Identifying Spanish Reflexive Verbs

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Spanish Reflexive Verbs Concepts

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Activity Overview


The first thing students must understand in learning about reflexive verbs is the difference in meaning between a reflexive verb and other verbs. A reflexive verb is one in which the subject performs the action and also receives the action, as compared to something or somebody else receiving the action. To illustrate this, reflexive verbs use the reflexive pronouns me, te, se, nos, os, or se. For example “Me lavo la cara" means “I wash my face” — I do the action, and I also receive the action. “Lavo los platos”, however, means “I wash the plates” — here, I do the action, but the plates receive the action. The verb in this second sentence is not reflexive.

For students to practice this, have students brainstorm examples that could either be reflexive or not, like the above example. Then have them create a T-Chart storyboard to illustrate the difference in concept between a reflexive verb and one that’s not. Under each cell, have students write a sentence that describes the illustration, again emphasizing reflexive and not. If students have not yet learned how to conjugate a reflexive verb, have them skip the description box step or have them write the sentence in English for concept understanding.


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T-Chart with Description 1 Row

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