I'm Albine and welcome to Episode 1 of our Tagalog Conversation Series on blog!

Besides the usual Tagalog Conversation Series on YouTube, this is another way of presenting you a practical approach to your Tagalog practice. This new series of conversation is basically inspired by many of my students: either from One On One Premium Classes or from the no-fee Group Coaching...

Or at least one of this series may have been contributed by smart individuals like you who contacted me through email, through private chat, or through feedback from any of my social media posts. I appreciate you from taking your time off to send your suggestions and to tell me your struggles in learning Tagalog as your second or third language.

Tagalog Conversation

Let's start off with this conversation between a man and a woman. The man tries to ask the woman if she can go out with him, to dine out.

Nimuel: May gagawín ka ba bukas?
Chesa: Hindî ko pa alám. Depende.
Nimuel: Gustó kitáng yayaing kumain sa labás.
Chesa: Sigurado ka? Hindî ka nagbibirô?

As a teacher in Tagalog, I don't advice you to translate the Tagalog sentences word for word but I can help you understand the flow of the conversation by giving you its closest interpretation, and so here it goes:

Nimuel: Do you have things to do tomorrow?
Chesa: I'm not sure. It depends.
Nimuel: I want to take you out to dinner/lunch.
Chesa: Are you sure? Are you not kidding?

Notice the phrase "gustó kitáng yayain". It translates to "I'd like to ask you for"...

But it's followed by "kumain sa labas" which translates to "to eat outside".

It shows that the whole sentence "Gustó kitáng yayaing kumain sa labás" can also be translated as:

I'd like to ask you if you want to eat with me outside.

But then you can also say in Tagalog:

Gustó kitáng tanungín kung sasama ka sa aking kumain sa labás.

It can be confusing but did you realize that speaking is an art and therefore putting together these phrases and sentences can't be rigid? That's the point when we choose to avoid direct translations. Art plays a major part in crafting sentences. There are just more than one way to express one's thoughts in one sentence in one language.

Learn Tagalog While Learning Philippine Culture: The Faster Way To Acquire The Language

I encourage my students to also understand Philippine culture because two people coming from two different cultural orientations have different ways of sending the message across. One culture can be more direct, straightforward or blunt while the other is at the opposite side of the spectrum: they tend to be indirect, shy or reserved. Filipino culture lies on the latter. Therefore, without having knowledge on cultural differences, learning Tagalog can be a slow process to the students.

If you're practicing your Tagalog, I suggest you'd watch this documentary video:

Here in Aralín World community, one way of bringing you closer to Philippine arts and culture is by hosting virtual events on special occasions. The recent one was Buwán Ng Wikà 2021. Here's sharing our video on YouTube:

BUWÁN NG WIKÀ | Non-Filipinos Practicing Tagalog And Their Talents

English To Tagalog: "Are you free tomorrow?"

Just in case you're planning to take someone out for a date and you want to check if the person is free, this is how you'll say it in Tagalog:

May gagawin ka ba bukas?

Possible answers will be:

  1. "Mayroón siguro. Kauntî."; formal Tagalog and it translates to: "I might have. A few."
  2. "Meron siguro. Konti."; informal; native's way of spelling diphthongs.
  3. "Parang mayro'n, parang walâ. Hindî akó sigurado."; this translates to: "It seems I have (things to do), it seems no. I'm not sure."
  4. "Walâ namán."; it means "no, I declare."
  5. "Oo, mayroón."; means "yes, I have (something to do tomorrow)."

Another way to say "Are you free tomorrow?" is this:

Libre ka ba bukas?


Available ka ba bukas?

Possible answer will either be: oo (yes) or hindî (no).

So, did you have any experience asking "May gagawín ka ba?" or has anyone asked you the same question before? How did it go? Aside from those given above, what are other responses to this question?

Send Us A Message

If you're impatient in achieving your proficiency in Tagalog, I wish that you'd find a few Filipino friends or family who'll be there for you to practice with. Otherwise, our group events and regular meet ups are a great opportunity for you to practice your Tagalog.

Beginner In Tagalog?

If you find this lesson too advanced because you're just starting to learn Tagalog, we have a well-thought program available to beginners like you!

But most importantly, we're committed to hold your hand in your Tagalog journey. We understand the fun but difficulty in keeping the relationship with your Filipino colleague or friend or family that's why we can empathize with our students. We're consistent while at the same time persistent in finding ways to level up our modules because we believe that we evolve in certain awesome ways. Are you open to such beautiful evolution?

We're sending the syllabus upon request but simply click the link below:

Request For A Custom Quote

Salamat for reading this post. It's an honor to have served you here but I hope that you're doing well.

Kitakits! 🥰