"A dog is walking."
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Truly since this is the first set of lessons 1) EVERYTHING should get sound pronunciations 2) Nothing in the hints said female or male dog. Personally I think too much is being introduced in the first lessons without more simple practice lessons and like it is here phonetic helps. I think these should be incorporated in the hints or under the letters in Hebrew. I am a total beginner and have sought out other apps just to familiarize myself with the Hebrew letters but to begin nuancing at this stage seems a bit much. In English we started out with simple repetition: see spot, see spot run, see spot jump etc. Since the alphabet is so different like Chinese etc it would be helpful to start more slowly or have a PRE LEARN HEBREW set of lessons. For those that don't need it they can test out or fly through the simple stuff. But after this comment I want to reemphasize my sincere appreciation of the grandness and greatness of Duo!
Totally agree with you! I'm doing Chinese as well on Duo and paradoxically the learning curve at the beginning is way less steep than for Hebrew. I had to do a few courses of Hebrew outside Duo before I could come back and actually start here, which is what is probably discouraging a lot of total newbies in Hebrew.
What is missing: 1. explaining the alphabet with drill exercices letter by letter (making us matching sounds with large images of the letters; final consonants with their regular equivalent, etc) Possibly also making us matching block letters with cursive letters as they are VERY different and you will need cursive letters if you ever want to take notes or write sth in Hebrew.
- Provide audio for every word of the word bank and audio or romanization whenever we hover over a word in an exercise. From the 3rd or 4th skill on the course becomes really very interesting. With a little bit of background I'm having a lot of fun now. Just a pity that it's the only course that is not aimed at absolute beginners.
This be said, thanks a lot for creating this course and for the interesting comments that are being added along the way.
Hebrew does teach letters - they are in the tips and notes of the first three skills named "letters 1, 2 and 3".
Hebrew course was made more than four years ago, when the platform was much different and teaching individual letters in the way that Chinese or Japanese does it was not possible. Duolingo platform has since been upgraded and made this possible. Hebrew team is working on a new tree, which will teach the letters in a new way. Duolingo can never be the only place to learn languages. It's just too limited. So, using other resources is always a good idea. There are literally dozens and dozens of apps, websites or youtube videos that can serve as additional resources.
Another problem is that Hebrew doesn't have a good Text-To-Speech program, so all the sentences needed to be recorded by voice actors, which means two things - recordings can't be slowed down, because the recordings will get distorted, and you can't hear individual words, because you can't cut them out from the recorded sentences.
As far as the transcription into Latin letters goes, that is not going to happen, as the Hebrew team stated, because teaching Hebrew in Latin letters might help you in the very beginning, but it will be a bad thing in the long run. It's always best to get "plunged in" the deep end start with the Hebrew letters right away - that way you'll get used to them faster. There are several users who are transcribing sentences in the comment section and writing down how each of the sentences sounds like - that's a great idea and they're doing a great job. Also, I am not sure if it is possible to do it, programming-wise, or if Duo is at all interested in doing this.
For the missing audio, there is a Memrise course made by one of the Duolingo course creators that has all the words, with audio: https://www.memrise.com/course/1031737/hebrew-duolingo/
That's like asking if you can say "people" for women. Of course you can and in most situations it is actually preferable to do so, as "bitch" is considered an offensive word. "dog" is the default word for the animal, regardless of the gender. Only if you want to stress that it is a female, you'd call it a "bitch".