"How are you? I am happy to see you. I am a girl. I am from Texas. Texas is very hot. Texas is in the south." What do each of these sentences have in common? They each contain a form of the 'to be' verb in them. That gives you a hint of what this quiz is about. This Spanish Medium Review quiz will have you revisit the 'to be' verbs of SER and ESTAR.
In English, there is only one 'to be' verb. This gives us: I am, you are, he/she/it is, we are and they are. However, in Spanish, there are two 'to be' verbs. Their bases are SER, which is an ER verb and ESTAR which is an AR verb. The next question to ask you then is: Do you remember when to use each of these verbs in a sentence?
As you may recall from the Spanish Easy Review quizzes, both 'to be' verbs are conditional verbs. However, SER refers to conditions that are more permanent while ESTAR refers to conditions that are temporary. Let’s look at a couple of examples.
The first example is the sentence: I am tall. In Spanish this would be stated as: Yo soy alto. The verb SER is used here because being tall is a permanent condition.
The second example sentence is: I am sick. In Spanish this would be stated as: Yo estoy enfermo. The verb ESTAR is used here because being sick is a temporary condition.
Now let’s look back at the opening of this introduction and see it as it would appear if written in Spanish.
"¿Cómo está? Estoy feliz ver usted. Soy una muchacha. Soy de Texas. Texas está caliente. Texas está en el sur."
How are you? (¿Cómo está?) This is asking you about how you are feeling right now. That means that it is asking you about a temporary condition. As the condition is temporary, the verb ESTAR is used.
I am happy to see you. (Estoy feliz ver usted.) This is responding as to one’s temporary feeling or condition. Therefore, the verb ESTAR is again is used.
I am a girl. (Soy una muchacha.) This statement refers to a permanent condition. As being a girl is a permanent condition, the verb SER is used.
I am from Texas. (Soy de Texas.) Although you may move around the country or the world throughout your life, your birthplace will always remain constant. Here the statement is referring to where that birthplace was – Texas. As it is a permanent condition, the verb SER is used.
Texas is hot. (Texas está caliente.) Will Texas always be hot? Not likely as the seasons change. Therefore, this statement is relating to a temporary condition. As it is temporary, the verb ESTAR needs to be used.
The last sentence is: Texas is in the south. (Texas está en el sur.) Do you think that Texas will move its location? That is highly unlikely. Rather, Texas will always remain in the south. Ah, but be careful with this one because in this circumstance, a geographical location is being referred to. In Spanish, when a geographical or physical location is being described, the verb ESTAR is used. There are always exceptions to the rule – including the fact that the verb SER is used to describe the time of the day and the date even though they both of these will change. In these two instances, you will have to remember that the conditions are exceptions and the opposite 'to be' verb needs to be used.
Another thing you will need to remember for this quiz is how to conjugate both 'to be' verbs. In addition, both verbs are irregular verbs in the present tense so you need to pay close attention to their conjugated endings. If you do not remember how these verbs are conjugated in the present tense, please go back and review the Spanish Easy Review quiz titled Grammar: Ser versus Estar. Then, once you’ve got that done, move on back here to this quiz.
There are ten sentences in the quiz that each contain a 'to be' verb in them. From the answers provided, locate the correct Spanish translation of that 'to be' verb.