Masculine & Feminine in Spanish | Singular & Plural in Spanish | Spanish For Beginners Lesson 3

The Masculine & Feminine in Spanish, Plus Single & Plural Forms

In this 3rd lesson of our free beginner Spanish series, you’ll learn about the masculine & feminine, as well as about singular & plural forms. You’ll also learn some useful vocabulary for describing yourself & others. Enjoy!


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Below is a transcript of the role play and explanation sections to help you master the masculine and feminine in both plural and singular.

The role play:

Jesús: ¡Hola Rocío!

Rocío: ¡Hola Jesús!

Jesús: ¿Qué tal, cómo estás?

Rocío: Muy bien, ¿y tú?

Jesús: Muy bien, gracias.

Rocío: Jesús, ¿tú tienes hermanos?

Jesús: Sí, tengo una hermana.

Rocío: ¿Y sois iguales o sois diferentes?

Jesús: Somos muy diferentes. Por ejemplo, ella tiene el pelo largo, rubio y rizado y yo tengo el pelo corto, moreno y liso.

Rocío: ¿Y los ojos?

Jesús: Ella tiene los ojos azules y yo tengo los ojos marrones.

Rocío: ¿Y tu hermana es alta o es baja?

Jesús: Ella es un poco baja y yo soy alto.

Rocío: ¿Y ella es delgada o es gorda?

Jesús: Ella es muy delgada, y yo no soy ni gordo ni delgado.

Rocío: ¿Y ella es débil o es fuerte?

Jesús: Los dos somos muy fuertes.

Rocío: ¿Y ella lleva gafas?

Jesús: Ella sí lleva gafas, yo no llevo gafas pero llevo bigote y barba, ella no lleva bigote y barba.

The explanation:

Jesús: Alright, so now we’re going to learn how to form masculine, feminine, singular and plural words. This is not all you have to know, but is going to be more than enough to begin with.

Rocío: The rules are: generally words ending in “o” are masculine, for example “el perro, el libro”. There are always exceptions, for example “la mano”. Feminine, words ending in “a, dad, ción”, for example “la casa, la ciudad, la lección” are generally feminine. Exceptions: “el problema”.

Jesús: And we’re going to continue with singular and plural now. So for example: if a noun ends in vowel “en vocal” we just have to add an “s” at the end. So for example: “el perro, los perros; el libro, los libros”. And if the noun ends with a consonant – “consonante” – we normally have to add “es”. Like for example: “la ciudad – las ciudades; la lección – las lecciones”. As I told you at the beginning of the lessons here you have the three verbs that we’re going to use today. “Tener, ser” and “llevar”: to have, to be and to wear. When I describe myself, or when I describe my sister, I say for example: “Yo tengo, ella tiene”: I have, she has. And it works for, for example, “el pelo”, so I say: “Yo tengo el pelo corto, ella tiene el pelo largo”. I have short hair, she has long hair. And it also works for “Moreno, rubio, castaño, pelirrojo”, which mean: black hair, blonde hair, brown hair, red hair. “Liso, rizado”, straight hair, curly hair. And “los ojos”: the eyes. I say “ojos marrones, ojos azules, ojos verdes”, which mean: brown eyes, blue eyes, green eyes. Here we have to pay attention to two different things, and those things are that in English, for example, we normally say the adjective before the noun, so we say brown eyes” and in Spanish it is right the opposite, we say “ojos marrones”…And it also depends whether it is singular or plural, for example, in English it doesn’t change if you’re talking about a noun that is in plural, like the case of “ojos”, you say always brown, brown eyes. But in Spanish you have to change that for the adjective too. So we say “los ojos marrones, los ojos azules, los ojos verdes”.

Rocío: Then verbo “ser”, the verb: to be. “Yo soy, él es, ella es”: I am, he/she is. We can say “alto, bajo”, “alto”, tall; “bajo”, short. Pay attention to this “a”, if the person you’re describing is female, you need to say “alta”. Then we have “gordo, delgado”: fat, thin. “Débil, fuerte”: weak, strong. “Guapo, feo”: pretty, handsome and ugly. “Joven, Viejo”: young and old. It’s not very polite to call someone “Viejo”, to describe someone as “Viejo”. We usually use for things, so it’s better to use “mayor”.

Jesús: And finally, the verb “llevar”: to wear. I say “yo llevo, ella lleva”: I wear, she wears, and it is for things that don’t belong to you, I mean things that you can put on or that you can take off. For example, in the case of “gafas”, eyeglasses, I can say: “Mi hermana lleva gafas, yo no llevo gafas”. Or it also works for “barba, bigote”; beard, moustache. And also for clothes, “ropa”, and here are some examples like: “camisa, pantalones, falda, zapatos”: shirt, trousers, skirt, shoes, etc.