One of the most common difficulties for Spanish learners is how to differenciate between: es bueno/malo and está bien/mal.
Es bueno = it is good
Está bien = it is good
Es + bueno [adjective]
Está + bien [adverb]
Have a look:
Está bueno que seas paciente con tus hermanos.
Es bueno que seas paciente con tus hermanos.
It is good that you are patient with your siblings.
Es bien que practiques español para tu exámen.
Está bien que practiques español para tu exámen.
It is good that you practise Spanish for your exam.
The same goes for es malo and está mal.
Es malo = it is bad
Está mal = it is bad/wrong
Es + malo [adjective]
Está + mal [adverb]
Bear in mind that although they are very often interchangeable (está bien = es bueno / está mal = es malo), when we use está bien/mal we are adding a nuance of being "morally" good or bad. For example:
Está mal arrojar basura al mar.
It is (morally) wrong to throw rubbish in the sea.
If we are talking about a film, a play, a book..., using está bien will imply that, more than being good quality, it is entertaining/amusing/interesting:
We don't tend to use está mal as much in this last context to express that something is not entertaining/interesting/amusing; we tend to say "no está bien" instead.
You will never find es followed by bien/mal. However, está can be followed by bueno/malo, but the meaning will be different. For example:
El arroz con leche de mi abuela está bueno.
My grandma's rice pudding is tasty.
Este niño está malo.
This boy is ill.
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