Describing your daily routine in Spanish: reflexive verbs & pronouns

December 4, 2012 Alex

¿Qué haces todos los días? ¿Cuál es tu rutina diaria? These are two common questions to ask about someone’s daily routine – la rutina diaria. We can think of many everyday activities including several of the ones we covered in the previous lesson. This one will teach you how to describe your daily routine, “describir tu rutina diaria”, by using reflexive and non-reflexive verbs and other key vocabulary. By the end of the lesson, we expect that you are able to write and talk about your daily routine in Spanish.

La rutina diaria en español – Daily activities in Spanish and reflexive verbs.

First, we will review the vocabulary for daily activities. The video below explains how to conjugate reflexive verbs and use them to make sentences about daily routines,  how to ask what someone does  every day and more. The final part is a description of what someone does in a typical day. Everything is in Spanish but it is slow so it is easy to follow and also includes many important things you will not find in the rest of the lesson. You can activate the subtitles (cc) if needed.

Talking about your daily routine in Spanish: key phrases ad questions

Most activities, “actividades”, are verbs in infinitive like JUGAR (to play) or COMER (to eat), and sometimes reflexive verbs such as DESPERTARSE (wake up) and VESTIRSE (get dressed). In the first example, we will read and listen to a person talking about his morning routine, “la rutina de la mañana”. Sequencing words like “Primero” (first), “Luego” (then), “Antes de” (before), “Después de” (after) and “Finalmente”(finally) are used to connect the sentences in order to make a more complete description of a routine. Pay attention to the way the verbs in the box are used to make meaningful sentences and a complete paragraph.

Despertarse, levantarse, bañarse, desayunar, cepillarse, vestirse, irse, regresar.

Describing my routine – Describiendo mi rutina
Mi rutina diaria en español
Mi nombre es Ben. Yo me despierto a las seis de la mañana. Primero me levanto y luego me baño por 10 minutos. Antes de desayunar yo me cepillo los dientes y me visto. Después yo desayuno con mis hermanos y mis padres. Finalmente me voy a la escuela y regreso a mi casa al medio día.
Read translation
My daily routine
My name is Ben. I wake up at six o’clock. First I get up and then I take a shower for 10 minutes. Before breakfast I brush my teeth and get dressed. Then I have breakfast with my brothers and my parents. Finally I go to school and come back home at noon.

Since this person was talking about his own routine, he used sentences with the structure “Yo me + verb + complement”. As you can see the verbs DESAYUNAR and REGRESAR do not need the reflexive pronoun ME before them because both of them are non-reflexive verbs, unlike the remaining DESPERTARSE or any of the others ending in -SE. For the verb IR, both “Yo me voy…” and “Yo voy…” are possible. Here is a second example, but this time  including some of the vocabulary for hobbies and likes (ME GUSTA + activity), as well as frequency adverbs such as “Siempre” (always), “De vez en cuando” (sometimes) and “A veces” (sometimes).

Hacer, almorzar, descansar, hacer la tarea, estudiar, ver televisión, jugar, gustar, ayudar, limpiar, lavar, jugar.

Describing my routine – Describiendo mi rutina
Mi rutina diaria en español
Yo hago muchas actividades todos los días. Voy a la escuela en la mañana. Después de regresar almuerzo y descanso por una hora. Luego hago mis tareas y estudio para el día siguiente. Me gusta ver televisión y jugar videojuegos. También me gusta practicar deportes como futbol y beisbol de vez en cuando. Siempre ayudo a limpiar la casa, lavar los trastes y hacer los quehaceres en la casa. A veces voy al cine con mis amigos o jugamos juntos.
Read translation
My daily routine
I do many activities every day. I go to school in the morning. After returning I eat lunch and rest for an hour. Then I do my homework and study for the next day. I like watching TV and playing video games. I also like playing sports like soccer and baseball sometimes. I always help to clean the house, wash the dishes and do the household chores. Sometimes I go to the movies with my friends or play together.

To talk about the activities that other people do every day, we will need to use a different reflexive pronoun as the subject will be different too. You can even say if a person has an interesting (interesante), simple (sencilla) or busy (ocupada) routine. Besides you can combine sentences about your own routine with sentences about others, eg. “Yo me levanto temprano y él se levanta tarde” (I get up early and he gets up late). Normally, all you need to know is which verbs will behave in a reflexive way and which will not. It all comes to practice and seeing examples so here is one more for you to learn a few more things.

Hacer, tener, levantarse, cocinar, ayudar, alistarse, ir, hacer los quehaceres, cenar, dormirse.

Describing my routine – Describiendo mi rutina
Nuestra rutina diaria en español
Yo hago muchas actividades todos los días. Tengo dos hijos, un niño y una niña. Me levanto a las 6 de la mañana, cocino el desayuno para nosotros y les ayudo a mis hijos a alistarse para ir a la escuela. Marcos se baña y se viste solo. Rosa hace muchas cosas por sí misma. Yo voy a mi trabajo a las 8 de la mañana. Cuando regreso hacemos los quehaceres juntos y cenamos. Los niños se duermen a las 10 de la noche. En general, es una rutina muy ocupada.
Read translation
Our daily routine
I do many activities every day. I have two children, a boy and a girl. I get up at 6 in the morning, cook breakfast for us and help my children get ready for school. Marcos bathes and dresses himself. Rosa does many things by herself. I go to my work at 8 in the morning. When we return we do the chores together and have dinner. The children go to sleep at 10 pm. In general, it is a busy routine..

Listening activity: My daily routine in Spanish – Mi rutina diaria

Listen to a conversation about someone’s daily routine – “la rutina diaria de alguien”. The expressions in the conversation are very similar to the ones in the examples so it may not be difficult to follow. Make sure to solve the interactive quizzes to reinforce your knowledge about the topic.

Listening quiz: A busy daily routine - Una rutina ocupada

This quiz is about "la rutina diaria de Jasmín". Read each question carefully and answer according to the information provided in the conversation. There is a tip for every correct answer. Press “START” to begin.
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Conversation Script: Hablando de tu rutina en español
Leo: Jasmín, ¿Crees que podemos trabajar en el proyecto mañana?
Jasmín: Bien… Leo, no puedo porque tengo que hacer varias cosas.
Leo: Esta bien! Creo que tienes una rutina muy ocupada…
Jasmín: Si, me levanto temprano en la mañana. Después me baño, me cepillo los dientes, me pongo maquillaje y me visto para ir a trabajar. Luego le ayudo a los niños a alistarse para ir a clase. ¿Sabías que Emma ya se peina sola y se pone su uniforme?
Leo: ¿En serio? Emma es una niña muy inteligente. ¿Y Roger también puede?
Jasmín: Si, el también. Después cocino el desayuno y comemos juntos. Luego ellos se van a la escuela y yo me voy a trabajar.
Leo: Me imagino que terminas cansada al final del día.
Jasmín: Si, lo bueno es que los niños me ayudan a limpiar la casa y lavar los platos.
Leo: ¡Qué bueno! Bien… ¿Qué te parece si trabajamos en el proyecto la próxima semana?
Jasmín: Me parece buena idea…

Practice: Writing about your daily routine

Someone's routine in Spanish - La rutina de alguien

This quiz will require you to complete a girl's daily routine in Spanish. It is a great exercise to practice reflexive pronouns and verbs, and learn some new things about this topic. Press “START” to begin.
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Write a paragraph describing your own daily routine. If it is possible, share it with a native speaker and ask him about his as well. 


4 thoughts on “Describing your daily routine in Spanish: reflexive verbs & pronouns

  1. Juwelene Randle

    I really enjoyed the different excercises and fun & games to help me to comprehend my Spanish work. They really helped me!

    Reply
    1. Alex_admin Post author

      Hola,
      Thanks for your comment. We are happy to hear this lesson helped you. La idea es ayudar un poquito…

      Reply

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