Section III: The Spanish Verbs

Topic 3 Present Tense of Stem-Changing Verbs

Los verbos con cambios en la raiz

The anatomy of a Spanish verb.

The verb in its infinitive form indicates the action or state of being with no reference to who or what performs the action or when it is done (past, present or future tense).

  • The verb two parts
    • The stem
    • The ending

      Stem

      PENS

      Ending

      AR

      PENSAR

      To think

  • Change in
    • The stem form -e to -ie, except for nosotros.
    • The ending of an -ar ending in the present tense remains the same.

      PENSAR

      To think

      Stem

      PIENS

      Ending

      o

      as

      a

      *pensamos

      an

Practícalo…

Practice outloud similar stem changing from -e to -ie verbs that ends in -ar.

Cerrar (to close) Empezar (to begin)
(yo) Cierro el libro Empiezo la clase
(tú) Cierras el libro Empiezas la clase
 (Ud./él/ella) Cierra el libro Empieza la clase
 (nosotros) Cerramos el libro Empezamos la clase
(Uds./ellos/as) Cierran el libro Empiezan la clase


Some common stem-changing verbs

  • -AR endings with stem-changing from o to ue, except for NOSOTROS form are:
    • almorzar (to lunch)
    • recordar (to remember)
    • encontrar (to find)
  • -ER endings with stem-changing from e to ie, except for NOSOTROS form are:
    • querer (to want)
    • tener (to have) *tengo in the yo form
    • entender (to understand)
  • -ER endings with stem-changing from o to ue, except for NOSOTROS form are:
    • poder (to be able)
    • volver (to return)
  • -IR endings with stem-changing from e to i, except for NOSOTROS form are:
    • servir (to serve)
    • repetir (to repeat)
    • pedir (to ask for, to request)
    • seguir (to follow, to continue)
  • -IR endings with stem-changing from e to ie, except for NOSOTROS form are:
    • preferir (to prefer)
    • mentir (to lie)
  • -IR endings with stem-changing from o to ue, except for NOSOTROS form are:
    • dormir (to sleep)
    • morir (to die)