Estas, estos, esos, esas, ese, esa, etc.?
Does anyone have an idea of how to keep all of these ideas separated? I continually get them wrong.
They all begin with "es"
Then remember these 8 Rules:
First 2 are about Distance:
- Anything close to you (This/These) has a T: este esto, esta, estos, estas
- If there's no T's, then you know the objects are far (That and Those): eso, esa, esos, esa, ese
Next 2 is whether it's Singular and Plural
- Anything that ends with an S is plural (These/ Those): estos, estas, esos, esas
- Anything that does not end with an S is singular (This/That): este, esta, esto
Next 4 is about Gender
- Anything with an A is feminine: esta, estas, esa, esas
- Anything that begins and ends with an E is masculine: ese, este
- Anything with an O and 2 S's is masculine: estos, esos
- Anything with an O and just 1 S is neutral: esto, eso
A kid in my Spanish class in high school came up with "This and these have the t's, that and those, no no no's" to keep esta and esa straight.
Estas / estos = these (plural - cerca) ----------------- Esos / esas / aquellas / aquellos = those (plural - lejos) ------------------ Ese / esa / eso / aquella / aquel = that (singular-lejos) -------------------- Este / esta / esto= this (singular-cerca)
Este/estos - masc
Esta/estas - fem
Ese/esos - masc
Esa/esas - fem
I understand the difference, and I mix them up. The ones that include t are this or these, those without are these or those, and then you have aquello, aquel, etc. I also mix up open and close (abrir and cerrar), and a handful of other pairs, generally because I learned them at the same time. I'm not sure it's a good idea to learn or to teach opposites as pairs.
I think that is the problem of learning all of these esos, estos, este at the same time. If we could learn them separately, it might stick better.
I made a chart -- some Googling will find you one -- and just referred to it until things stuck. ;) You need to keep pronouns and adjectives straight, and remember that the neuters (esto, eso, aquello) imitate masculine. Accents are now optional on the pronouns, even though some folks will say otherwise. ;)
Yes there is "esos". Es el plural de "eso". Esos edificios, esos barcos, etc...
You'll get used to them eventually. Just keep in mind, a native Spanish speaker has to contend with in, at, on and many other quirks.
In, at, and on are not as difficult to explain. Just use a box. You put something in the box, on the box or at (near) the box. A box is useful for teaching prepositions. Some things that are difficult to explain in English are the idioms. I never knew how many idioms were in English until I tried interpreting for the deaf. You have to interpret what they mean, not what they are. (Climbing a wall, for example)
So how do you explain whether you are in, on or at love with someone?
Or what the difference between getting somewhere on time and in time is? And why isn't it at time if it is describing the state of you being there at the correct time?
Prepositions are always difficult because they are frequently used outside of the basic concrete meanings they have when applied to physical space, and very few languages consistently use them in exactly the same way when you start getting into more abstract usage.
You can say I got there at the right time. There are many ways to say the same thing for time.
In love I would explain the same way. You are totally surrounded by it, swimming in it. So, you would be "in" love - or it is in you depending on how you look "at" it.
On time would work with a clock. You are getting there on time - the number on the clock. Just in time is colloquial. It means when I needed to be somewhere. Colloquial sayings are difficult in any language. (Also some ideas in English come from older items we no longer use. Such as CC - carbon copies came from when you used the black sheets, put them in a typewriter, and typed on top of it to make an extra copy - yeah, I'm old :^)
Many prepositions are based on location, though. When I teach them I start with the physical descriptions and move out from there.
Sometimes colloquial sayings are based on the physical idea. I am swamped under comes from the idea of being under water.
I am in Tucson, on Double O place, at my house. Not so simple. Why not in for all of these? Boxes and bowls are good for teaching the really basic use of prepositions, but that's only the surface of their use. And do you use at or near for something that is close? Beside or next to? On or on top, and why does on mean attached to a wall as well as sitting on top of something? I just tell my students to listen and follow examples, and accept people correcting them, because they WILL make mistakes (just as I do.).
You are in your house, too. Sometimes the problem is that you can say the same thing different ways. And at times the differences are only preferential. I would not say I'm at my house. I would say I'm in my house - unless I'm in the driveway and have not gone in yet. Although I would say at home. Hum. Don't know why I use it differently for house than home. I guess I think of house as a physical location and home for what it represents.
People I know that know several languages tell me that English is the most difficult for them to learn.
I probably should have used at home, instead of at my house. And Spanish prepositions aren't really any simpler - por/para, encima de, encima, a, de - all have several meanings in English. I often think when people say English is harder than other languages, they are referring to the spelling system as much as to speaking the language. At least that's what I get from the people who tell me why English is so hard.
I've heard "at my house" used.
I love that Spanish is phonetic. I can read it out loud, say it correctly and not know the meaning of any of the words - ha!
English pronunciation and spelling both have difficulties, but it's easier than Chinese from what I can tell.
I agree it is easy to explain, es inglés pero un poco más dificil en español. I'll try to use las cajas the next time some one needs help in the Spanish forums. An illustration would quickly work as an explanation.
I learned the box idea when I went to a class about teaching people English as a second language using only conversation and objects.
I would love to participate in a class where native Spanish speakers are learning English.
Our local library offers one-on-one tutoring with volunteers. The people who were learning were from all over the world. Our city was a city that was designated a refugee resettlement area. So, we are multilingual like the larger city where I grew up. Do you have local libraries in your city or a place where people could meet? Perhaps you could start something on something like Meetup.com if not.