Remember you are learning Spanish to communicate, so:
- Focus on study tips and don’t try to learn all the verbs at once
- Start with indicative, presente ONLY- we’ll work on the other tenses together
- You may want to start with the most common irregular verbs in Spanish: ser (to be), tener (to have), hacer (to do/to make), ir (to go), venir (to come), sentir (to feel), traer (to bring), llevar (to take), vestir (to dress), sonreir (to smile), jugar (to play)
- Next, focus on verbs you would use in your context. For example, if you are in the business field, check out verbs like invertir (to invest), preferir (to prefer), transferir (to prefer), competir (to compete), elegir (to choose), reducir (to reduce), concluir (to conclude), construir (to build)
- Look for verbs with similar conjugations, it will be easier to learn one conjugation (for several verbs) at a time. For example: negar, sentar and encerrar are conjugated as pensar.
Here are some helpful tips for how to commit the verbs to memory:
- Make flashcards. By writing each word on a flashcard (with the presente, pasado and futuro on the back of the card), you will create your own study material.
- If you learn best through repetition, write each verb and its forms several times on a sheet of paper.
- Use mnemonic devices for each verb. For example, in order to remember the verb fingir (which means to pretend), one student decided that fingir was pretending to be finger since the two words look so much alike. You can create a mnemonic for any and all verbs and, as long as it means something to you, you’ll remember how to use the verb.
- Create sentences for each verb and pronoun that use presente, pasado and futuro. For example: The dough began to rise. It rose until it was risen. Another example: I broadcast the show today because he broadcast the show yesterday and we have broadcast the show every day for years.
- Study with a friend. Ask someone to tell you a verb and you have to say its definition and conjugation in presente.
René began his teaching career as a preschool teacher in 1997 and has since taught at elementary, secondary and university level. In addition, he is a graphic artist, writer, and researcher of American indigenous languages.
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