The Present Perfect

This is another Spanish past tense to go along with the Pretérito Indefinido (Preterite or simple past) and the Preterito Imperfecto (Imperfect past or things you ‘used to do’).

Whereas the Preterite and Imperfect are used for events in the past that are considered completed the Present Perfect is used more to describe things that started in the past but continue into the Present.

Basically it’s the equivalent of the tense ‘I have done something’ in English and is made up of two verbs as in English, those being the verb to have and then the ‘past participle of another verb i.e. to eat = eaten, to dance = danced, to speak = spoken.

In Spanish though we use the verb Haber + past participle and so it works like this. NOTE that we do not use Tener in Spanish for this tense:

Haber = to have (done something)

he                                                                                      hablado (from hablar)
ha                                  +          Past Participle         comido (from comer)
habéis                                                                             vivido (from vivir)

As you can see to form the past participle you simply remove the -AR from the verb and add -ado, or removed -ER/-IR and add -ido.

There are also a number of irregulars you need to be aware of:

abrir (to open) – abierto (open)

cubrir (to cover) – cubierto (covered)

decir (to say) – dicho (said)

escribir (to write) – escrito (written)

freír (to fry) – frito (fried)

hacer (to do) – hecho (done)

morir (to die) – muerto (dead)

poner (to put) – puesto (put)

resolver (to resolve) – resuelto (resolved)

romper (to break) – roto (broken)

ver (to see) – visto (seen)

volver (to return) – vuelto (returned)

Below are a series of links which summarise the tense well and allow you to practice with it: gives a decent summary here but it doesn’t specifically mention the irregulars

There is a good summary from here of the past participles.

And more from here on the present perfect tense itself. Be sure to do the practice quizzes available on the left hand side.  

Here’s a good practice exercise on BK Nelson.

El Pretérito – The Past Tense in Spanish (Regular Verbs)

The Past Tense in Spanish can be challenging so it’s important to break it up into manageable pieces and study it and practice it well and often.

As we progress through the different verbs I will add new links for you to practice with but for now we will start with the Regular Verbs and some key vocabulary.

Regular Verbs

Below you will find a few exercises to help you revise the Regular verbs in the Pretérito Indefinido (the past tense).

Review of the Preterito Indefinido Regular Verbs with some practice quizzes in the column on the left.

Here is a multiple choice exercise.

Key Vocabulary

And here is some VERY VERY IMPORTANT vocabulary. These words are ‘trigger‘ words for the Preterite Tense. That means that whenever we see them or use them we know we also need to use the Preterite.

Trigger Words for the Preterite Tense

Leaving Cert HL Reading Practice

Below are a series of links that you can go to to practice reading Spanish and in order to do well at HL Spanish you need to read as much as possible.

Remember it’s as important if not more important to focus on vocabulary as opposed to grammar. Knowing the rules of grammar is only of a benefit to you if you have the vocabulary to apply them to.

As such when studying Spanish you should incorporate as much  reading and listening as possible. Reading refreshes vocabulary already acquired as well as introducing you to new vocabulary. Also try to identify any grammar that you have studied, observe sentence structure and see how this translates to English. Doing so will help not only with Reading Comprehension but also with Written Expression. Some of these sites also have review exercises to test your understanding.

A possible form of written practice would be to rewrite in summary form each paragraph from an article you’ve just read. This is excellent practice for opinion piece writing.

Grammar Revision Websites

The following links are all excellent for revising grammar points. Best practice would be to revise the topic in De Acuerdo or (see link below) and then work through the websites to see what exercises you can find. 

Grammar Revision Grammar – Good, simple but basic explanations with some free quizzes attached

BK Nelson Spanish – An old favourite that covers most topics very well. Completely in Spanish. Grammar – Explanations by grammar topic with associated quiz.

Ver Taal Grammar – Excellent site with grammar, vocab, listening and any other number of other components.

Key Vocabulary/Verbs Revision

The following link will lead to a list of key vocabulary by topic. Just click the topic you want to revise and work you’re way down through the list. It makes sense to follow the order of topics according to number so make a start there.

Basic Vocab by topic

Some More Basic Vocabulary by Topic

Key Verbs Conjugation Activities

For more advanced sets check these links: Flashcards – Browse the pages to find the set your looking for then learn and practice with activities. Vocab Lists – Some of these you need to pay for but the basic ones are free anyway.

5 Curso: Por v Para

Por and Para can cause a lot of problems for the English speaker, especially when we pigeon hole both words as meaning ´for´. In reality the uses of each can be far more nuanced, specifically ‘Por’.

I would advise you to focus specifically on the uses of ‘Para’ though as these are fewer and in my opinion are slightly more logical, you can then almost assume that most other uses are served by ‘Por’ (it is also advisable to learn some of the set expressions and idioms used with ‘por’, they are many)

Have a look at the following links:

A decent review of the uses of both from

Another summary from

A nice little discussion on the subtle differences sometimes seen between Por and Para, particularly when speaking of motives. 


Some practice exercises:

The ever reliable BK Nelson

Por v Para 1

Por v Para 2

Loads of links to various exercises here

º5 Curso – Deberes de Semana Santa

Los deberes para la Semana Santa son todos de La Pluma:

  1. Hay que terminar las actividades de la última clase – La Pluma p.102 Pr. 1, 2 y 3
  2. En un Café – La Pluma p.103 – 105 Pr. 1, 2 y 3.

Si tienes algunas preguntas envíame un email y los explicaré.