Indefinido Vs Imperfecto

Hola, amigos de “Andrés Aprendes”! 🌟 Today, we’re diving into the heart of Spanish past tenses – the indefinido and the imperfecto. Yes, Spanish has a way of looking back that’s as nuanced as your favorite telenovela plot twist! But don’t worry, we’re breaking it down to the essentials, focusing on actions that are over and those ongoing or setting the stage for other actions. Let’s make this journey as smooth as a gentle breeze on a sunny Spanish afternoon.


The Indefinido: Actions That Are Over


Think of the indefinido as the storyteller of completed actions, those moments in your life that started, happened, and finished, all within a specific timeframe. It’s like saying, “This chapter of my life is done, and I’m moving on.” 

When to Use It:

    • For actions that have a clear beginning and end in the past.
    • Events that happened at a specific time or date.
    • Sequential actions that occurred one after another.

How to Visualize It:

Imagine you’re looking at a photo album. Each picture represents a distinct, completed moment in your life. “Ayer comí paella” (Yesterday, I ate paella) – the action of eating paella is done, and it belongs to a specific day in the past.


The Imperfecto: Ongoing Actions or Circumstances


Now, let’s get cozy with the imperfecto. This tense is all about the backdrop of your stories, those ongoing actions, habits, or the general state of things in the past. It’s the mood lighting of your narrative, offering depth and context.

When to Use It:

    • For actions that were ongoing in the past without a specified endpoint.
    • Describing habitual actions in the past (things you used to do).
    • Setting the scene or describing the circumstances surrounding an action.

How to Visualize It:

Think of the imperfecto as the soundtrack of a movie about your past. It’s there in the background, shaping the mood, not tied to a specific moment but coloring the entire scene. “Cuando era niño, jugaba en el parque todos los días” (When I was a child, I used to play in the park every day) – the action of playing in the park wasn’t a one-off; it was part of the routine, a recurring backdrop to your childhood.


Putting It All Together


To truly grasp the essence of these tenses, let’s picture a scene: You’re telling a story about a day at the beach with your family.

Indefinido: “Aquel día, tomamos el sol y nadamos en el mar.” (That day, we sunbathed and swam in the sea.) – Here, you’re highlighting completed actions that happened during your beach day.

Imperfecto: “Era un día soleado y la brisa era suave.” (It was a sunny day and the breeze was gentle.) – You’re setting the scene, describing what the day was like, an ongoing state that provides context for the story.

By distinguishing between these tenses, you’re not just recounting events; you’re painting a picture, setting the stage, and bringing your listeners or readers into the world of your past.

So there you have it, amigos. The indefinido and imperfecto are more than just grammar; they’re tools for storytelling, each playing a unique role in how we share our experiences and memories. Dive into your past with these tenses, and see how they can bring your stories to life in new and vivid ways. Hasta la próxima, y ¡feliz aprendizaje! 📚✨


Selecciona indefinido o imperfecto para completar la frase correctamente.