1. Hola (Saludos) 3


Signs: Buenos días  |  Buenas tardes  | Buenas noches



In the previous activity we began to hear some common introductory phrases. In this activity we will be internalizing some of these phrases as spoken phrases. To accomplish this we will use our toys.



In Spanish speaking countries you will find that people often include the time of day when they greet someone. For example you will hear Buenos dias (good day), buenas trades (good afternoon), and buenas noches (good evening).

Let’s practice our greetings using some of our dolls. We will need a woman, a man, and a young woman. The woman will be referred to as señora.We use señora for an older, or married, woman.  The man will be referred to as señor. And the young woman will be referred to as señorita.We use señorita for a young,  unmarried woman or girl.

Let’s set up our dolls in a line, and then take our personal doll and greet each one, practicing including their titles (señora, señor, and señorita) as well as including the time of day. As you get comfortable with these addressing each person by their title, go ahead and give them names.

In the Morning  (before noon)

Buenos días.

Buenos días señora.

Buenos días señor.

Buenos días señorita.

Buenos días señora Rodrigez.

Buenos días señor Martinez.

Buenos días señorita Gonzáles.

In the Afternoon (midday to 7 p.m.)

Buenas tardes.

Buenas tardes señora.

Buenas tardes señor.

Buenas tardes señorita.

Buenas tardes señora Rodrigez.

Buenas tardes señor Martinez.

Buenas tardes señorita Gonzáles.

In the evening. (After 7 p.m.)

Buenas noches.

Buenas noches señora.

Buenas noches señor.

Buenas noches señorita.

Buenas noches señora Rodrigez.

Buenas noches señor Martinez.

Buenas noches señorita Gonzáles.


Addressing Groups of people

When addressing a group of woman we use the word señora. For a group of young women we use señoras. For a group of men, or a mixed group, we use señores.

Go ahead an put your dolls in small groups of men, woman, girls, and a mixed group. Now using your personal doll, walk up to each group and address them.

Buenos días señoras.

Buenos días señores.

Buenos días señoritas.

Buenas tardes señoras.

Buenas tardes señores.

Buenas tardes señoritas.

Buenas noches señoras.

Buenas noches señores.

Buenas noches señoritas.



¿Cómo estás? or ¿Qué tal?

Formal and Informal Greetings

When speaking to children, friends, you will use an informal greeting. In the case of asking someone how they are doing you would ask ¿Cómo estás? Notice the “s” at the end of estás.

When addressing someone older or someone you would not address by their first name it is more appropriate to use the formal greeting. In this case you would say ¿Cómo está? Notice that there is no “s” at the end of está.


Example: Ana will be asking friends and family members how they are doing. She will be using the informal “como estás” rather than “como está” because these are friends and family.

¿Cómo estás? (How are you?)

Ana: Hola David, ¿Cómo estás?

David: Muy bien.

¿Qué tal? (How is it going ‘in general’?) ¿Qué tal estás? (How is it going ‘specifically for you’?)

Ana: Hola David, ¿Qué tal?

David: Muy bien.



Now let’s set up a number of figurines and have one of the figurines go to each person in our set and ask them how they are doing. The response will be “Muy bien.”

Now, using your figurines, have each person give a different answer to the question ¿Como éstas?

There are, of course, several ways to answer the phrases ¿Cómo estás?

Muy bien. (very well)

Muy bien, gracias. (very well, thank you)

Bien, gracias. (well, thank you).

Mal. (bad)

Muy mal. (very bad)

Más o menos. (so-so)


adiós (good-bye)

chao (good-bye informal)

hasta luego (see you later [until later])

hasta mañana (see you tomorrow [until tomorrow])

hasta pronto (see you soon [until soon])

hasta la vista (until I see you)

hasta el sábado (see you Saturday [until Saturday])