The Basics

Survival Spanish for First Responders
... less concerned about polish and grammatical correctness... and far more focused on being understood by the patient, and extracting the bare essentials from the patient's comments. We'd love to hear your questions and comments in our Forum.  Those interested in honing their Spanish skills are provided lots of Reference Materials for further study. ¡Pásatelo bien!

For each topic, vital phrases to remember (if you remember nothing else) are underlined and in red.

Pre-Quiz

La Pronunciación

  • vowels: a = ah; e = ey; i = ee; o = oh; u = oo
  • consonants:
    • ll = yuh (quesadilla)
    • ñ = nyuh (cañón)
    • c = soft before i/e (cerveza); hard before a/o/u (cabeza)
    • b/v = the same; softer than English "b" (béisbol, velocidad)
    • h = always silent (hora)
  • stress: words ending in a vowel or n or s, stress on the next-to-last syllable -- all other words, stress on the last syllable [diphthongs (ai, ei, ia, ie, io, ui, ue) represent one syllable] -- unless overridden by an explicit "áccent"

Las Preguntas

WhatQué?
WhereDónde?
WhenCuándo?
WhyPor qué?
WhoQuién?
WhichCuál?
HowCómo?
How manyCuántos?

Los Números

  • uno, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete, ocho, nueve, diez
  • once, doce, trece, catorce, quince; dieciséis, diecisiete, dieciocho, diecinueve
  • veinte, treinta, cuarenta, cincuenta, sesenta, setenta, ochenta, noventa
    • 34 = treinta y cuatro
  • cien(to), dos cientos...
    • 134 = ciento treinta y cuatro
  • mil, dos mil...
    • 2012 = dos mil doce

Gender

  • all nouns have gender... el hombre, la mujer; el libro, la cerveza
  • most adjective endings follow gender of noun... un libro bueno, una cerveza fría
  • be aware of these articles and endings when listening, but let your dialogue flow

Los Comparativos / Los Contrarios

bienmal
másmenos
arribaabajo
izquierdaderecha
anterior/en frenteposterior/detrás
calientefrío
fuertedébil
rápidolento
abiertocerrado
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