Familiar words are a good way to begin learning a language.
Cognates are words that look and mean the same thing in two or more languages. This is because the words are derived from the same root language (such as Latin). Sometimes the spelling is different due to the language conventions.
Examples of English/Spanish cognates where spelling is the same in the singular:
In the plural of these nouns, Spanish differs in spelling–but the meaning is the same as in English: colores, doctores, sensores.
Adjectives become pluralized in Spanish to match their nouns. Example: doctores impersonales
There are also some cognates that are spelled differently in Spanish than English because of the rules of Spanish phonetics. Examples are: Noun: sicólogo, Adjective: fenomenal
Verbs can also be cognates, but the spelling differs because of the rules of grammar of the different languages. Some examples are:
to practice practicar
to prefer preferir
to depend depender
There are also false cognates where the words in two languages might look the same but have very different meanings. Examples:
Spanish: sopa It means ‘soup’ not soap. Parientes means ‘relatives’ not parents. Sensible means sensitive not sensible.
For this assignment, prepare a list of 5 cognates that are nouns in Spanish, 5 that are adjectives, and 5 that are verbs. The cognates can be spelled exactly the same as in English or can have spelling variations. Do not use the same words as in the examples above. Also make a list of 5 false cognates in Spanish (whether nouns, verbs or adjectives) and translate them into English. There will be 20 words. Label them as nouns, adjectives, verbs, false cognates. (You don’t have to color code them, just label them into 4 categories.)
Include links to your sources of information (online dictionary, for example).
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