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Shanna N.
High School Spanish Teacher for 10 years and private Spanish tutor as well.
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Spanish
TutorMe
Question:

When do I use the verb "ser" and when do I use the verb "estar" in Spanish?

Shanna N.
Answer:

"Ser" and "Estar" both mean "to be" in Spanish. Let's start with their present tense verb forms, and then I will provide an easy way to remember when to use each verb. Ser Yo soy Tú eres Usted/él/ella es Nosotros somos Vosotros sois Ustedes/ellos/ellas son Estar Yo estoy Tú estás Usted/él/ella está Nosotros estamos Vosotros estáis Ustedes/ellos/ellas están These acronyms will help you know when to use each verb. Ser-think of the word DOCTOR. Description (Ex. Yo soy baja.-I am short.) Occupation (Ex. Ella es abogada.-She is a lawyer.) Characteristic (Ex. La mesa es de madera.-The table is wooden.) Time (Ex. Hoy es martes.-Today is Tuesday.) Origin (Ex. Nosotros somos de Virginia.-We are from Virginia.) Relationship (Ex. Ustedes son amigos.-You all are friends.) Estar-think of the word PELT. Progressive (Ex. Yo estoy hablando.-I am talking.) Emotion (Ex. Tú estás triste.-You are sad.) Location (Ex. Vosotros estáis en España.-You all are in Spain.) Temporary Characteristic (Ella está enferma.-She is sick.) In MOST cases, these tricks should help to remember. Also, think of this phrase: How you feel, and where you are, is when you use the verb estar. Always consider the context when choosing between ser and estar. With practice and time, it gets easier.

English as a Second Language
TutorMe
Question:

Why is -ed aded to the verb "play" to put it in the past tense, but you can't add -ed to the verb "go" to make it past tense?

Shanna N.
Answer:

Regular past tense verbs in English add -ed to the infinitive of the verb. For example the verb "to play" simply adds -ed in order to make it past tense. Ex. To play=I played. Verbs that end in -e in the infinitive form, will only need the letter -d added to it, to make it past tense. Ex. To hope=we hoped. There are several irregular past tense verbs in English. Some follow patterns whereas others, do not. In this instance, the verb "to go" has an irregular past tense and will not follow the regular pattern of the past in English. The verb simply changes to "went" for all forms. Ex. I went, You went, He went, etc. It has to be memorized through either study, or practice.

Education
TutorMe
Question:

What is the natural approach for foreign language education, and who developed this method?

Shanna N.
Answer:

The natural approach for foreign language learning is a method developed by Stephen Krashen and Tracey Terrell. Where many classrooms focus on grammar based teaching of language, this method is focused on learning language similarly to how babies learn language from birth. Learners will be immersed in the langauge and subconciously will make connections with sytanx and grammar through langauge exposure and repititon. Total Physical Response (TPR) is a common practice used when taking the natural approach as students rely on gestures to interpret the new language being learned. Krashen does not believe in heavily relying on grammatical structures to learn language, however Terrell does believe that grammar instruction can have some benefits in language learning, along with the natural approach.

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