Why does this say "האמא תומכת בילדים שלה" rather than "האמא תומכת ילדים שלה"? I don't understand what purpose the -ב serves here...
I believe it's simply the case that the verb "לתמוך" naturally always takes the preposition "-ב" with whatever is being looked after. So while the verb "support" in English takes no preposition, it does take a preposition in Hebrew. The "ba" sound it makes is a combination of "be" (the normal sound of the preposition" and "ha" (the definite article, "the"). Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong!
It is typical for czech woman too. They stay with a child at home up to the third year! No nursery! The best for CHILD.
The -ב prefix is one I saw earlier in "We sleep at night" and "I swim in the water", and thought it was a place/time indicator. But here it is used for a direct object instead of, eg, תומכת את הילדים?
Yes. It can function as a preposition that indicates both place and time (when it indicates time, you can consider it as indicating "place in time"). And it also can serve as a indirect object preposition that doesn't imply place or time, like in this sentence. I know it sounds weird in English, but in Hebrew, the object after לתמוך is indirect.
Is it common to use and if it is when would you use it? Is a more apt translation she is supportive to her children? Also is it ok to just switch ב to ה or is it just completely gramatically incorrect in this case?
It's not only the most common, it's the only option in this particular sentence. And the preposition ב is actually the only option in this case. You can't write היא תומכת הילדים שלה because after the verb "to support" in hebrew an indirect object must follow. When the ה (definite article) stands alone - without any preposition (like ב), then we're talking about a direct object, which is not the case here (again, in Hebrew the verb to support requiers an indirect object). I guess you wouldn't translate it into She is supportive to her children because this is not an equivalent translation. The Hebrew sentence is about an actual verb (to support) and not just a description of the mother's attitude.
Why do we need the ב in the בילדים? Would't that make "The mom supports in her children."?
I remember seeing a discussion on this lesson about אמא, אבא not requiring ה. So which way is it?
Is there any difference between supporting her own children and her (another woman's) children?
Does this "support" carry the different meanings of English? Can it mean a platform supporting weight, supporting someone financially, and supporting someone motivationally?
yes, it bears the same meaning in this case: supporting someone physically, emotionally, politically, supporting weight or structure etc. And it's very common on political or ideological issues as well: אני תומך במפלגה (i support the party) or: הם תומכים בקומוניזם (they are communist, or: they believe in communism; literally: "they support communism").
To me, it's a total mystery why some Hebrew verbs take direct objects and others take prepositions. Some are completely counter-intuitive, like touching "in" something or supporting "in" someone. (ב is used in Hebrew way more than "in" is used in English.) But in truth some of the same absurdities occur in English, where we watch objects but look AT them. You just have to memorize which verbs go with which prepositions in which situations.
Please, somebody that explain us about de use of "ba" without doubt?It looks like a pasive voice.
This question should replace the colloquial "mum" with "mother" when translating "האמא".
Trying to understand the use of -ב here. I feel like an attempt at a literal translation would best illustrate that. Would it be, "The mother supports of the children of hers?" Grammatically wrong, but I know -ב is used for touch, because touching is thought of something done in the object being touched.