducha aquí fuera,
I take a good shower here outside,
Caption 31, Amaya "Mi camper van"Play Caption
Both afuera and fuera can be used as interjections. Generally speaking, you use these interjections when you ask someone to leave a place.
¡Suficiente, fuera de mi casa!
Enough, out of my house!
Caption 61, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 4 - Part 6Play Caption
There are several useful idiomatic expressions with the word fuera. Let's see some of them:
Este hombre vive fuera de la realidad, Señoría.
This man lives outside of reality, Your Honor.Play Caption
Su ropa está fuera de moda.
His clothes are out of fashion.Play Caption
No hay nada fuera de lo normal,
There isn't anything out of the ordinary,
Caption 38, Negocios Empezar en un nuevo trabajo - Part 1Play Caption
That's it for today. We hope this review helps you to use correctly the adverbs fuera and afuera. As you could see throughout this lesson, more than talking about afuera vs fuera, we should really treat this subject as afuera = fuera! Keep that in mind and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Let's talk about family! Do you know how to say words like "father" or "cousin" in Spanish? Today, we will learn how to say the names of the most important family members in Spanish. In particular, we will see how to write and pronounce those names. Let's take a look.
Familia is the Spanish word for family. It is important to say that this is a feminine collective noun. Collective nouns are words that we use for particular groups. However, these nouns are treated as singular words. Let's see how this works:
Mi familia es pequeña y cálida. Considerando que "familia" es un sustantivo colectivo femenino, conjugamos el verbo en tercera persona del singular y utilizamos adjetivos femeninos, "pequeña" y "cálida", para elaborar la concordancia de manera correcta.
My family is small and warm. Considering that "familia" is a feminine collective noun, we conjugate the verb in third person singular and use feminine adjectives, "pequeña" [small] and "cálida" [warm], to create agreement in the correct way.
Captions 16-20, Carlos explica Sustantivos colectivosPlay Caption
The following are the names of the most important family member in Spanish.
Comes bastante verdura, tu madre que te quiere.
Eat enough vegetables, your mother who loves you.Play Caption
Very often, however, people refer to their mothers using the following terms:
Mamá, quería preguntarte algo.
Mom, I wanted to ask you something.
Caption 2, Yago 10 Enfrentamientos - Part 7Play Caption
¿Haciendo la tarea con mami? -Sí.
Doing your homework with Mommy? -Yes.
Caption 24, Yago 11 Prisión - Part 5Play Caption
"A mi padre siempre le toca trabajar mucho todos los viernes".
"My father always has to work a lot every Friday."
Caption 53, Carlos explica Vocabulario: El verbo “tocar”Play Caption
However, just like for the word "mother", there are some other terms people use when talking with or about their fathers:
Fue cuando me di cuenta no tenía ni idea de lo que hacía mi papá.
It was then that I realized I had no idea what my dad did.
Caption 30, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 3 - Part 3Play Caption
Papi, cualquier hora es buena.
Daddy, any hour is good.
Caption 5, X6 1 - La banda - Part 3Play Caption
Quiero presentarles a mi hijo; Kevin, él es Felipe,
I want to introduce you to my son; Kevin, this is Felipe,
Caption 16, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 3 - Part 6Play Caption
Y muy feliz de tener a mi lado a mi hija,
And very happy to have my daughter by my side,
Caption 38, Yolimar Gimón sobre el concurso Mrs. VenezuelaPlay Caption
Después aquí tengo a mi hermano, José.
Then here I have my brother, Jose.
Caption 11, Curso de español Vamos a hablar de la familiaPlay Caption
pero que estaba alejando a mi hermana de nosotros.
but which was taking my sister away from us.
Caption 21, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 4 - Part 2Play Caption
Grandpa, Grandpa!Play Caption
Abuela, podemos hablar dos minutos por favor.
Grandmother, can we talk for two minutes, please.
Caption 4, Muñeca Brava 18 - La Apuesta - Part 6Play Caption
Mi nieto no existe.
My grandson does not exist.
Caption 53, Muñeca Brava 33 El partido - Part 7Play Caption
La nieta de María.
Caption 30, Zoraida en Coro El pintor YepezPlay Caption
Y su tío Aldo cree que está muerto, su tío Lucio confía en que esté vivo.
And his Uncle Aldo believes that he's dead, his Uncle Lucio has faith that he's alive.
Caption 22, Yago 8 Descubrimiento - Part 3Play Caption
Esa es mi tía Silvia.
That is my Aunt Silvia.
Caption 24, Español para principiantes DemostrativosPlay Caption
¿Hace cuánto tiempo que dejó de ver a su sobrino?
How long ago did you stop seeing your nephew?
Caption 69, Yago 8 Descubrimiento - Part 1Play Caption
Sobrina. Muy bien.
Niece. Very good.
Caption 43, Curso de español Vamos a hablar de la familiaPlay Caption
Sí, me gusta mucho mi primo Pedro.
Yes, I like my cousin Pedro very much.
Caption 40, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Esta mañana mi prima se ha roto la pierna jugando al fútbol.
This morning my cousin has broken her leg playing soccer.Play Caption
Finally, keep in mind that when using the plural forms of these nouns, you should use the male form when the group is made of both male and female members:
Two cousins (both male): Dos primos
Two cousins (both female): Dos primas
Two cousing (one male and one female): Dos primos
That's it for today. We invite you to take a piece of paper and design your family tree with the names of the family members in Spanish. And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Let's talk about the time! Are you ready to learn how to tell time in Spanish?
Well, first, for the purposes of this lesson, we invite you to review the following components:
- The verb ser (to be)
- The definite articles for feminine nouns
- The numbers from one to fifty-nine
In addition to these, we will examine some useful expressions and vocabulary that will help you to learn how to tell time in Spanish. Let's get started.
There are two common ways to ask for the time in Spanish. Let's take a look:
¿Cómo preguntamos la hora? Excelente pregunta. Diremos, "¿Qué hora es?"
How do we ask what time it is? Excellent question. We'll say, "What time is it?"
Captions 47-49, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
¿Me podría decir qué horas son?
Could you tell me what time it is?Play Caption
As you can see, the difference between these two questions is that the first is singular while the second is plural. It is important to note that the singular form (¿Qué hora es?) is preferred, and we thus encourage you to choose it when asking for the time in Spanish.
Now that you know how to say "What time is it?" it is time (no pun intended!) to learn how to tell time in Spanish! The formula is quite simple:
To be + article + hour + additional information
Let's focus on each of these variables.
Just as we say "It's one o'clock" or "It is seven forty-three" in English, we must also use the verb ser (to be) when telling time in Spanish. Interestingly, although the third person singular form es would be the Spanish equivalent of "it's" or "it is," due to the fact that we are referring to the plural noun horas (hours), Spanish almost always utilizes the plural form of ser, or son. As you see below, the only exception to this rule is when talking about one o'clock, in which case the singular form es is indeed applied.
Son las doce. Es la una. Son las dos.
It's twelve o'clock. It's one o'clock. It's two o'clock.
Captions 16-18, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
Similarly, since horas is feminine and plural, the feminine plural definite article las must accompany it. Once again, one o'clock is the only exception with which we use the singular feminine definite article la. Looking once more at the previous example, let's focus on these definite articles:
Son las doce. Es la una. Son las dos.
It's twelve o'clock. It's one o'clock. It's two o'clock.
Captions 16-18, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
We've arrived at the point in our Spanish time-telling formula where "it's time" to insert a number! In case you haven't learned the numbers in Spanish or need some brushing up on them, we would like to refer you to this very useful, past Yabla lesson (noting again that for telling time in Spanish, it would only be necessary to know the numbers up through fifty-nine).
Applying the principles we've just spoken about, let's take a look at some very straightforward examples of telling time in Spanish, prior to getting to that "additional information" we spoke about:
Son las diez.
It's ten o'clock.
Es la una.
It's one o'clock.
Son las veinte.
It's eight p.m.
Wait... what?! Doesn't Son las veinte mean "It's twenty o'clock?" Some Spanish-speaking countries employ military time in which the numbers from one to twelve are utilized for the hours from one a.m. to twelve p.m., and the numbers thirteen through twenty-four are used to refer to the hours from one p.m. to twelve a.m. So, you might hear, “Son las trece” (literally "It’s thirteen") in lieu of “Es la una” to say that it’s one p.m., whereas “Son las veinte” (It’s twenty) would mean, “It’s eight p.m.”
When not speaking in military time, expressions like de la mañana (in the morning), de la tarde (in the afternoon/evening), or de la noche (at night) are sometimes included to help one distinguish the exact time. Alternatively, “a.m.” and “p.m.” can be used just like in English. Let's look at some examples:
Son las diez de la manana.
It's ten in the morning.
Son las diez de la noche.
It's ten at night.
Son las cinco a.m.
It's five a.m.
Son las cinco p.m.
It's five p.m.
Up until now, all of the times we have spoken about have been very simple and straightforward, including only the hours without any minutes. So, how do we talk about more complex times in Spanish?
One of the simplest ways to express the minutes after an hour in Spanish is by adding the word y (and). Then, just like in English, we would insert the particular number of minutes, as follows:
Son las once y cinco.
It's five after eleven (or It's eleven o-five).
Son las cinco y cincuenta y siete.
It's five fifty-seven.
Sometimes, the y before the minutes is omitted. So, you might hear simply Son las cinco cincuenta y siete. In yet another alternative construction, con (with) might take the place of y to get: Son las siete con cincuenta y siete.
In addition to saying the specific minutes, there are a few, extremely useful Spanish expressions that one should memorize in order to effectively talk about time in Spanish, which are as follows: y cuarto ("quarter past/after" or "fifteen"), y media ("half past" or "thirty"), menos cuarto ("quarter to/till" or "forty-five") and para ("to/till"). Let's take a look at some examples:
¿Sabe qué hora es? Ehm... Son las nueve menos cuarto.
Do you know what time is it? Um... It's quarter to nine.
Captions 9-10, Español para principiantes Saludos y encuentrosPlay Caption
Although the literal translation for Son las nueve menos cuarto would be "It's nine minus fifteen," this would typically be expressed in English with either "It's quarter to nine" or "It's eight forty-five." That said, just as there are different ways of describing the same time in English, the same holds true in Spanish. Alternatives include: Son las ocho y cuarenta y cinco (literally "it's eight forty-five") and falta un cuarto para las nueve (another manner of saying "it's quarter to nine"). Let's look at these additional possibilities in action in the following Yabla clip:
Nueve cuarenta y cinco. Otra manera de decir esta hora sería: Cuarto para las diez.
Nine forty-five. Another way to say this time would be: Quarter to ten.
Captions 32-34, Aprendiendo con Karen El tiempoPlay Caption
Let's take a look at a couple of additional examples of the aforementioned phrases:
Y practico Tae Bo todas las tardes, de siete y media a ocho y media
And I do Tae Bo every afternoon from seven thirty to eight thirty
Caption 21, Patricia Marti Diversión y EjercicioPlay Caption
Seis quince. Otra manera de decir esta hora sería: Seis y cuarto.
Six fifteen. Another way of saying this time would be: Quarter after six.
Captions 26-28, Aprendiendo con Karen El tiempoPlay Caption
You will notice that in the second example, seis quince is another, more literal way to say "quarter after six," and the literal equivalent of the English "six fifteen." And, as we spoke about earlier, although one could say seis y quince, the y has been omitted.
As you can see, there are numerous ways of talking about time in Spanish, some of which might be preferred in specific regions or with specific individuals. We invite you to review these concepts and terminology in order to find your favorite way of telling time in Spanish.
We hope you've enjoyed this lesson, see you next "time"! And please don't forget to leave us your comments and suggestions.
Generally speaking, one-syllable words in Spanish don't need a graphic accent (tilde) even if they are tonic (words that are stressed when pronounced). Some examples of tonic one-syllable words include the following nouns:
Besides nouns, there are several one-syllable words that come from the conjugations of some verbs. Just as the nouns we mentioned before, these words don't need a graphic accent either. Let's see some examples:
Él los vio a los ladrones. ¿Usted vio a los ladrones?
He saw the thieves. Did you see the thieves?
Captions 16-17, Yago 6 Mentiras - Part 7Play Caption
No sabemos si fue el lunes o si fue el martes.
We don't know if it was on Monday or it was on Tuesday.
Caption 5, El Aula Azul Dos historiasPlay Caption
With that being said, there are some important exceptions of one-syllable words in Spanish that do need a graphic accent. This kind of accent is called in Spanish tilde diacrítica and we use it to avoid confusion between one-syllable words that have the same spelling but different meanings. Let's take a look.
Los niños y los adultos se ríen mucho con él.
Kids and adults laugh a lot with him.
Caption 54, El Aula Azul Las Profesiones - Part 2Play Caption
tenemos el brazo.
we have the arm.
Caption 9, Marta de Madrid El cuerpo - El troncoPlay Caption
Except when it acts as a conjunction of contrast (just like the word pero (but)), the one-syllable word más always has a graphic accent.
empecé más o menos a los diecisiete años a tocar instrumentos y a cantar a un nivel más avanzado.
I started to play instruments at about seventeen years old and to sing at a more advanced level.
Captions 18-19, Cleer Entrevista con JackyPlay Caption
When it works as a personal pronoun, you need to put the graphic accent.
Pueden confiar en mí.
You can trust me.
Caption 11, Guillermina y Candelario Mi Primer TesoroPlay Caption
However, when it works as a possessive adjective, it doesn't need a graphic accent.
En mi barrio hay una farmacia.
In my neighborhood there is a pharmacy.
Caption 4, El Aula Azul Mi BarrioPlay Caption
Form of the verbs ser (to be) and saber (to know)
Que sí, mamá, que ya sé que siempre se olvida de mi cumpleaños,
Yes, Mom, I know that he always forgets my birthday,
Caption 1, Cortometraje Beta - Part 1Play Caption
Personal pronoun and reflexive
El martes se me perdieron las llaves de casa,
On Tuesday, my house keys got lost,Play Caption
Ella no quería acostarse con Ivo Di Carlo,
She didn't want to sleep with Ivo Di Carlo,
Caption 61, Muñeca Brava 48 - Soluciones - Part 1Play Caption
Reflexive pronoun and adverb of affirmation
Sí, vine porque Aldo me había hecho una propuesta
Yes, I came because Aldo had made a suggestion
Caption 3, Yago 14 La peruana - Part 9Play Caption
Si me dejan en la calle me arreglo
If they leave me on the street I manage
Caption 2, Jorge Celedón, Vicentico Si Me DejanPlay Caption
¿Quién no se despierta con una taza de café o de un buen té?
Who doesn't wake up with a cup of coffee or good tea?
Caption 39, Aprendiendo con Karen Utensilios de cocinaPlay Caption
Personal pronoun and reflexive
La que yo guardo donde te escribí, que te sueño y que te quiero tanto
The one I keep where I wrote to you, that I dream of you and that I love you so much
Caption 9, Carlos Vives, Shakira La BicicletaPlay Caption
Rachel, ¿qué quieres tú?
Rachel, what do you want?
Caption 2, Clase Aula Azul Pedir deseos - Part 3Play Caption
para tu salud, tan importante para tu estilo de vida
for your health, as important for your lifestyle
Caption 52, Natalia de Ecuador Alimentos para el desayunoPlay Caption
That's it for today. We encourage you to learn all these one-syllable words as they are used quite often in Spanish. If you master them, you will be able to avoid common writing mistakes. If you have any comments or questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.
Let's talk about gender. If you have been studying Spanish, you probably know that nouns in Spanish have gender. For example, the word libro (book) is a masculine noun. On the contrary, the noun pelota (ball) is feminine. If you want to use those nouns with their corresponding definite articles, you will say el libro (the book) and la pelota (the ball). Now, what about the noun agua (water)? Is agua masculine or feminine? Do you say el agua or la agua?
Let's take a look at some clips:
Cuando uno tiene sed Pero el agua no está cerca
When one is thirsty But the water's not close by
Captions 17-18, Jarabe de Palo AguaPlay Caption
Y como para completar la historia, desperdiciaban el agua todo el tiempo.
And, as if to make matters worse, they wasted water all the time.
Caption 15, Salvando el planeta Palabra Llegada - Part 7Play Caption
y apenas sus pies tocaron el agua, se convirtieron en dos grandes serpientes
and as soon as their feet touched the water, they turned into two big snakesPlay Caption
Can you answer now our question? According to the above clips, is agua masculine or feminine? In all the previous clips, the word agua is placed right after the masculine definite article "el" so the noun agua must be masculine, right? Not too fast! Let's take a look at the following clips:
limonadas, refrescos o simplemente agua fresca.
lemonades, sodas or just cold water.
Caption 42, Aprendiendo con Karen Utensilios de cocinaPlay Caption
Las formas de presentación incluyen el agua ozonizada y el aceite ozonizado,
The formulations include ozonized water and ozonized oil,
Caption 35, Los médicos explican Beneficios del ozonoPlay Caption
Un día, los vientos del páramo agitaron las aguas de la laguna
One day, the winds from the tundra shook up the waters of the lakePlay Caption
Did you see that? If you look at the first two clips, you can see that the adjectives that go after the noun agua are feminine adjectives that end with the vowel "a" (fresca and ionizada). Also, in the third clip, you can see that the term aguas (plural form of agua) is preceded by the feminine definite article "las". So, is agua masculine or feminine?
The answer is very simple: the noun agua is always feminine. However, if you are wondering why we say "el agua" and not "la agua" there is a simple rule you need to keep in mind: If a feminine noun starts with a stressed "a", you need to use the masculine definite article "el". Let's see more feminine nouns that start with a stressed "a":
el águila (the eagle)
el alma (the soul)
Nevertheless, it is important to say that for plural feminine nouns, you need to use the plural feminine definitive article "las":
las aguas (the waters)
las águilas (the eagles)
las almas (the souls)
Finally, keep in mind that if the noun is feminine the adjective needs to be feminine too. For example, let's say that we want to say "the water is dirty." Since water is feminine in Spanish, you need to use the feminine version of the adjective (sucia):
RIGHT - El agua está sucia
WRONG - El agua está sucio
So, there you have it. We hope you learned something useful today and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
¡Hasta la próxima!
There are many words that have defined the year that just ended. However, we believe there is a word that was crucial in 2019, not only in Spanish but in all languages! With that being said, the Spanish word of the year 2019 was... "protesta" (protest)! Let's dive into the meaning and use of this word.
If you followed the news in 2019, you probably won't need an explanation. From the ongoing protests in Hong Kong to the more recent protests throughout South America, it looks like the whole world was protesting in 2019. The following are some of the headlines that dominated the news in 2019:
Continúa represión en Chile tras nueve semanas de protestas
Repression continues in Chile after nine weeks of protests
5 rostros que simbolizan las protestas en Chile, Colombia, Hong Kong, Irak y Líbano
5 faces that symbolize the protests in Chile, Colombia, Hong Kong, Iraq and Lebanon
De Chile a Hong Kong: el virus de la protesta se extiende por el mundo
From Chile to Hong Kong: the protest virus spreads throughout the world
Protesta has the same meaning that the English word "protest." However, this word doesn't only refer to "a usually organized public demonstration of disapproval" (Merriam-Webster). For instance, the word protesta in Spanish also refers to the oath taken by a President during his/her inaugural ceremony. Also, generally speaking, protesta can be simply understood as a complaint or objection:
Ahí se oye un poco el... la protesta del leopardo.
There you can hear a bit the... the leopard's protest.Play Caption
Check out the following video clips so you can practice the pronunciation of the word protesta and its plural protestas (protests).
Y es un lugar donde normalmente mucha gente que quiere venir a expresar sus ideas o protestas
And it's a place where usually many people who want to come and express their ideas, their protests,
Captions 4-5, Yabla en Buenos Aires Plaza Mayo - Part 2Play Caption
Tú hazme el favor, dámele una pequeña razón a ese señor. Mamá, ninguna razón, reclamo, ni protesta.
Do me a favor, deliver a little message to that man. Mom, no message, complaint or protest.
Captions 77-78, X6 1 - La banda - Part 8Play Caption
Also, check out the following clips where you can hear the pronunciation of the verb protestar (to protest).
porque el veintiocho de diciembre lo que hacemos nosotros aquí es protestar...
because on December twenty eighth what we do here is to protest...
Caption 30, Estado Falcón Locos de la Vela - Part 1Play Caption
Esa no es la forma de protestar.
That is not the way to protest.
Caption 27, Kikirikí Agua - Part 3Play Caption
So, there you have it. What do you think of protesta as the word of the year 2019? Can you think of any other word worth this title? What do you think of all these protests around the world, anyway? Please, send us your feedback, comments and questions. We will be happy to hear from you!
Do you know how to use a punto as opposed to apunto? Do you know the meaning of the expression "estar a punto de"? Let's start this lesson with a little quiz. Which term would you use in the following sentences, a punto or apunto?:
Te ______ en la lista de pacientes.
I'll write you down on the patient list.
What about this one?:
En 1985, Colombia estuvo ______ de conseguir la paz.
In 1985, Colombia was about to achieve peace.
Let's review the meaning of a punto and apunto.
A punto is an adverbial phrase that can be used in the following two ways:
1. To indicate that something is ready for the end it has been prepared for.
2. As a synonym of "timely" or "on time".
Here's one example:
¿Esto lo hago hasta que quede a punto de nieve? -Has'... Ah, no, eh... -Claro.
Shall I do this until it forms peaks [literally "until it looks like snow"]? -Unt'... Oh, no, um... -Of course.
Caption 9, Ricardo La compañera de casa - Part 3Play Caption
While the adverbial phrase a punto is used fairly often, the most common use of a punto is when it's part of the prepositional phrase a punto de + infinitive verb. In terms of its meaning, we use a punto de + infinitive verb when we want to say that something is or was about to happen. In fact, you can think of a punto de as the English equivalent "about to". Let's look at a couple of examples:
La señora pulpo me contó que tenía muchos hijitos a punto de nacer,
Lady octopus told me that she had many children about to be born,
Captions 21-22, Guillermina y Candelario La Señora PulpoPlay Caption
Estoy súper emocionada, pues estoy a punto de ingresar a uno de los lugares más emblemáticos
I'm super excited because I'm about to enter one of the most symbolic places
Captions 10-12, Paseando con Karen Barrio AntiguoPlay Caption
Cuando estaba a punto de huir y regresar a mi casa, hubo un milagro que salvó mi bachillerato.
When I was about to flee and go back home, there was a miracle that saved my high school diploma.
Captions 18-19, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 1 - Part 5Play Caption
If you keep in mind the last two sentences, it is worth mentioning that most of the time in Spanish we use the verb estar (to be) before a punto de + infinitive verb. As we mentioned previously, we use this formula for sentences in the past as well as the present.
Now that you know how to use a punto and a punto de, we can say that apunto (one word) corresponds to the first person singular of the verb apuntar in the present tense. Apuntar can mean:
To point out something
To take notes or write down something
To subscribe to something
Let's see an example:
A cogerlos con la mano, me apunto. -Cógelo con las manos.
For taking them with my hand, I'll sign up. -Take it with your hands.
Caption 25, 75 minutos Del campo a la mesa - Part 17Play Caption
So, now that we have revealed the meanings and uses of both a punto and apunto, it's time to see the answers to the quiz we used to introduce this lesson:
Te apunto en la lista de pacientes.
I'll write you down on the patient list.
Caption 27, Ariana Cita médicaPlay Caption
En mil novecientos ochenta y cinco, sucedieron muchas cosas buenas. Colombia estuvo a punto de conseguir la paz.
In nineteen eighty-five, many good things happened. Colombia was about to achieve peace.
Captions 2-3, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 1 - Part 2Play Caption
And that's it for now. We hope you enjoyed this lesson and don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.