What is "el gerundio" and when do we use it in Spanish?

Gerundio is the "gerund", commonly known in English as the -ING form. It basically means to put -ING at the end of the stem of a verb. In Spanish it is used similarly as it is in English (with one good exception) - to express actions that are happening in the moment or to talk about temporary situations.
In Spanish, we add -ANDO at the end of the verbs that end in -AR, and -IENDO to the verbs that end in -ER and -IR. Read on ...

El Patio Photography Competition 2020

Calling out to all Instagram fanatics, travel photography whizz-kids and landscape framing afficionados - here's your chance to get more than just 'likes' on Instagram for your efforts! Enter into our photography competition and we will display your beautiful piece for an entire month in both of our centres AND you could win a whole 15 hour course!

To make it both more fun and fair - the winner will be selected by popular vote: a people's choice award!

Read how to enter here! (It's super easy)

The Free 'El Patio ESSENTIALS' language sheets

As a supplement to your study materials, El Patio is producing a serious series of useful language sheets, covering key grammar topics and tenses in clear and straightforward language to help you as you learn.

Elephants and light bulbs - why we fear grammar and how to learn to love it

Leaping out at us from the pages of our textbooks, grammar is often feared and is often the 'elephant in the room'. But grammar isn't meant to be scary. In fact, it's something we're naturally good at. Grammar is part of our daily lives and is part of what makes us human.

Get Creative: Make Paella [A1]

Craig gives the traditional paella a personal twist. He makes something that's possibly unconventional, but that is easy to prepare, very yummy and quite paella-like. Be inspired, go wild in the kitchen and have a crack at Craig's fill-in-the-gaps recipe exercise. The exercise practises the first person in the present tense, and is perfect for beginners - particularly if you're in Elementary 2 or 3.

Bienvenidas / bienvenidos, welcome to all our beginner students

If you've just started studying at El Patio right at the beginning, here are some ideas about how to get the most out of your course for your future success with speaking Spanish.

Are you a beginner? Here's some extra help …

To complement the first part of our beginner courses we've created two online classes - Beginner Basics 1 and Beginner Basics 2. These classes cover the material you see in the first part of your course. Learn greetings, how to say your name, where you're from, where you live and what you do, plus the essentials of pronunciation and the alphabet.

Surrealist games and the wondrous creations of Upper Elementary 3 [A2]

In this blog, come discover the artwork and writings of Craig's Upper Elementary 3 class and a simple surrealist game, perfect for learning new vocab - particularly the parts of the body.

Tortilla española and a bit about vosotros/as! [A1/A2]

Now that summer is finally upon us, there's nothing like preparing a Spanish potato omelette (tortilla española) for picnics, barbeques, and parties. Besides being one of the simplest dishes to prepare, it can be easily cut, packed, shared - and of course it's ideal to eat with wine and other tapas.

The 6 Scariest Spanish Verbs (A1/A2)

Spanish verbs are scary, right? Yes they are full of monsters and skeletons, but they are actually indispensable to being able to talk well, ie: in full sentences. They do seem to quietly unnerve all of us, so why not have some jump out of the cupboard and give us the full fright!

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