Stem-changing Verbs
Stem-Changing Verbs
The stem of a verb is the part of the infinitive
that is left after you take of the endings –er, ar,
or –ir.
For example, the stem of the the verb almorzar
is almorz-.
Stem-changing verbs have a change in their
stem in all forms of the present tense EXCEPT
FOR the nosotros (as) and vosotros (as) forms.
There are three types of stem-changing verbs:
e-ie/e-i/o-ue. Here are some of them….
e  ie
pensar = to think
ei
querer = to want
servir = to serve
perder = to lose
pedir = to order
entender = to
understand
seguir = to follow
preferir = to prefer
competir = to
compete
o  ue
almorzar = to eat
lunch
poder = to be able/can
encontrar = to find
dormir = to sleep
volver = to return
Steps to conjugating a stem-changing verb
1) Cross off AR/ER/ or IR from the infinitive.
2) Write the pronouns (yo, tú, etc…)
3) Change the stem to the changed stem in everything EXCEPT
NOSOTROS AND VOSOTROS.
4) Add the AR/ER/ or IR endings (depending on the type of
verb.
5) Translate pronouns and all forms of the verb into English.
Now you are done!!! If you did it correctly, the stem changed
forms of the verb are shaped like a boot.
Boot Verbs
Stem-changing verbs are sometimes referred
to as “boot verbs”. This is because the forms
of the verb that change the stem make the
shape of a boot
Poder – to be able/can (o-ue stem-changing
verb)
Pedir – to order (e – i stem change)
singular
Yo
pido
Tú
él/ella
usted
pides
pide
plural
nosotros/as
pedimos
vosotros/as pedís
ellos/ellas
ustedes
piden
Querer – to want (e-ie stem changing verb)
singular
Yo quiero
plural
nosotros queremos
tú quieres vosotros queréis
él/ella/usted
quiere
Ellos/ellas/ustedes
quieren
Vamos a practicar:
Conjugate the following stem-changing verbs. When done,
draw a boot around the ones that changed the stem
(everything EXCEPT NOSOTROS/VOSOTROS)
Remember – the er/ir/ar endings will remain the same as you
have previously learned.
E IE
PENSAR = TO THINK
EI
SERVIR = TO SERVE
O  UE
ALMORZAR = TO EAT LUNCH
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Stem-changing Verbs