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Spanish Practice Activities: Reading News Articles with the Preterite

Spanish Practice Activities: Reading News Articles with the Preterite
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Pablo Serna

Pablo has taught college Spanish at the University of Missouri and Central Methodist University, and has a master's degree in Spanish literature.

We will apply the preterite tense in different situations describing events in the past that are completed actions, such as news articles and descriptions of past events. We will read some texts and answer some questions using the preterite.

Spanish Practice Activities: Reading News Articles with the Preterite

?Qué sucedió? ?Cómo ocurrió? ?Cómo pasó?

These questions are often heard when we are discussing something that happened already. 'What happened? How did it occur? How did it happen?'

The preterite helps us talk about past events, actions, and situations. Most of the time, it refers to finished actions or a chain of events in the past. To form the preterite tense for regular verbs, we have these endings:

Sujeto\Verbo cantar comer vivir
Yo cant-é com-í viv-í
cant-aste com-iste viv-iste
Él/ella/usted cant-ó com-ió viv-ió
Nosotros cant-amos com-imos viv-imos
Vosotros cant-asteis com-isteis viv-isteis
Ustedes cant-aron com-ieron viv-ieron
Ellos cant-aron com-ieron viv-ieron

Also, there are time expressions that provide a time frame and tell us when the action happened like: 'Hace dos días' (two days ago), 'ayer' (yesterday), 'el año pasado' (last year), etc.

In this lesson we will practice some preterite in Spanish through some examples of news articles and a conversation between two people.

Let's start!

El Tornado en Oklahoma

El año pasado, el día 20 de mayo, un tornado categoría EF-5 destruyó casas y edificios. El tornado se formó rápidamente y devastó (devastated) una gran región de Oklahoma City. El tornado recorrió muchos kilómetros, trajo vientos extremos de hasta 470 KM/h y derrumbó (tore down) todo a su paso como piezas de Lego. Este tornado causó la muerte de al menos 24 personas. Las consecuencias de la tormenta provocaron desolación y tristeza (sadness) en la población de los Estados Unidos.

?Qué entendiste?

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