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Lesson Transcript

Sherah: Hello and welcome to HebrewPod101.com. This is Lower Beginner Series Season 1, Lesson 24 - Hiking Through the Israeli Desert. I’m your host, Sherah!
Amir: And I’m Amir.
Sherah: In this lesson, you will learn the verb “to be” in the past tense.
Amir: The conversation takes place in the negev in the afternoon.
Sherah: It’s between Anna and Ofir.
Amir: The speakers are friends so they’ll be using informal Hebrew.
Sherah: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Amir: In the dialogue, they’re on a hike, so let’s talk about hiking in Israel!
Sherah: Israelis love to hike. If you venture out hiking in Israel, you are very likely to end up on the Israel National Trail.
Amir: Or שביל ישראל as we call it.
Sherah: The trail runs from North to South and is almost 1,000 kilometers long.
Amir: The trail is marked by an orange, white and blue striped sign.
Sherah: It can be hiked in either direction and you can hike it in pieces or all at once.
Amir: If you do hike it all at one time, it will take you between 35 to 50 days.
Sherah: The north and central areas are very populated, so it’s easy to find food and places to stay there if you aren’t camping.
Amir: But the south is desert and it’s hard to find places to buy food, so if you hike down south you need to plan ahead.
Sherah: The best times to hike it are in the spring and fall. Listeners, if you go to Israel, why not check it out! Ok, let’s move on to the vocabulary for this lesson.
Sherah: Let’s take a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson. The first word that we want to talk about is מדבר.
Amir: מדבר is “desert” or “wilderness”.
Sherah: In Israel, one מדבר is the Negev.
Amir: The Negev is the desert in the south of Israel and it takes up a third of the country’s area.
Sherah: There is also a small מדבר or desert next to it called מדבר יהודה .
Amir: In English, it’s called the Judean desert. It’s east of Jerusalem.
Sherah: The last word we want to talk about is אפילו.
Amir: This has a few different meanings, like “even”, “even if” or “even though”.
Sherah: אפילו can be used with אז to mean “even then”.
Amir: like in the sentence - אפילו אז הוא לא עבר את המבחן.
Sherah: Even then he didn’t pass the test.
Amir: You can also use it with לא which becomes אפילו לא and then it means “not so much as”.
Sherah: It’s a very useful word. Okay, let’s move on to the Grammar section.

Lesson focus

Sherah: In this lesson you will learn how to use the verb “to be” in the past tense.
Amir: So far in our lessons, we haven’t dealt with the verb “to be” להיות because we don’t use it in the present tense.
Sherah: The root of להיות is ‘heh - yod - heh’ or ‘heh-yod-yod’, so all the conjugations will revolve around these letters.
Amir: Our sample sentence from the dialogue is לא הייתי פה אף פעם.
Sherah: Right, Anna says “I’ve never been here”. The verb is הייתי and it incorporates the pronoun “I” into the suffix. So, הייתי means “I was”.
Amir: The basic verb stem that everything is built on in the past is היה.
Sherah: Yes, this is also the masculine singular conjugation. As you can see, the ‘heh’ of היה has been changed to a ‘yod’ and then the suffix תי has been added.
Amir: Another example of להיות in the past tense from the dialogue is ...אבל בחרף היו אפילו פרחי. …”but in the winter there were even flowers.”
Sherah: The verb in that sentence is היו, which is the third person plural conjugation and agrees with the implied subject “there”. “There were flowers”.
Amir: Here, the ‘heh’ of the base form has been dropped and replaced by a ‘vav’.
Sherah: In all of the past conjugations other than the base conjugation היה, the final ‘heh’ is dropped, and changed into ‘yod’, ‘tav’ or ‘vav’.
Amir: This is why it’s irregular. These letters regularly change around in other verbs as well.
Sherah: So, let’s go over the conjugations for להיות in the past tense. I will give the phrase in English and Amir will give the conjugation. First is “I was” -
Amir: הייתי
Sherah: You masculine were -
Amir: הָיִיתָ.
Sherah: You feminine were -
Amir: הָיִית
Sherah: He was -
Amir: הוא היה
Sherah: She was -
Amir: היא היתה.
Sherah: Were were -
Amir: היינו
Sherah: You were - masculine plural
Amir: הייתם.
Sherah: You were - feminine plural
Amir: הייתן
Sherah: They were
Amir: הם היו
Sherah: We gave you also the pronouns in the third person, but not in the other conjugations because you don’t need them in the other conjugations. The pronoun is incorporated into the suffix.
Amir: If you are wondering what להיות sounds like in the future, here are the two sample sentence from the dialogue. The first is אחרי הגשם יהיו עוד פרחים.
Sherah: Ofir says - “After the rain there will be more flowers.” He uses יהיו or “there will be”.
Amir: The second sentence is אולי נהיה פה בחורף הבא כדי לראות.
Sherah: “Maybe we will be here next winter in order to see.” The verb here is נהיה or “we will be”. So as you can see the future is also based around ‘heh yod heh’ and has prefixes and suffixes. Here are all the conjugations for the future tense. First is “I will be” -
Amir: אהיה
Sherah: You masculine will be-
Amir: תהיה.
Sherah: You feminine will be-
Amir: תהיי
Sherah: He will be-
Amir: הוא יהיה
Sherah: She will be-
Amir: היא תהיה.
Sherah: Were will be-
Amir: נהיה
Sherah: You will be- plural
Amir: תהיו.
Sherah: They will be
Amir: הם יהיו
Amir: Well, that was a lot of information!
Sherah: It was! We’ll let you guys process all that.


Sherah: That’s it for this lesson.
Amir: Make sure you check the lesson notes, and we’ll see you next time.
Amir: Thanks everyone, להתראות
Sherah: Bye!


Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Have you ever been in Israel?

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 03:16 PM
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Hi Annemarie,

Thank you for leaving a comment.

We're checking the lesson and will post again about the update.

Thank you for your patience.



Team HebrewPod101.com

Monday at 06:10 AM
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Random but, at 8:07-11 I think there's an edit that didn't get cut out? he says his line then again, and repeats it, as though he didn't want to keep the first version of it?? yes? ;)

Thanks so much you guys for all the inside info on terms and phrases, as well as culture!

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 06:11 PM
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Shalom Yitzchak,

Great to hear! Thank you for studying with us and asking us! If you have any more questions, please let us know.

Wishing you the best of luck with your Hebrew studies,


Team HebrewPod101.com

Monday at 10:30 PM
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Got it. Thanks.

Monday at 01:41 AM
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Hi Yitzchak,

Thanks for sharing your work and for posting your question!

First, your phrase - note a few little corrections:

כן. אני כאן עכשיו! וביקרתי פה *גם* כמה פעמים כשהייתי ילד. אבל *אני* עדיין לא יודע אם אהיה פה לעולם.

Second - the words "כאן" and "פה" are simply synonyms :)



Team HebrewPod101.com

Friday at 10:32 PM
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Sorry. Random question that my response reminded me of: what’s the difference between פה and כאן?



Friday at 10:31 PM
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כן. אני כאן עכשיו! ובקרתי גם פה כמה פעמים כשהייתי ילד.אבל עדיין לא יודע אם אהיה פה לעולם.

Yes. I’m here right now! And I also visited Israel a few times as a kid. I still don’t know

if I’m here for good good.

Saturday at 11:35 PM
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Hi Camilla,

Thanks for posting and for sharing :)

Nice to hear! is there another planned visit?

Good work, but you have a few little typos - allow me to correct you :

כן הייתי שם שלוש פעמים, *בפעם* הראשונה הייתי *לבד*, *בפעם* השניה היו איתי מספר חברים (word order) *ובפעם* האחרונה אמא שלי היתה איתי.



Team HebrewPod101.com

Friday at 08:18 PM
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כן הייתי שם שלוש פעמים, הפעם הראשונה הייתי לבת, הפעם השניה מספר חברים היו איתי והפעם האחרונה אמא שלי היתה איתי.

Hebrewpod101.com Verified
Monday at 07:27 AM
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Hi Matt,

Thanks for commenting and sorry for the long wait.

The pronounciation of the vowel 'yee' varies between people, some might stress the i sound, some might say it like in the video.

It's a very subtle difference, and both versions will be perfectly understood.



Team Hebrewpod101.com