Translation:What grade is your older sister in?
ARE YOU INTERESTED IN MY SISTER? No bro, not at all, calm down! SO YOU SAYIN MY SISTER UGLY? No man, your sister is very pretty WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM MY SISTER?
Having lived in Japan, I feel like "What year student is your older sister?" Should be accepted.
We're not teaching English. It should be accepted even if it sounds a little bit unnatural, as long as the meaning is translated properly.
If you're going to have a sour attitude towards people who are trying to justify an argument as to why something is/isn't correct in a polite way, then you shouldn't be on the discussion forums.
... but they're wrong! :o)
... they haven't justified it; and limiting what's accepted to exclude translations which show the student has correctly understood the Japanese, is unhelpful and ultimately negative.
Having lived in England - all my life - I agree (we say "year" not "grade" here).
I suppose technically the meaning is translated correctly, but word order does have an effect in English. In this case, putting the question in normal sentence word order might suggest something like, "Your older sister is in what grade!?" or as if "what" is being used as a placeholder to indicate that the information of what grade she is in is both unknown and unimportant.
remembering the otherwise-unnatural direct transliterations of some of these sentences helps me, and I'm presuming perhaps some other people, remember the Japanese sentence structure better – I find it helpful in other languages too – and should not be "marked down" in every case, IMO. Certainly that's the putative rôle of the "Another correct translation:" prompts. I wish they would offer a more "English (Traditional)" version or two, sometimes, where they currently have some very American-English suggestions, though.
Duolingo should know that prepositions are not something you should end sentences with
You aren't really "from" grades in English. It's much more natural to say you're "in" them.
Nah, I recall hearing "that kid from the first year" (or second, or third ...) when I was a student. I'm old enough to remember them being "forms" too, though.
Still kinda bugs me that the Duo correct translations show prepositions at the end of the sentence, which isn't grammatically correct (even though spoken this way by many).
Correct translation should technically be "In what grade is your older sister?"
Spoken this way by many who speak English fluently and natively, so you should try not to let it bother you because it isn't grammatically incorrect. It's just informal, modern grammar rather than something you unnaturally learned in middle or high school English class.
Most sentences sound the most natural when ended with a preposition, and while some people or some publications might discourage it, I would say it is a good way to improve readability and comprehension. Even when things are grammatically incorrect, writers will make exceptions when it helps a sentence make more sense.
The "no prepositions at the end of a sentence" rule is a leftover from a time when Classical Latin was thought to be the purest and most logical language, and therefore worth emulating. While leaving a preposition at the end of a sentence is a grammatical error in Classical Latin, it is not an error in Modern English, and never should have been seen as such.
As supposedly exemplified by Winston Churchill in the much-cited "This is the sort of English up with which I will not put" [I may have the wording slightly wrong, and I don't care right now, it's the preposition-at-the-end that matters]
That whole preposition thing isn't really true. In Latin grammar you can't end sentences with prepositions, but there isn't really any such rule in English. Some people just think the Latin rule carries over since a lot of English is derived from Latin, but that doesn't necessarily mean that every single one of their grammar rules carries over, too.
More reading / source here: https://blog.oxforddictionaries.com/2011/11/28/grammar-myths-prepositions/
Most Americans and probably other English speakers would not say, "In what grade is your older sister?" That's not a natural sentence in my lifetime. That feels stuffy because it's not only formal but also sounds old-fashioned. Come back down to Earth, why don't you?
We still say "In which year [did X happen]" in pub quizzes, so fairly down-to-earth.
We also don't usually capitalise "Earth" in "down to earth", either, for that matter ;o)
[ edit: "in what year ...?" too ]
Correct grammar is important. We should try and make sure that we use it properly. Just because we may hear one way more often doesn't mean we should adopt that as correct.
What about the people who use reverse courses to practice their English?
I wouldn't expect textbook perfect grammar every time, but I don't think it is unreasonable for DuoLingo to only allow reasonably grammatical English translations and fault you for unnatural or weird phrasing. It is hard enough to think of every proper way to say something in English. If you also try to include every slangy or colloquial way of saying it, there would be no end.
I think the issue is partly that what's considered "reasonably grammatical" isn't always being decided by native speakers.
There's nothing wrong with teaching "correct" English to people learning English.
There is a lot wrong with slapping the wrists of native speakers who in all innocence use their own, common form of things, and someone "practising" English should be willing to learn "colloquial" and "idiomatic" ways to say things (imagine someone "practising their German" who objected to the use of "tchüß" instead of "auf Wiedersehen"). I can't think of an example that's about word order or whatever, but German has stricter rules about such things, especially the position of the verb in the sentence, where English allows more variation.
So あなた means 'you' and あなたの means 'your'? I was under the impression saying 'you' was impolite. Would the sentence commonly be said without あなたの where 'you' is implied as 'I' is so often implied?
Yes, using personal pronouns of any kind is discouraged, including I, you, he/she, they, etc. Typically when a pronoun would be used in English, the subject is dropped in Japanese and simply assumed by context.
However, there are some times when you can't avoid it. When possible, it is better to refer to someone by their name, title, or relationship, rather than using anata. I believe that the same is true when referring to their relations, but a native speaker would be able to answer this question with more authority. I suspect that practice sentences that include "anata" are taught because it makes the correct translation easier to guess, not because it is a common way of speaking.
When it is unclear or necessary, you can use anata or anata no, but it is much less common than in English. And referring to someone by their name when talking to them directly is much more common. It would be weird to say "Is this Frank's bag?" when talking TO Frank in English. But in Japanese, that would be considered more polite than saying "Is this YOUR bag?"
"What year student is your sister" is not accepted. to close to a literal translation?
貴方『あなた』- you (is NOT used often) の - possesive particle ('s) お姉さん『おねえさん』- older sister は - topic particle 何年生『なんねんせい』- what grade です - copula か - "?"
I could be wrong here, but shouldn't the answer be "How old is your sister?" instead of "What year is your sister?"