[Ser vs Estar] [Use of Estar] [Use of Ser] [Summary] [Saber vs Conocer] [Use of Saber] [Use of Conocer]
[Por vs Para]* [Object Pronouns -- Direct, Indirect and Reflexive ] [Demonstrative Adjectives and Pronouns]*

Ser vs Estar
Use of Estar
 
A
To tell location.
El libro está en la mesa.
B
To describe health.
Estoy muy bien.
C
With adjectives to describe conditions.
Estoy muy ocupado.
D
In a number of fixed expressions.
Estoy de acuerdo
Está bien.
E
To form present participle.
Estoy estudiando ahora mismo.

Use of Ser
 

A
To identify people and things.
Yo soy estudiante
Esto es un libro
Alicia y yo somos amigos
B
To express nationality
with de to express origin
Son cubanos
Son de la Habana
¿De donde es Ud? 
C
With de to express of 
what material is something made
Este bolígrafo es de plástico
D
With para to tell for whom or what is something intended
Es para la clase de inglés. 
Es regalo es para Sara. 
E
To tell time.
Son las once
Es la una y media
F
With de to express possesion.
Es de Carlota.
G
With adjectives to describe basic, inherent
qualities or characteristics of people and things.
Soy sentimental
El coche es muy viejo
H
To express generalizations (only with es)
Es importante estudiar, pero no es
necesario estudiar todos los días. 
!!!
de + el = del
Es la casa de la profesora. 
Es la casa del profesor. 
The main difference is that estar refers to temporary attributes while ser to permanent or more lasting ones.
The best way would be to think of estar as of spanish version of present continuous or a word being:
The book is being on the table. I am being well. She is being busy.

Also note that "estar aburrido" means "to be bored", BUT!!! "ser aburrido" means "to be boring".


Saber vs Conocer
Use of Saber
 
A
To indicate knowledge of facts or pieces of information.
Ud. sabe su número de teléfono, ¿verdad?.
B
To know how to do something.
¿Sabes jugar al ajedrez?
Use of Conocer
 
A
To know (be acquainted) with a person, place, or thing.
Conozco un buen restaurante cerca de aquí. 
B
To meet.
¿Quieres conocer al nuevo profesor? 
NOTE! Saber and conocer change their meaning whens used in preterite -- see the list of meanings for these and some other verbs.



Por vs Para

Por:

by, by means of Vinieron por avión.
through, along Me gusta pasear por el parque y por la playa.
because of, due to Estiy nervioso por la entrevista.
during, in (time of day) Trabajo por la mañana.
for = in exchange for Piden 1.000 dólares por el coche.
for = for a period of time (often omitted) Jugaron por tres horas.
for = for the sake of, on behalf of Lo hago por ti.
Por is also used in a number of fixed expressions, such as:
por Dios 
por ejemplo 
por eso 
por favor 
por fin 
por lo general 
por lo menos
por primera/última vez 
por si acaso 
¡por supuesto!
for heaven's sake 
for example 
that's why 
please 
finally 
generally, in general 
at least 
for the first/last time 
just in case 
of course!
Para:
in order to + infinitive Para ganar, hay que practicar.
for = destined for, to be given to Todo esto es para ti.
for = by (deadline) Tendremos los resultados para mañana.
for = toward, in the direction of Salieron para Lima.
for = to be used for Es un vaso para agua.
for = in one's opinion, compared to others Para mí, el español es fácil.
for = in the employ of Trabajan para el gobierno.
Overall, para always has the underlying purpose of referring to a goal or destination. 

Object Pronouns -- Direct, Indirect and Reflexive Placement (comparative scale): One gets easily lost in different prepositions, especially when there is more than one and when it is not clear right away which is what. This table describes a placement order (whether in front of a verb or after), which cannot be reversed. It's a shame many textbooks skip it!
se
te
os
me
nos
le
les
lo/la
los/las
Note that (see below for details): Examples
Te lo dijo.
Se lo entregaron.
No te me pongas dificil!
Me lo enseñó.
Se te dijo.
Quiero regalártelo.
He told you that.
They delivered it to you.
Don't get difficult 'on me'! (negative command)
He taught me how to do it.
It was said to you. (passive se)
I want to present it to you. (infinitive)

Placement (one pronoun -- direct, indirect, reflexive):

(After no) and before conjugated verb:  Lo hice el lunes pasado. 
No te presto el coche. 
Me ducho todos las tardes. 
After no and before negative command:  No lo lea Ud. 
No me dé su número de teléfono ahora. 
No se siente.
After and attached to an infinitive:  Voy a hacerlo el lunes. 
Voy a guardarte el asiento. 
Tengo que ducharme mañana. 
After and attached to an affirmative command:  Léalo, por favor. 
Sírvanos un café, por favor. 
Siéntose, por favor.
After and attached to a present participle:  Estoy comiendolo
Estoy escribiendole a una carta a Marisol
Pablo está bañándose
Placement (two pronouns):
When there are both direct and indirect pronouns, the order is ID -- indirect / direct and nothing should come between them. 
Reflexive pronoun always comes first. 
The rules for placement with respect to the verb remain the same.
Te lo preparo ahora mismo. 

Sí, acaban de dármelo
 

When both pronouns begin with l, indirect pronoun le/les becomes se. Le compra unos zapatos. --> Se los compra. 
When pronouns are being attached to a verb (present participle or affirmative command), it is necessary to add accents over the stressed sylllable to maintain the pronunciation:
Pablo se está bañando. 
Lea el texto, por favor.
Pablo está bañándose
Léalo, por favor. 
When one pronoun only is being attached to an infinitive there is no need for an accent. Since an infinitve ends in r, the stress falls on the last syllable. When a pronoun is attached, the stress will fall on the next-to-the-last syllable (i.e. the same as before), since all pronouns are monosyllables and end either in a vowel or in s (for accents click here).
Le quiero hablar.
Lo tengo que escribir.
Quiero hablarle.
Tengo que escribirlo
When the indirect pronoun is me, te or nos, only the pronoun is used. Adding a mí, a ti or a nos would be over-emphatic.
Mama me compró un carro. 
Mama me compró un carro a mí. 
Mama compró un carro a mí. 
BUT!!!
Mama compró un carro.
Correct. 
Over-emphatic. 
Incorrect -- me is missing. 
Correct -- there is no 
emphasis on for whom the car is bought.
When the indirect object is le (or se), either the pronoun only or the pronoun and the noun are used. Adding the noun or pronoun object of preposition is often necessary to clarify the meaning, since le/se may correspond to to/for you (formal -- singular or plural), him, her, them.
Mama le compró un carro. 
Mama le compró un carro a Oscar
Mama les compró un carro a Oscar y Julia
Se las doy a Ud./él/ella/Uds./ellos/ellas
When two pronouns are present and the direct one is the first or second person, then prepositional form is used for the indirect pronoun.
Me presentó a ella. NOT!!! Le me presentó.
Nos envió a Ud. NOT!!! Le nos envió.
That however, is not the case for the commands: No te me pongas dificil!

Demonstrative Adjectives and Pronouns

Adjectives:

Singular
Masculine
Singular
Feminine
English
Equivalents
Plural
Masculine
Plural
Feminine
English
Equivalents
este
ese
aquel
esta
esa
aquella
this
that
that...over there
estos
esos
aquellos
estas
esas
aquellas
these
those
those ...over there
Pronouns:
Singular
Masculine
Singular
Feminine
English
Equivalents
Plural
Masculine
Plural
Feminine
English
Equivalents
éste
ése
aquél
ésta
ésa
aquélla
this
that
that...over there
éstos
ésos
aquéllos
éstas
ésas
aquéllas
these
those
those...over there
Also, esto, eso and aquello are used to refer to statements, abstract ideas, or things that have not been identified. They are of a neuter form, have no plurals or accented forms.

In English, the world is divided into two groups -- this/these which refer to things close to a speaker, and that/those, which refer to things far from a speaker. In Spanish, the world is divided into three groups -- este/estos/... (with plurals and accented forms), which refer to things close to a speaker, ese/esos/..., which refer to things close or relating to a person spoken to, and aquel/aquellos/..., which refer to things far from both.