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Comprehension - Frequently Used Questions

This Spanish Easy Review comprehension quiz takes a look at frequently used questions. If you have been following along with the series of Spanish Easy Review quizzes that have been created in a progressive learning order, you should, at this point, have a pretty good understanding of many vocabulary words and even creating simple sentences. Generally, when learning any new language, the first thing a new learner does is to try and learn some of the very basic questions that someone might need to ask if they were to visit a foreign country.

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This quiz has been designed to help you with a listing of a few of those questions. The quiz contains 10 questions in English and you will need to determine what the translation of those questions are in Spanish. Let’s do one example here.

QUESTION: Where is the bank?

ANSWERS:

  • (a) ¿Donde esta el banco?
  • (b) ¿Dónde esta el banco?
  • (c) ¿Dónde está el banco?
  • (d) ¿Dónde esta un banco?

SOLUTION: Looking at each word in the question, the Spanish word for bank is banco and it is a masculine word. It is translated correctly in each answer. Now we have the bank. Answer (d) is showing 'a bank' so it is not a correct translation. Now look at the question word 'where'. Remember, nearly all question words use an accent mark. Answer (a) does not show an accent mark on 'donde' so it is not a correct translation. This leaves us with the verb 'is'. The Spanish verb for 'is' (when referring to a geographical location) is 'está'. Notice that it also has an accent mark. This now shows you that the correct translation of the question is Answer (c).

Now it is your turn to locate the correct Spanish translation of the following frequently used questions. You will come across some words that you have not yet learned. In those cases, the correct translation will be given. However, please take the time to learn any new vocabulary words provided as they may be used again in other quizzes.

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  1. Where am I?
    The first answer provides a nonsensical translation. It reads, 'Where am I of I?' It clearly is not the correct translation. As your current location is only temporary, you will need to use the temporary 'to be' verb in Spanish which is 'estar'. The more permanent 'to be' verb in Spanish is 'ser'. The second answer has used the permanent 'to be' verb so it is not a correct translation for this question. The Spanish word 'de' means 'from'. That word does not appear in the question that was asked. The last answer reads, 'Where am I from?' It, too, is not the correct translation. The third answer reads, 'Where am I?'. It is the correct translation.
  2. Where is the bathroom?
    As the Spanish word for 'where' and the definite article for 'the' have been translated correctly in each answer, look at the word 'bathroom'. The Spanish word for bathroom is baño. It is a masculine word and it contains a tilde over the 'n'. The third and fourth answers do not show a tilde so neither of them contains the correct translation. The location of a bathroom will involve a geographical location. When the word 'to be' refers to a geographical location, the Spanish verb 'estar' is to be used. The last answer shows the Spanish 'to be' verb derived from 'ser' so it, too is not a correct translation. The first answer does show the correct Spanish translation for: Where is the bathroom?.
  3. Can you help me?
    A new verb is used here. The verb is puede which comes from poder and is an irregular verb. It means 'to be able' and, when used in the active form rather than the base form, means 'can'. The verb ayudar is the base Spanish verb for help. 'Me' is translated correctly in each answer as well. In Spanish, 'me' is pronounced as 'may'. The question is asking, 'can you...' This means that you need to look for the pronoun for 'you'. 'Él' is the pronoun for 'he', 'ella' is the pronoun for 'she', 'ellos' is the pronoun for 'they' and 'usted' is the pronoun for 'you'. Only the last answer has used the correct pronoun and shows the correct translation of the question.
  4. Do you speak English?
    The Spanish word for English is inglés. It has an accent mark. The last answer does not have an accent mark so it is not the correct translation. The Spanish word for 'do you speak' is 'habla'. 'Speak' does not contain any accent marks which means that the first and third answers can also be eliminated. The second answer shows the correct spelling and translation of the asked question making it the correct answer.
  5. What is your name?
    In Spanish when writing a question, the sentence MUST always begin with a question mark and end with a question mark. The last answer shows only one question mark at the end making it a wrong translation. The Spanish possessive pronoun for 'your' is 'se'. It does not contain an accent mark. The third answer shows it with an accent mark which means that it, too, is not the correct translation. When asking this question in Spanish, rather than asking 'what is your name?' it is translated as 'how do you call yourself?'. That means that the question word is how. In Spanish the word for how is cómo. Notice that there is an accent mark on the first 'o'. The second answer shows an accent mark on the second 'o' which is incorrect. Therefore, the first answer is the correct translation needed here.
  6. What time is it?
    Remember, most question words contain an accent mark. The question word in both the second and last answers are missing an accent mark which means that they are not the correct translation. In Spanish, when asking for the time, you are actually asking 'what hour is it?'. The Spanish word for hour is hora. The first answer is asking 'What day is it?' Therefore, the third answer shows the correct translation that is needed.
  7. Where is the train station?
    This question contains two new vocabulary words, tren for train and la estación for the station. They have been translated correctly for you in each answer. Please study these new words. Notice that in Spanish 'train station' is translated to read 'station of the train'. It shows possession so the word 'de' is used to show that possession. In addition, the word train (tren) in this case is being used as an adjective as it is describing what kind of a station it is. Adjectives in Spanish come after the noun. As the question is asking for a geographical location, the Spanish verb 'to be' that needs to be used is 'estar'. The third answer is showing the use of the Spanish verb derived from 'ser' so it is not a correct translation. There is only one train station being asked about so the verb should reflect the singular form. The first answer shows the plural from of 'estar' in that 'están' means 'they' or more than one. It is clearly not the proper form of the verb and not the correct translation. The last answer shows the verb 'estás' which means 'you are'. A train is not a person so it is not a 'you'. The last answer is also not correct. The second answer does show the correct translation that is needed.
  8. How much does it cost?
    You have a new verb being introduced here. It is 'to cost' which, in Spanish, is 'costar' and it is an irregular verb. 'Cuesta' means 'it cost'. Most Spanish question words contain an accent mark. The second answer shows a question word without an accent mark and it is translated incorrectly. The first answer translates to read, 'What does it cost?' That is not the question that was asked. In Spanish, 'cómo' does mean 'how'. However, when numbers are being calculated, the translation is 'how many' (or 'how much'). The Spanish question word for 'how many' is 'cuántos' while the question word for 'how much' is 'cuánto'. When asking for many you are asking for a larger number of things such as, how many children. When asking for how much, you are referring to a singular item such as how much does the sweater cost. Here the question asks for a singular number so you use the singular form of how much. This means that the last answer shows the correct form for how much and is the correct Spanish translation.
  9. What is the weather for today?
    Remember, most question words contain an accent mark. The question word in both the second and third answers are missing an accent mark which means that they are not the correct translation. When asking about the weather in Spanish you are actually asking, 'which is the weather'. The first answer asks 'what is the weather' and although it looks like it should be correct, it does not show the correct Spanish translation for 'which is'. The Spanish word for 'which' is 'cuál which means that the last answer is the correct translation.
  10. In what direction is the hotel?
    This question introduces two new vocabulary words. 'Dirección' for 'direction' and 'el hotel' for 'the hotel'. The word hotel is spelled the same in each language but not pronounced the same. In Spanish it is pronounced as ō-těl. Notice that the 'h' is silent. As the hotel is located at a geographical location, the Spanish 'to be' verb to use should be from 'estar'. The second and last answers have used the verb 'ser' making them incorrect translations. The first answer translates as 'What direction is the hotel?' It seems right but the question asks, 'In what direction?' The word 'in' does not appear in the first answer. The third answer, however, does show 'In what direction' and is the correct translation needed.

Author: Christine G. Broome

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