Spanish -IR Verbs (present tense)

Beginner Spanish - Level A1

Overview

In our previous unit we learned all about regular -ER verbs(-ER Verbs Module) how to conjugate them.The verb Ir happens to be a highly irregular verb. Like ser, it doesn't follow the normal patterns for verb conjugations.Therefore, you'll have to memorize the following pattern for ir in the present tense.

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Spanish A1

 

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Conjugating Regular -IR Verbs in The Present Tense in Spanish

In our previous lesson we learned all about regular -ER verbs (-ER Verbs Module) and how to conjugate them. Now we finally get to take a look at regular -IR verbs and how they are conjugated!

 

Be careful not to mix up the verb IR (to go) and -IR verbs.

-IR is simply and ending to one type of Spanish verb (the others being -AR and -ER verbs).



Now, just like regular -AR and -ER verbs, we use these three steps to conjugate -IR verbs. They are: 

STEPS TO CONJUGATING REGULAR PRESENT TENSE VERBS IN SPANISH

  1. Chop off your -AR, -ER or -IR ending (viajar, beber, abrir) so that you are left with just the stem.
  2. Determine the subject of the sentence (yo, tú, él, etc.).
  3. Add your new ending based on the subject of the sentence. (yo viajo, tú bebes, nosotros abrimos)

Now for step 3, here are the new endings you will add to -IR verbs.

-O

-IMOS

-ES

-ÍS

-E

-EN

 

Do you notice another pattern? Our -ER and -IR verbs are very similar. The only two endings that are different from the -ER endings taught in our previous lesson are the two shaded boxes! These two verb types are similar in many more ways that you will learn in lessons to come…

NOTE! The yo ending in the present tense for all three types of verbs (-AR, -ER and -IR) is -O!

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In Spanish, some of the first conjugations to master are present tense, regular verbs. This includes verbs that end in an -ar, -er, or-ir. Each have a different set of rules to follow when speaking and writing!

If you have not already, look at our -ar conjugation module first. It is easier to learn Spanish present tense conjugation in the order of -ar, -er, -ir.

In Spanish, -ir verbs are conjugated very similarly to -er verbs. Once you memorize the -er conjugation pattern, it is simple to memorize the patterns for -ir verbs

  • --er conjugations: -o, -es, -e, -emos, -éis, -en
  • --ir conjugations: -o, -es, -e, -imos, -ís, -en

Take note that the only differences are in parings for “nosotros” and “vosotros

Below is a list of common -ir verbs that could be used in practice examples.

Vivir                To live

Escribir           To write

Abrir                To open

Spanish ir-verbs

To conjugate a verb that ends on "ir", first drop the ending (ir) then add the appropriate verb ending. 

Example: Nosotros+ vivir. (we + to live)

STEP 1: Nosotros + viv (Drop the ending.)
STEP 2: Nosotros + vivimos. (Add verb ending.) -> We live

Below is an example of the conjugation for escribir:

Yo escribo
Tú escribes
Él/ ella/ Ud. escribe
Nosotros escribimos
Vosotros escribís
Ellos/Ellas/ Uds. Escriben

It is easier if you create a little song in your head that can help you understand what ending to use (-o, -es, -e, -imos, -ís, -en).

Let’s practice!
Answer the following questions and when you finish, be sure to click READ MORE to see the answer key!

True or false?

1. The ending -IR means to go.

2. The only difference between the -ER and -IR endings are the nosotros and vosotros forms.

Fill the blank with the correct conjugation of the verb (given in parenthesis) based on the subject of the sentence below:

3. Mis amigos siempre __________ los fines de semana. (salir)

4. Cuando yo __________ la ventana, mi perro sonríe. (abrir)

5. Tú __________ una carta a tu amigo. (escribir)

6. Nosotros estamos felices cuando __________ regalos. (recibir)

7. Bill Murray __________ en Charleston, SC. (vivir)

8. Yo nunca __________ problemas con el presidente. (discutir)

9. ¿Tú __________ tu vida a tu familia? (describir)

10. Mis compañeros se __________ cuando necesitan ayuda. (asistir)

Answer key: 1. F, 2. T, 3. Salen, 4. Abro, 5. Escribes, 6. Recibimos, 7. Vive, 8. Discuto, 9. Describes, 10. Asisten

Match the ending with the correct subject pronoun: 

1. -ís             A. Tú
2. -o             B. Yo
3. -imos       C. Ellos
4. -e             D. Él
5. -en           E. Nosotros
6. -es           F. Vosotros 

7. Vosotros ____ en una casa. (You all (informal) live in a house.) 
   a. vivimos
   b. viven
   c. vivís
   d. vive

8. Tú ____ una carta. (You write a letter.) 
   a. escribo
   b. escribe
   c. escribimos
   d. escribes 
  
9. Ella ___ la puerta. (She opens the door.) 
   a. abre
   b. abro
   c. abrimos 
   d. abrís 

10. Nosotros ____ en un apartamento (We live in an apartment.) 
   a. vivimos 
   b. vivís
   c. viven
   d. vivo
 

Answers:

1F, 2B, 3E, 4D, 5C, 6A

7c, 8d, 9a,10a

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