"How is the child's answer?"
Translation:Câu trả lời của đứa trẻ như thế nào?
I'm confused by your question. Are you asking about the English or the Vietnamese sentence? (I feel the Vietnamese sentence is just a direct translation from the English.) Either way, the "how is" sentence is a broad question type that allows the speaker the freedom to answer as he/she wishes.
như thế nào = how was it
làm sao = what actions were performed [to lead to this conclusion]
eg: "how did you do?" vs "how did you do this?"
One calls for a description of conditions and the other asks for actions taken. You can see that the English sentence given they asks more what the child's answer was like rather than the steps he took to make words come out of his mouth resulting in a reply.
Now, when I throw in the towel and try:
"Đáp án của đứa trẻ như thế nào" (because DL seems to be marking all the 'làm sao' constructions wrong, contrary to what the course notes say) it now says "GOTCHA AGAIN!! WRONG AGAIN!!", the answer should be:
Đáp án của đứa trẻ thì thế nào?
Where'd the 'thì thế nào' come from? Of course, somehow, someway, we are expected to know this.
They give us frustrating sentences for the same reason that they gave us words in the first lesson that are practically tongue twisters for non-Vietnamese (cá, ca, gà). Examples that frustrate the most best illustrate the different concepts being taught. Would you prefer that learners developed a false sense of competence and encountered these frustrating yet common tricky cases in the wild?
If you make learning anything hard, you're not doing it right. You can teach anything--quantum mechanics, multivariate calculus, molecular microspectroscopy, theories of history, music theory, you name it--and make it easy and encourage rather than discourage the students. The way you do this is to 1) break things up into smaller, manageable, digestable chunks and 2) explain WHY things are the way they are at each and every step of the way. Do that, and while some students will pick up things faster than others, they all will learn with time.
Does this course do that? That question can be answered with a clear and emphatic "NO". There is no 'learning by frustration to illustrate concepts" because there is NO TEACHING and thus there can be no concepts being taught. What is done specifically in the caste Hannah mentions is that sometimes it's 'làm sao' and sometimes 'như thế nào' and sometimes (later on in the course) various 'việc thế nào's and 'làm thế nào's not just put at the end, but at the front and in the middle of sentences, thrown at the students randomly. And NONE OF THIS WAS TAUGHT. And because it is not taught, with no guidelines given when where to use one versus another, and none seem apparent by the cases given, it seems like (and is) random torture which leads to frustration.
"Would I prefer that learners get a false sense of competence?"--I think that's a bogus question because any exposure to Vietnamese in the wild--say, just pick up a Vietnamese newspaper--disabuses one of any false confidence quickly. Therefore I don't see that as a problem. But that's also why simply exposure in the wild with any language is an inefficient and poor way to learn it, because it mimics the DL course--random stuff thrown at people without explanation or guidance. Classroom teaching of any subject is, by its very nature, an artificial environment where the material is 'dumbed down' for introduction to the students. I would not expect a student who finished the DL Vietnamese course to be fluent with native speakers any more than I'd expect a student having finished an intro physics course to crank out the Hamiltonian approximations for all the alkali metals. To do that takes much more study and practice.