I don't understand why is Dative used here. Tips & notes says:
,, Movement from one place to another -> accusative: Ich gehe in ein Haus (I am walking into a house)"
,,We are walking to a buliding" is a kind of movement from one place to another so shouldn't be Akkusative used?
So, I understand that zu is probably included here just to remind us that "zu" triggers dative. But speaking practically, is "zu" necessary? It seems like in earlier exercises, the dative articles were enough to signify the English sense of "to," making a "zu" redundant. Maybe it's that certain verbs require zu while others don't?
It absolutely IS necessary when talking about location, placement etc.
There's a difference between for instance "mit einem Freund" and "von einem Freund", yet they are both in dativ.
If you removed the prepositions, you'd be left with nonsense or a completely different meaning, depending on the verb and the context.
And as you said, when you give something to someone, that's also different, because the whole structure of and around the verb isn't just geben, it's "jemandem etwas geben".
In English, there is the "to" but in German, the "to" is basically included in the dativ structure. Hope that clarified it a bit.
I bet it can be hard to grasp things like these when your native language doesn't have inflection (for the most part) so you can stick one word to another as it stands, and without changing anything, it forms a proper sentence. German is a bit more complicated than that. I've been learning German for about 9 years now and still haven't learned shit, even though Czech, my native language, is built on inflection, so it should be easier for me. It's not :D
As igelchen said, it's a difference between cases. However, to correct your question, it should be "Darf man 'Wir gehen zum Gebäude' sagen?". "Man" isn't a noun, "man", meaning "one" as in "one could say that", is correct. The noun "A man" is "Mann". "Darf" is also already conjugated, so "sagt" should be the infinitive, "sagen". Good question!
That's the important difference between the German "gehen" and the English "to go".
In these sentences the German verb already expresses that we don't use any means of transportation but our own feet. The default verb we use for "going by bike/car/taxi/train/ect." is "fahren".
As a native speaker I would always understand "Wir gehen zu einem Gebäude." as 'walking to the building'.
Gehen means going , laufen is walking.
Not necessarily. "We're going by train." = "Wir fahren mit dem Zug."
"Gehen" usually implies that we are using our own feet to get somewhere. Only general statements like "Wir gehen zur Schule." leave it open which means of transport we use. (Metaphorically it is different, though. "Geht es dir besser?" = "Are you feeling better?"; "Du gehst mir auf die Nerven!" = "You're getting on my nerves!"/"You're a pain in the ass.")
"Laufen" can mean walking, but also running. E.g.:
- "Wir haben den Bus verpasst. Jetzt müssen wir laufen." = "We missed the bus. Now we have to walk."
- "Ich gehe jeden Morgen eine Stunde laufen." = "I go running for an hour every morning."
- "Das Laufband ist kaputt." = "The treadmill is broken."
- "Wir haben uns verlaufen." = "We got lost."
- "It's working." = "Es funktioniert."
- "Die Spülmaschine geht/funktioniert." = "The dishwasher is working."
- "Der Fernseher läuft/funktioniert." = "The television is working."
There are a bunch of different verbs for 'movement' in german even if you only count the ones whithout the use of any vehicles.
In general and for normal walking speed we use "gehen".
To emphasize that someone doesn't go by bike/bus/anything but really walks with his own two legs we say "zu Fuß gehen".
If we go for a walk that's "spazieren" or "spazieren gehen" (or "einen Spaziergang machen").
"laufen" may be used as a synonym to "zu Fuß gehen" or in the combination "laufen gehen" which some people use as an synonym to "joggen / joggen gehen" or in the meaning of "running".
(Machines that work are also said to "laufen" = run.)
"rennen" always expresses a fast moving speed, that's what you are doing if you try to catch the bus/train ect..
"sprinten" is focussed running at high speed, like in competitions or a very short distance (to catch a bus/train like "rennen" mentioned above) as well.
"schlendern" in opposite is very slow walking, maybe because you are tired and or bored or you are looking at some shop windows while walking down a street.
"schleichen" is very slow too, but expresses a purpose like being quiet not to wake up the baby or approaching the victim you want to murder or intentionally being a hindrance to / slowing down someone else.