posted by .

How can I know when to use the preterite or imperfect form of verbs?

  • Spanish -

    Here are some sites with a good explanation of those two tenses.

  • Spanish -

    Thank you for using the Jiskha Homework Help Forum. This was always one of my favorite things to teach!

    Imagine, if you will, that you are going to paing a mural. You begin with the background (~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ). That is the imperfect, which in one word is "description." Note the English: was + ing, used to + infinitive, "ed" which overlaps with the Preterit. Now you paint the action. This is the Preterit. (/-/-/-/) Note the English: DID or "ed." The lines represent "ongoing event; we have no idea when it began nor if it ver ended = Imperfect vs. the lines that represent an action with a beginning and an ending = Preterit.

    To illustrate: I used to be walking toward the door = salía = I was leaving the room. BUT I never go through the door way. This is the Imperfect. Then I walked to the door, through the door and around the corner = I DID leave the room. This is the Preterit. Happily my students always got the difference between the 2 past tenses. This makes the Spanish language so much "richer."


Respond to this Question

First Name
School Subject
Your Answer

Similar Questions

  1. spanish

    Did I use the preterite/imperfect forms of these verbs (words in capitals) correctly in the following two paragraphs?
  2. Spanish Preterite Check!!!!

    Could someone tell me if these are the only things that I need to know for the Preterite?
  3. Spanish

    se viste ustede rápidamente o despacio? for this question would I answer in the present, imperfect, or preterite?
  4. Spanish

    for the verbs ending in car, gar, zar i thought you only change the "yo" form but i learned that for conjugar becomes conjuguen. would that be in the present and not preterite?
  5. spanish

    how do you distinguish the difference between preterite and imperfect use in a sentence?
  6. Spanish

    Preterite vs. Imperfect I'm just trying to clarify the differences. For example: 1. The food was delicious-imperfect?
  7. Spanish Check??

    Preterit and imperfect? StartFragment --> A. Choose the correct preterite tense conjugation. t� (dar) das dabas diste B. Choose the correct imperfect tense conjugation. las gatas (ir) iban van fueron C. Choose the correct
  8. Spanish 2

    All the verbs that have not been conjugated need to be either in preterite or imperfect form. My spanish teacher hasn't really explained it that well and I am confused on how to know whether its imperfect or preterite.Now we have a …
  9. Spanish

    Write a paragraph using the preterite & the imperfect and tell about: ¿Qué hacías o jugabas cuando eras niño (5 o 6 años) (a)?
  10. Spanish II

    Write a paragraph using the preterite & the imperfect and tell about: ¿Cuál era tu pasatiempo favorito cuando tenias 12 años?

More Similar Questions