When learning Spanish, we need to talk about not only the present but also the past and the future. But in Spanish, there are many ways to talk about the past. Some people claim that this is because Spanish culture is more nostalgic than others. We are not very sure about that explanation though. Anyways, the point is that there are four different past tenses in Spanish, and sometimes it gets difficult to tell the differences between them. Luckily, to pay attention to time markers in Past Tense can help us quite a bit.
Take Pretérito Indefinido and Pretérito Perfecto, for example. We use the Indefinido to talk about things that started and ended in the past and don’t have any relation with he present time. It is normally used with time markers such as ayer, anoche, la semana pasada, el mes pasado, el año pasado, en 2003, hace tres años…
However, we use Pretérito Perfecto when we want to talk about actions that started in the past but continue in the present. Therefore, we need to use it with time markers like hoy, esta mañana, esta semana, este año, ya, todavía no, and so on.
Try to memorize the time markers in Past Tense by playing this Spanish game online! It will help you revise the different time markers that go with these two different tenses. All you have to do is just follow the steps as in a TicTacToe game, choosing the best option (Indefinido = tuve, or Perfecto = he tenido) for every marker given. Good luck!
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If you found this post useful, we suggest you check out our blog. You'll find more free Spanish exercises and some tips on Spanish grammar that you may use to learn Spanish. We also recommend you try one of ELINQUA's trial lessons to find out what our Spanish lessons online are like!