7 common mistakes in Spanish language

7 common mistakes in Spanish language

1) HUBO O HUBIERON

The verb “haber” is impersonal, therefore it is just conjugated in the third person singular (unless it forms a compound tense verb, as “he barrido”, “habían salido”, etc.)

2) QUE O DE QUE

A practical way to know if I should use “que” or “de que”after the verb, it is replacing it with “esto” or “de esto”.

For example:

  • Me di cuenta de que te quería –  It is correct, because I replace “Me di cuenta de esto”
  • Creo que se te fue la mano – It is correct, because I replace “Creo esto
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Note that some verbs take before “de que” another preposition: Convinimos en que lo haríamos; Quedamos en que volverías.

3) DISTE O DISTES

The second person singular of the pretérito perfecto simple is conjugated without s, since actually it must end with the equivalent pronoun TE to such a person, and no pronoun TES. Therefore it must be said DISTE, VINISTE, DIJISTE, VOLVISTE, etc.

The same happens with the pronoun LO after the verb. Such as “tráiganlo”, but never “tráiganlon”, since there is no LON pronoun.

4) DIJERON O DIJIERON

Verbs terminated on -ducir (reducir, producir, etc) and the verb “decir” make the pretérito perfecto simple with J instead of C, but not I. Therefore, it is: dijeron, redujeron, produjeron, etc.

5) LA PRIMER O LA PRIMERA

“Primer” and “tercer” are short apocopes (short forms) of “primero” and “tercero”, and they should just be used before masculine nouns. Therefore if El primer curso fue interesante, but La primer aula estaba muy sucia, the second sentence is wrong.

6) ESTE AULA O ESTA AULA

Feminine nouns starting with accentuated “a” have the article “el” to avoid cacophonies (bad sounds) from two “a” becoming together. But they are still feminine: if we pass them to the plural form, article does it as well:

  • El agua baja turbi; Las aguas bajan turbias.

Similarly, whether we use an adjective within the expression, such adjective must be feminine. 

  • El aula sucia; El ave cantora, etc.

“Hambre” is in this class of nouns. It is a female noun, then it must be said “mucha hambre” instead of “mucho hambre”.

7) SI PUDIERA O SI PODRÍA

After a conditionalSI” the verb must always be used as pretérito imperfecto de subjuntivo (amara o amase), since in consequence the conditional tense (amaría) will be used.

Therefore, it is correct to say:

  • Si pudiera evitarlo lo haría de mil amores.

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“¡Hola!  I am Alicia from Valencia, Eastern Spain!

I have a Degree in Teaching Foreign Languages and a Postgraduate Degree in teaching Spanish for adults.

I have been teaching Spanish in Spain for five years using the communicative approach, which balances the four skills and gives students the opportunity to interact which each other in the classroom.

My lessons include a variety of materials and include cultural content, but the most important thing for me is they are fun as well.”

My principal objective: I want my students to learn and have fun in meantime.

Learn more about Alicia…

 

 

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