“Easy” Spanish Verbs

What is a verb?

Let’s start out with the basics. A verb is an action. These are all verbs:

run

play

eat

sleep

study

These are all things you do. They are actions.

In Spanish, verbs can be very tricky. In fact, many people get to this part of learning Spanish and decide to give it. Don’t do it! You got this! We are going to break down how to form the verbs – their “conjugation” – step-by-step.

1. Learn the Spanish pronouns

If you don’t learn these Spanish pronouns, verb conjugation will be almost impossible. So before anything else, make sure you know these pronouns inside and out before going on.

SingularPlural
Iyowenosotros
(nosotras for all females)
you (informal)you all (informal)
Used in Spain ONLY
vosotros
(vosotras for all females)
he
él
they ellos (all male or male/female)
sheellathey ellas (all female)
you (formal)usted (Ud.)you all ustedes (Uds.)

As vosotros/as is only used in Spain, we will not focus on it. (But be aware that you may see it places!) Before moving on, make sure you understanding these. Here is a Quizlet to help you practice.

2. See what kind of verb it is: -ar, -er, -ir

What does that mean? Simple! Look at the ending of the verb. This tells us what kind of verb it is. Here are some examples.

-AR Verbs-ER Verbs-IR Verbs
hablar (to talk/speak)
estudiar (to study)
jugar (to play)
comer (to eat)
beber (to drink)
leer (to read)
escribir (to write)
vivir (to live)
decribir (to describe)

3. Take off the ending (the last two letters)

That’s all I do? Just chop them off? For now, yes! Take off the bold letters above. So it would look like this:

-AR Verbs-ER Verbs-IR Verbs
habl
estudi
jug
com
beb
le
escrib
viv
decrib

4. Add a new ending to match the pronoun

Is that it? Is that all that is involved with verb conjugation?!? Yes! So look at your chart of present tense endings below, find the pronoun you need (remember you memorized these earlier), and then add the new ending to the “root” or “stem” of the verb (the part without the ending in that chart above). Make sure you choose the correct ending. It has to match if it is an -ar, -er-, or -ir verb. Here are your new endings.

Singular-ar-er-er
yo (I)ooo
(you – informal)aseses
él (he)
ella (she)
usted (Ud.) (you – formal)
aee
nosotros/as (we)amosemosimos
vosotros/as (you all – informal)
(only in Spain)
áis
(only in Spain)
éis
(only in Spain)
ís
(only in Spain)
ellos (all male or male/female) – they
ellas (all female) – they
ustedes (Uds.) – you all
anenen

So it looks like this when it is all put together. (I’m going to skip vosotros and vosotras because you mostly likely will not use it much if you do not travel to Spain.)

-AR Verb Example-ER Verb Example-IR Verb Example
yo hablo (I talk)
tú hablas (you talk) – informal
él habla (he talks)
ella habla (she talks)
usted habla (you talk) – formal
nosotros/as hablamos (we talk)
ellos/as hablan (they talk)
ustedes hablan (you all talk)
yo como (I eat)
tú comes (you eat) – informal
él come (he eats)
ella come (she eats)
usted come (you eat) – formal
nosotros/as comemos (we eat)
ellos/as comen (they eat)
ustedes comen (you all eat)
yo escribo (I write)
tú escribes (you write) – informal
él escribe (he writes)
ella escribe (she writes)
usted escribe (you write) – formal
nosotros/as escribimos (we write)
ellos/as escriben (they write)
ustedes escriben (you all write)

I know this sounds easier than it really is. But this is it! All you have to do to conjugate it first determine who is doing the action and second, match the appropriate ending.

Of course there are lots of irregular verbs, or verbs that don’t follow a pattern, but we won’t get into that now. Work on memorizing your pronouns and verb endings and your speaking AND writing will become so much easier.

Practice

Here are some more sites that will explain this to you AND give you a chance to practice it:

StudySpanish.com

Conjuguemos.com

LiveLingua.com (Choose “Regular” verbs and “no” to “vosotros”)

Leave a Reply

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: