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Preterite vs. Imperfect

Preterite vs. Imperfect

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Preterite vs. Imperfect

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  1. Preterite vs. Imperfect

  2. Both the preterite and imperfect explain past actions, but they are used in different situations to mean different things.

  3. Arreglatusapuntesasí: Imperfect: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Preterite 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

  4. MAIN uses: Preterite: completed action: Fui a la fiesta contigo. I went (once) to the party with you.

  5. MAIN uses: Imperfect: Ongoing, repeated past action (no defined beginning or end) or “used to…” Yoiba a las fiestas contigo. I used to go to the parties with you. (No given time period.)

  6. Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. 3. 4. 5.

  7. Interrupting action Preterite: The action that interrupts Imperfect:The background action (getting interrupted). . Cenábamoscuando me llamó. We were eating dinner when he called me.

  8. Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2.Interrupting action 3. 4. 5.

  9. Preterite: Beginning or end of an action. Empezó a llover. Itbegan to rain. Teminastetutarea. You finished your assignment.

  10. Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. 5.

  11. Preterite: Something done a specific number of times or for a specific duration. Desayunamos en el hotel cincoveces. We ate breakfast in the hotel five times. Comimos en el restaurantepor dos horas. We ate at the restaurant for 2 hours.

  12. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interruptor 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times 5. Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

  13. Preterite: A chain or sequence of events. (They’re all completed actions one after the other) Medesperté, meduchéy fui a la escuela. I wokeup, I showered, and I went to school.

  14. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times/ duration 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Interrupted 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

  15. Imperfect: Setting the scene or describing the background for other events. Hacíacalor y los pájaroscantaban. It was hot and the birds weresinging.

  16. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times/ duration 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Interrupted 3. Setting the scene 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

  17. Imperfect: Time (use era/eran where you would have used es/son) Erala una y media. It was one thirty. Eranlastres y veinte. It was three twenty.

  18. Imperfect: Date Era lunes, el catorce de mayo. It was Monday, May 14th.

  19. Imperfect: Weather (use “hacía” instead of “hace.”) Hacíamucho viento. It was very windy.

  20. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times/ duration 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. Setting the scene 4. Time, date, weather 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

  21. Imperfect: Physical descriptions and states, including AGE. El hombre teníacuarentaaños. The man was 40 years old. Yoestabacansada. I was tired.

  22. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. Setting the scene 4. Time, date, weather 5. Physical description, age 6. 7. 8. 9.

  23. Imperfect: Emotional conditions, mental processes, and attitudes. Siempre me encantabanadar. I always loved to swim. Creíasquehacíafrío. You believed that it was cold.

  24. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times/ duration 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. Setting the scene 4. Time, date, weather 5. Physical description, age 6. Emotions, attitudes, mental processes 7. 8. 9.

  25. Imperfect: Location (as part of setting the scene) Estábamos en Madrid cuandoatacaron la estación de trenes. We were in Madrid when they attacked the train station.

  26. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times/ duration 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. Setting the scene 4. Time, date, weather 5. Physical description, age 6. Emotions, attitudes, mental processes 7. Location 8. 9.

  27. Imperfect: Past Progressive (estar in imperfect + present participle) Estababailandocuando mi móvilsonó. I was dancing when my cell phone rang.

  28. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. Setting the scene 4. Time, date, weather 5. Physical description, age 6. Emotions, attitudes, mental processes 7. Location 8. Past progressive 9.

  29. Imperfect: Intentions. “was going to...” (irin imperfect + a + infinitive) Iban a cantar en la iglesia. They weregoingto sing in the church.

  30. Preterite 1. Completed Action 2. Interrupting 3. Beginning or End of an action 4. # of times/ duration 5. Chain of events Imperfect: 1. Ongoing/repeated action 2. Background action 3. Setting the scene 4. Time, date, weather 5. Physical description, age 6. Emotions, attitudes, mental processes 7. Location 8. Past progressive 9. Intentions: Ir + a + inf.

  31. Verbs that change meaning Some verbs take different meanings depending on whether you conjugate them in the preterite or the imperfect.

  32. SABER Imperfect: knew (facts/info) “sabía” Preterite: found out facts/info. “supe, supiste..”

  33. CONOCER Imperfect: knew (people/ places) conocía…. Preterite: met someone. Conocí, conociste…

  34. QUERER + inf. Imperfect: wanted “Queríaganar.” Preterite: tried “Quise, quisiste etc. + infinitive.”

  35. NO QUERER + Inf. Imperfect: didn’t want to. “No quería comer.” Preterite: refused to “No quise comer.”

  36. TENER Imperfect: had. tenía Preterite: got/ received (1st time you had it.) “tuve, tuviste, tuvo…”

  37. PODER Imperfect: Was able (had the ability.) “Yopodíaganar.” Preterite: Could and did. (Was able and succeeded in doing so on the specific occasion being presented) “Élpudohacersutarea.”