Indefinite Articles or Los Artículos Indefinidos, refer to the beginning word “a, an or some” In Spanish there are two ways of saying a/an, and two for saying some. Two for singular nouns and two for plural nouns. So now let’s take a look at them.
In Spanish, we have feminine and masculine nouns or the gender grammatical feature. Feminine nouns are those words with the last vowel as “a.” Masculine nouns are those with words with the last vowel “e,i, o and u.” This is regardless of any consonant that may come after the vowel. Here it is in a more graphic way with examples:
mesa (table), regla (ruler)
libro (book), marcador (marker)
The will change in Spanish to match the noun:
a, an = una or un
una if the noun is feminine and singular
un if the noun is masculine and singular
some = unas or unos
unas if the noun is feminine and plural
unos if the noun is masculine and plural
Note: plural means there is more than one item, so the word has an s at the end.
So to add the article The to the previous nouns, this is what they would be:
una mesa (the table), una regla (the ruler)
un libro (the book), un marcador (the marker)
unas mesas (the tables), unas reglas (the rulers)
unos libros (the book), unos marcadores (the marker)
Sadly, there are exceptions to this rule, and sometimes there are words that use el even though they end in a. For example un sistema (a system), un sacapunta (the sharpener), etc.
And there are words that even though they end in e, i, o or u and use la. For example: la llave (the key), la mano.
NOTE: In a group of words, like “lápiz de color” you look at the ending of the first word. So lápiz… un lápiz de color
Now it’s time to practice! I created a practice version from the Objects Graphic Chart. Fill in the chart with the name of each object and add the corresponding indefinite article. Check your answers right HERE.
This is the chart: (PDF version: Los Objetos del Salón Practice Graphic.)
For more activities check out the book “Los Objetos del Salón” HERE. It has many activities for all levels ranging from kindergarten to Sixth Grade.
Last but not least check out this video that can help you or your students practice indefinite articles: