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https://www.duolingo.com/tariqnisarahmed

More grammar tips, please! (At least for mobile app.)

Just did the first lesson on demonstratives in Spanish. ¡Que llastima!

If the lesson structure remains the same then here, for sure, is a lesson that needs popup grammar tips! (At least on mobile.)

That's because all the forms are introduced at once without enough context to differentiate why, for example, neuter forms are used.

After the lesson, I came back to a web browser and searched the Spanish topics hoping to find a good and simple primer. I used this search, "eso ese esa esto este esta," and the results were useful but not straightforward and simplifying. The most helpful commentator still found her own explanation confusing, asking "are you confused yet?"

Seriously? There are many solutions here.

1) If Duolingo wants fewer changes, that's not a problem if the (a) the lessons teach each set of demonstratives in clear groups -- so teach all the male forms in one lesson. Or teach all the this/these forms at once, etc. Or (b) supply grammar tips for lessons like these.

2) A different tack would be to supply links to preferred grammar texts. I ran the same search in Google and pulled up a great list of resources: https://www.google.com/search?q=eso+ese+esa+esto+este+esta

3) If Duolingo does not want to give us a textbook -- which is a reasonable position, then in lessons like this one, make hyperlink/hints work harder: include as the last "hint" a recommended search link. So you click on eso or esto, etc, and the last hint opens this search https://www.google.com/search?q=eso+ese+esa+esto+este+esta in a new window.

That could work for any similar language concept that would benefit from a quick table or clear exposition.

Here's one that I copied for educational purposes from: http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/demonstratives.htm

The demonstrative adjectives also have four forms: este libro (this book) estos libros (these books) esta pluma (this pen) estas plumas (these pens)

ese libro (that book) esos libros (those books) esa pluma (that pen) esas plumas (those pens)

aquel libro (that book over there) aquellos libros (those books over there) aquella pluma (that pen over there) aquellas plumas (those pens over there)

Here are the corresponding demonstrative pronouns: este (this one - masculine) estos (these ones - masculine) esta (this one - feminine) estas (these ones - feminine)

ese (that one - masculine) esos (those ones - masculine) esa (that one - feminine) esas (those ones - feminine)

aquel (that one over there - masc.) aquellos (those ones over there - masc.) aquella (that one over there - fem.) aquellas (those ones over there - fem.)

Each demonstrative pronoun also has a neuter form. They do not change for number or gender, and they are used to refer to abstract ideas, or to an unknown object. esto (this matter, this thing) eso (that matter, that thing) aquello (that matter/thing over there)

4 years ago

2 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/alvarojimpal
alvarojimpal
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"Just did the first lesson on demonstratives in Spanish. ¡Que llastima!"

"Llàstima" is catalan and "lástima" is spanish

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tariqnisarahmed

¡Gracias! I (mis?)-recalled that expression from a Spanish course in the '90's :) Not sure if I hit it here or not, too. But glad to know I was on the right peninsula. ;)

4 years ago