Had this in my placement test. You can't really know that this is "two" without any context or the kanji ニ. This could mean so many things. I for example tried "at" as one of the functions of the に particle. Sorry if this is out of place in the context of a lesson on numbers.
If it says" write in English", it means writting using English words. Ni isn't an English word. It's the phonetic translation, using a different letter system.
They would have said 'write the transcription".
If you say "ni" you don't talk in English neither. So, you don't write in English.
Yes, "at" shouldn't be a choice here. Since you can't tell from context or kanji, it should try to avoid anything the に particle can get transliterated to like "at", "on", "to"... My guess is that in the Duolingo meta if it asks for a word definition it won't be a particle, it seems to ask that another way, in sentences (the particles make little sense alone, most of them, or its slangy to do so)
My first question in the placement test was to write the translation of に in English. I thought it was trying to determine whether I understood hirigana, and answered "Ni". As mentioned by many before, one can't know that the answer should be "two" without any more context. It's frustrating, because this vague "question" influences where I'll be placed... :/
(I hope this comment is helpful in shaping the course; I appreciate the work that y'all are putting into this valuable endeavor! Thank you for giving me a way to practice my language skills!)
Actually, they don't contain any letters. Kana is a syllabary; someone corrected that to a more accurate writing system in comments for another question, but I don't remember what it is called. However, I agree that 一(いち) having 1 stroke but 2 syllables and 二(に) having 2 strokes but 1 syllable is silly.
ni isn't に in English. It's Romaji, which is the representation of かな in a Roman/Latin based alphabet. English and almost all European languages use Roman/Latin based alphabets. If Romaji was English, it would be spelled nee, because in English the letters "a e i o u" sound like "e i ai o yu" in every other Latin based language I have seen (I hope that makes sense to someone). Not familiar enough with the history to say it as a fact, but since Portugal had visitors to Japan before other Europeans, Romaji is probably based more on Portuguese than any other alphabet.
hiraganas are used more often, but it is both still essential because: hiraganas are used for the original words from Japan itself like: てんぷら (tempura) meanwhile katakanas are used for adapted languages like: マクドナルド (makudonarudo which comes from the word "mcdonalds") so I think, yes you would need to learn both in order to be able to understand the language, though kanjis are also often used in a sentence so you would definitely need to learn that as well
Anybody fluently speaking japanese here? Because I don't know: When do you write a word in kanji and when in Hiragana? Are all words written in Kanji and these in Hiragana are exceptions? Or can chose how you want to write it? Should I learn the words in both or just in Kanji? Are there words you can only write in Hiragana?
If there are Kanji that make a word, and you know the Kanji, use Kanji. Most numbers nowadays are written using the Arabic numerals. Hiragana is usually reserved for grammar, but there are exceptions. Child, or 子ども, is one. There are 2 Kanji in the word, but the 2nd doesn't have a meaning in this word so it is usually written 子ども or こども.
You answer "Ni" only if a TRANSLITERATION is asked. "Two" isthe correct answer because it's the TRANSLATION lf the character "に", not the transliteration called romaji.
I don't get why people get stuck here. There are going to be stuff way more annoying than this later on, you'll see...
Almost all nouns, adjectives and verbs are written in kanji. Mainly only grammar pieces like particles and conjugations use hiragana, and a few set expressions; but you'll also see hiragana used for furigana - the small characters that show how a kanji is pronounced. Most children's books are written in hiragana as well since they won't know many if any kanji and will spend their entire school lives learning them.
These skills are to teach you the hiragana so they give you some simple words written in hiragana, much like a children's book would use. If you wanted words that are always to be written in hiragana only it would be throwing random untranslatable verb/adjective endings, particles and entire phrases at absolute beginners. (Last I knew though "to" was also acceptable for に here. It is convenient that both English and Japanese have "two/to" and 二・に as homophones.)
There are only about five lessons per skill. Each crown is the same material, just the higher crowns give you more typing and listening exercises while the lower crowns are mainly matching. It is not necessary to go all the way to 5 crowns before moving on to the next skill. The next skill unlocks after finishing your first crown so if you are familiar with the material and no longer find it challenging you can move on any time you want to. You can return to past skills and complete more crowns in them whenever you start to feel you need to strengthen them and refresh your memory.
im kinda confused, does this not mean "two" i wrote it down as a number and the pronunciation. im barely starting to learn japanese. so does it not mean "two" or does it but depending on the context it an mean several things like "two", "to", "at", "in" etc from what im seeing here?.
Yes, it means both :)
It is the pronunciation of 二 (which is the kanji for 2)
It is also a particle, which are grammatical pieces used for marking the function of a word in a sentence. に as a particle marks a specific location/destination or time which we roughly translate to "to/at/in" in English.
Japanese doesn't have very many syllables compared to most other languages, so it is full of homophones. When spoken the meaning would depend on context. In writing the kanji you will learn later on will make the meaning clearer.
(All these homophones are also great for making puns and tongue twisters)
"In Mr. Niwa's garden, two chickens suddenly ate a crocodile" 丹羽の庭には二羽鶏俄にワニを食べた 丹羽の - Mr Niwa's 庭 - Garden には - In 二羽鶏 - Two chickens 俄に - suddenly ワニ - crocodile を食べた - ate
but in hiragana these meanings are far less clear:
niwano niwa ni wa niwa niwatori niwakani wani o tabeta
"ni" is the pronunciation for the word meaning "two", but this specific hiragana itself is very versatile.
Word order in Japanese is not as strict as it is in English, so these short grammar pieces called particles are used to mark the function each word plays in a sentence. There are many different particles. There is a particle for the object of a sentence, one to mark a utensil or material something uses and the place where an action takes place, to mark the subject and topic of a sentence, to mark a direction of movement, etc.
に is a particle used to mark a set point in time and space. It works like the "on" in the phrase "On the desk", the "In" in "In the garden", the "to" in "I go to the store" and the "at" in "At 5:00"
You will start being introduced to particles and sentence structure more in the Intro sections onward. Don't stress out too much about them right now; just focus on learning the basic writing systems and some vocabulary to work with first.
Just know that if Duo suggests an alternative answer as "in/at/on" for に, there is a reason for it, it is not an error.