Translation:Middle school students
Duolingo actually confuses itself by not using kanji. 立ち(tachi) comes from 立つ(tatsu), meaning "to stand", but the "tachi" in 中学生たち is 達, which pluralizes the noun. If Duolingo used kanji, they would never tell you that 達 means "stand", because it doesn't. Without kanji, たち could have either meaning depending on syntax and context (two things Duo's tips don't recognize often enough).
Yes, and no. I agree with you that Duo's tips are often confusing and even misleading because they don't account for context, but 達 is very seldom written in kanji. So in this case, they've done the right thing. The confusion does stem from them not using kanji with 立つ though.
I disagree that the kana is confusing - you would not confuse the suffix ～達 with the verb 立ちます. One is a suffix attached to the end of certain nouns (humans and animals) and the other is a verb. Take this sentence for instance 学生たちは たちました - there's no way you'd confuse the tachi attached to the end of gakusei with the tachi of the verb tachimasu. What I do agree with however is how Duo tips mixes up homonyms and often tells you the wrong meaning - that is definitely annoying. Not sure what can be done about that. I'm thinking it would be difficult to create a program to instinctively know which homonym is supposed to mean what. Maybe it would be possible using the context of the sentence and whether it is attached to a noun or is a verb.
I agree, but I would like to clarify that they aren't homonyms, they're homophones.
homonym (same name) : words that are spelt the same but pronounced differently
homophone (same sound) : words that are pronounced the same but spelt differently
Not that it matters, I just like pointing stuff like this out :p [2019/03/22]
犬 isn't used because that is the kanji for いぬ, whereas ワンちゃん is a slang/informal term for dog based on the sound of the dog's bark. In Japan the sound of a dog's bark is ワン!ワン! (in English it is woof! woof! or arf!). Hence ワンちゃん is another, less formal way of saying dog, arguably like saying doggie in English.
That's an interesting question! I believe Japanese doesn't explicitly have clusivity, as in the inclusive and exclusive "we" doesn't have different forms, but it can sometimes be easily (and strongly) implied by word choice. For example: the exclusive and inclusive words for "our company" are 当社 (とうしゃ) and 我社 (わがしゃ), respectively.
It can also be implied through the use of keigo, with verb being changed to the kenjougo, or humble, form for the exclusive case and the sonkeigo, or respectful, form for the inclusive case.
Honestly though I find this quite difficult because where I'm from, elementary school is primary school and Middle school is secondary school. We have junior college and college (also known as university) but can't translate accurately sometimes because im not sure if 高学 means high school or university. And what is 大学? If that's university, why is it that duolingo had once said that 高学 meant that??
I think you're getting mixed up with 高校（こうこう) which means High school. That I have seen Duolingo has never had 高学 - even when I type it in with my Japanese keyboard it doesn't suggest these two kanji together which is probably a clue that they don't go together or that this is not a word. 大学（だいがく means university. I'm not sure where you live but I'm guessing that Japanese middle school is probably years 7-9. Here in NZ we have Primary school - this goes up to year 6 and then Intermediate years 7 and 8 (although sometimes Primary schools go up to year 8) and then High school is years 9-13.
中学生たち is not incorrect, you we could say 中学生たち describing junior high school students and middle school students. You may also say 彼らは中学生when you say they are junior high school students. It is that you do not always have to say 中学生たち just because 中学生たち are plural in English. In Japanese there are many cases plural things and persons are not so strict to be plural forms as you can say "私たちは中学生" saying "We are students."
You're probably getting confused because the 'g' sound in Japanese is more like a nasal 'ng' sound. Lots of sounds from other languages don't look how they are spelt in English. It's usually because we don't have an equivalent sound in English and the person transcribing the language into English has done their best to convey the sound in the nearest sounding equivalent in English - does this make sense? Another example of this is the v sound in voy a comprar for instance (Spanish). It's more like a sound in between the English v and b sound but closer to b, but you can't really convey that with the English alphabet.
Thanks for your explanation...actually my native language (Cantonese) does have the consonant /ng/ so I can hear that in this context it sounds more like ng...so I am wondering if there are instances when the /g/ sound does sound more like /g/? (sorry if this sounds confusing)
I guess it depends where you're from and what flavo(u)r of English you use.
I'm Australian and to me, "secondary school" describes any schooling after primary/elementary school but before university, i.e. grades 8-12, while "middle school" are only the first three years after primary/elementary school, i.e. grades 7-9 in a K-12 school.
It can only be used with people (or casually with things that you may personify, like animals)
And it is less 'plural' exactly than it is noting a specific group, like say "and company"
学生 can be one student or many students, both singular and plural, but 学生たち is a group of students "a student and others"
私 - I/me 私たち - 'We' (myself and company)
It can also be added to a person's name to note that person and their in-group
田中達 - Tanaka (and Tanaka's company/friends/family)
So you would use the normal noun in most cases to talk about plural (in general) and the -tachi form when referring to a certain group
中学生is a junior high school student.I remember 中学生is translated as a middle school student.中学生is pronounced as “chuugakusei” or “ちゅうがくせい” 中学生たちare junior high school students.They are pronounced as “chuugakusei tachi”.
子供Kodomo is a child. 子供たちkodomotachi is children. 動物Dohbutsu is an animal. 動物たちdohbutsu tachi are animals which are prural.
It's difficult to compare since the system varies so much in the UK I'm not sure what exactly to compare it to. From what i'm seeing "infant" and "junior" both fit into the primary school ages though (under 10) which would be 小学校
It also appears the three-tier system with a middle school does exist in certain parts of England as well though the ages are much younger than Japan; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three-tier_education
It's not really about learning the American system in this case as 中学校 literally means "中 middle 学校 school" and the grading system in Japan is different to that in the American system though they share more similarities.
小学校 lit. "small school" (translated as 'elementary' or 'primary school') is grades 1-6 and is from age 6-12
中学校 "middle school" (compared to 'junior high/lower-secondary') is grades 1-3 (year 7-9) and is from age 12-15
高校 "high school" (compared to senior high/upper-secondary) is grades 1-3 (year 10-12) and is from age 15-18
I'm not one of those down-voters Gabe, but reading Ana's post, I can see why people might.
First of all, let me say that I agree with her opinion that it's odd to introduce たち at this stage of the course. I, like her, did not come here to learn but rather was simply curious about the approach Duo would take (and how far they could go), and have found it quite odd indeed.
However, at least in my experience, to say that the -たち suffix is rarely used is a bit of an exaggeration, which seems somewhat hypocritical for someone who is concerned with people getting the wrong idea about the word's frequency. Perhaps it is used more frequently in a school setting, which I am more familiar with, but it is by no means "rare" in my opinion.
I also don't understand what she means by "obsolete since verb endings don't indicate person". To my knowledge, "obsolete" means "serving no additional purpose". Clearly, たち does what verb endings do not and therefore it is definitionally not obsolete, though her argument seems to be that Japanese people tend not to specify person thus rendering たち obsolete? I would say that the utility of たち is independent of verb endings (and associated subject/person assumptions) since it is appended to nouns, which can behave as the object, complement, target, etc.
Like I said in my comment,
in my experience, to say that the -たち suffix is rarely used is a bit of an exaggeration
("In my experience", by the way, means two years living and working in Japan, six years dating and being married to a Japanese native speaker, and about five of those years being mistaken for a native Japanese speaker (because of my Asian heritage and Japanese ability) by every Japanese person I've met - they often don't realise until I've introduced myself by name or the topic of one's hometown comes up.)
But in case you don't believe me, I've found this definition which includes this note about its usage:
Which makes no mention of its supposed rarity. Rather, it says that it was used honorifically in the past, but nowadays it's just normal and something you don't use for people deserving of respect.
You're right that -たち is used when referring to a specific group, but that rarely happens, right? *sarcasm*
It must be because they're all such てんさい when it comes to 日本語 Gabe-LeMec. I'm afraid like with many things online the same applies here - Don't read the comments! ;) Bunch of people spouting stuff about something they know nothing about. Or perhaps it's my 873 lingots?? :P
I just read all 75 comments (so far, in this exercise), and have my own question! As someone who was raised learning Chinese and English, I have become habituated with the Chinese meanings of Kanji.
学生: "student"; gakkusei; same meaning in Chinese 大学生: "university student"; daigakkusei; same meaning in Chinese 小学生: "elementary/primary school student"; what's the romaji?; same meaning in Chinese 中学生: I just learned this means "middle/junior high school student" in Japanese; What's the romaji?; Chinese meaning is "high school student"
How do you say "high school student" in Japanese -- is it 高学生?
I just read all comments so far, and have a question! As someone who was raised learning Chinese and English, I have become habituated with the Chinese meanings of Kanji.
学生: "student"; gakkusei; same meaning in Chinese 大学生: "university student"; daigakkusei; same meaning in Chinese 小学生: "elementary/primary school student"; what's the romaji?; same meaning in Chinese
中学生: I just learned this means "middle/junior high school student" in Japanese; What's the romaji?; Chinese meaning is "high school student"
How do you say "high school student" in Japanese? Is it 高学生?