Spanish Present Tense or Present Indicative – Regular Verbs

Posted on 6th July 2012 in Conjugation

Spanish Present Tense / Present Indicative

By Russell Sabo

When learning Spanish, the present indicative is one of the first verb conjugations that you learn. The present indicative, or present tense, is used when communicating about actions, thoughts or events that are happening now. It can also indicate something that has been true for a very long time, and is still true now, such as: Fire is hot. There’s never been a time when fire hasn’t been hot.

Click here to learn more about the Present Tense – Learning Spanish Like Crazy Level 1 Nivel 1

Forming the present tense verb conjugation is easy.

  1. Remove the AR/ER/IR ending from the infinitive form. “Hablar – to speak” becomes “Habl-“, “Comer – to eat” becomes “Com-” and “Vivir – to live” becomes “Viv-“. Removing the verb endings gives you the form of the verb called the verb stem.
  2. Add the following endings to the verb stem according to which ending you removed.
    • For AR-ending verbs, add these endings to the verb stem.
      1. (yo) Hablar – Habl receives an “o” becoming “Hablo”. Yo hablo.
      2. (tú) Hablar – Habl receives “as” becoming “Hablas”. Tú hablas.
      3. (Usted, él, ella) Hablar – Habl receives “a” becoming “Habla”. Usted habla. Él habla. Ella habla.
      4. (nosotros/as) Hablar – Habl receives “amos” becoming “Hablamos”. Nosotros/as hablamos.
      5. (vosotros/as) Hablar – Habl receives “áis” becoming “Habláis”. Vosotros/as habláis.
      6. (Ustedes, ellos, ellas) Hablar – Habl receives “an” becoming “Hablan”. Ustedes hablan. Ellos hablan. Ella hablan.
    • For ER-ending verbs, add these endings to the verb stem.
      1. (yo) Comer – Com receives an “o” becoming “Como”. Yo como.
      2. (tú) Comer – Com receives an “es” becoming “Comes”. Tú comes.
      3. (Usted, él, ella) Comer – Com receives an “e” becoming “Come”. Usted come. Él come. Ella come.
      4. (nosotros/as) Comer – Com receives an “emos” becoming “comemos”. Nostros/as comemos.
      5. (vosotros/as) Comer – Com receives an “éis” becoming “coméis”. Vosotros/as coméis.
      6. (Ustedes, ellos ellas) Comer – Com receives an “en” becoming “Comen”. Ustedes comen. Ellos comen. Ellas comen.
    • For IR-ending verbs, add these endings to the verb stem.
      1. (yo) Vivir – Viv receives an “o” becoming “Vivo”. Yo vivo.
      2. (tú) Vivir – Viv receives an “es” becoming “Vives”. Tú vives.
      3. (Usted, él, ella) Vivir – Viv receives an “e” becoming “Vive”. Usted vive. Él vive. Ella vive.
      4. (Nosotros/as) Vivir – Viv receives an “imos” becoming “Vivimos”. Nosotros/as vivimos.
      5. (Vosotros/as) Vivir – Viv receives an “ís” becoming “Vivís”. Vosotros vivís.
      6. (Ustedes, ellos, ellas) Vivir – Viv receives an “en” becoming “Viven”. Ustedes viven. Ellos viven. Ellas viven.
  3. Here are the conjugated verbs once again with their meanings.
    • Habl + o = Hablo (I speak), Com + o = Como (I eat), Viv + o = Vivo (I live)
    • Habl + as = Hablas (You speak), Com + es = Comes (You eat), Viv + es = Vives (You live)
    • Habl + a = Habla (You (formal) speak. He speaks. She speaks)
    • Com + e = Come (You (formal) eat. He eats. She eats)
    • Viv + e = Vive (You (formal) live. He lives. She lives)
    • Habl + amos = Hablamos (We speak), Com + emos = Comemos (We eat), Viv + imos = Vivimos (We live)
    • Habl + áis = Habláis (You all (informal) speak), Com + éis = Coméis (You all (informal) speak), Viv + ís = Vivís (You all (informal) live)
    • Habl + an = Hablan (You all (formal) speak. They (males or a mixed group) speak. They (all females) speak.
    • Com + en = Comen (You all (formal) eat. They (males or a mixed group) eat. They (all females) eat.
    • Viv + en = Viven (You all (formal) live. They (males or a mixed group) live. They (all females) live.

There are quite a few situations in which you should use the present tense conjugation.

  1. When you are stating an action that is happening in the present. “Hablo con mi amiga” (I am speaking with my female friend.) This action is happening now, in the present, and requires the use of the present tense form.
  2. If something is permanent or continuous. “Él vive.” (He lives.) This action is true now and has been true for his entire life.
  3. You can use the present tense to emphasize something that is occurring now. “¡Mamá! ¡Yo como ahora!” (Mom! I’m eating now!)
  4. If something happens with frequency or is a habit. “Practico español todos los días.” (I practice Spanish every day.)
  5. To state something as a general truth. “La hierba es verde.” (The grass is green.) In general, grass is green and so we use the present tense.
  6. You can use the present tense to communicate that something is going to occur in the near future. “Comemos a las ocho de la noche.” (We eat at 8:00pm.)

 

Sign Up for the Spanish Word of the Day!
Sign Up for the Spanish Word of the Day!

Sign up here for your Spanish Word of the Day! You will receive our daily e-mail which includes:

  • Spanish Word of the Day
  • In-Depth Grammar Tips
  • Learning Strategies
  • Product Information and Short Reviews
  • Some of My Personal Experiences and How They Relate to You
  • Mistakes to Avoid

Shadow left
Shadow left

 

Click here to learn more about the Present Tense – Learning Spanish Like Crazy Level 1 Nivel 1
Google+

Social Share Toolbar

Comments

comments