Paz – My Spanish Word of the Day 8/4/2015

Paz (peace) is my Spanish word of the day.  In looking around the Internet for various definitions of peace, I came across an interesting site called Howcast which provides free how-to video guides.  It has 87 Beginner Spanish grammar and vocabulary videos.  One of the vocabulary videos demonstrates how to pronounce and use the word paz.

One of the reasons that I have been thinking about the word paz lately has to do with the fact that I have joined a free WordPress class called Blogging 101.  Our first assignment is to publish a “who I am and why I’m here” post to introduce ourselves to the world.

My name is Susan.  I am certified as an English as a Second Language teacher and I also consider myself a perpetual student of Spanish.  Although I studied Spanish at the university, since graduation I have not had the opportunity to use this beautiful language often.  I do what I can to maintain and improve my language skills.  I have a continuous curiosity about Spanish.

I created this blog for two reasons.

The first reason is that I want to journal about how I work on my Spanish skills in my daily life.  I will write about books I have read, television shows and films I have viewed, Internet sites, personal thoughts, and conversations with others.

The second reason has to do with my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.  I create Spanish and English as a Second Language teaching materials and sell them at Teachers Pay Teachers.  I will publish free samples of my work here.  I would like to use this blog as a way to connect with my followers at Teachers Pay Teachers as well as with any student or teacher who may happen to run across it as they search the Internet for teaching and learning materials.

I am fascinated by other cultures and languages. I hope that providing information about the Spanish language and culture will in some small way help to bring bit of understanding and paz to our planet.

Se – My Spanish Word of the Day 7/9/2015

Se is a pronoun with many uses.  I just finished reading The Nine Uses of Se from El Blog Para Aprender Esapñol.  This is a wonderful blog.  Raquel and María are Spanish teachers based in Madrid who give Spanish lessons via Skype.  They also share lots of wonderful information and videos for Spanish students.

Here is a very, very brief summary of the EBPAES post.

1. Reflexive Se

Reflexive verbs are generally used when talking about the body, clothing, or feelings.

Mi hija se peina en el baño.   (She combs her hair in the bathroom.)

2. Pronominal Se

Some verbs only have a reflexive form.  A non-reflexive form does not exist.

arrepentirse –  to regret   Se arrepintió de decir eso. (He regretted saying that.)

3. Reciprocal Se

This form is used to express each other.

Se pelearon porque no se entendían.   (They fought with each other because they did not understand each other.)

4.Some verbs have a reflexive and non-reflexive form.  These verbs change their meaning when used reflexively.

admirar – to admire     admirarse – to be amazed

5. Se as an Indirect Object Pronoun

Ella se lo da.  (She gives it to him.)

6. Emphatic Se

¡Se pasó la noche conduciendo!   (She drove all night!)

7. No fault Se

El vaso se cayó.  (The glass fell down.)

8. Se Impersonal

This is a type of passive voice.  It is used to describe situations in general.  Sometimes this kind of verb has a direct object and other times it doesn’t.  If a direct object is used, it requires the personal a.

Se vive bien en Aspen.   (One lives well in Aspen.)

Se detuvo a los ladrones.   (They stopped the robbers.)

9. Passive Se

This is the true passive voice.

Se dice coche en España y carro en México.

As I said above, this has been a very brief summary.  I hope you will take the time to read the entire blog post at El Blog Para Aprender Español.

Se certainly is a multi-tasking word!

 

Parecer vs Parecerse

I have always found reflexive, pronominal, and reciprocal verbs challenging to understand and use. An example of a verb that has both a pronominal and non-pronominal form is parecer.  Parecer means to appear, to seem, to look.  The pronominal form of the verb – parecerse – means to appear alike, to seem alike, to look alike.  Notice the use of the pronominal and non-pronminal forms of these verbs in the following sentences:

pareces cansado.

Tú pareces cansado.

Samuel se parece a Simón.

Twin Baby Boys Stroller
Samuel se parece a Simón.

I have created a booklet of handouts and worksheets to practice the use of reflexive, pronominal, and reciprocal verbs which is available at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Here is a sample of the booklet.