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Lesson of the Week: Spanish Past Tense Verbs - the preterite

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From the Ay Cosita Linda Grammar Chapter


Here are the basic patterns for conjugating regular past tense
verbs: (for a refresher on present tense verbs, click here).

Spanish past tense verbs chart

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One thing you need to remember about the regular past tense (also known as the preterite)—it is for activities that are COMPLETELY FINISHED. You are referring to 1 specific occurrence, not something that you were doing in the past, and not something you used to do. I DID it. I WENT snowboarding. I ATE pie. I SLEPT. For ongoing actions in the past, you use another tense called the imperfect, which we will study later. Practice saying these 3rd person samples below out loud:

cantar cantó sang
pagar pagó paid
comprender comprendió understood
volver volvió returned
ocurrir ocurrió happened
salir salió left

Worksheet/Activity: Past Tense Verbs

Quiz: Past Tense Verbs

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Spanish Practice Idea:

Try reading a Spanish tabloid magazine with big pictures, either online or from a newspaper store. These magazines offer a great way to practice your reading skills, as the storylines are usually simple and the pictures help you to understand. Don't worry about vocabulary you don't know - try to read through the stories without looking words up in the dictionary. You'll be surprised by how much you understand!



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