"The flower bloomed yesterday."
Why the sudden swich to plain form? It would be very confusing for someone just learning.
plain forms are basic forms of Japanese verb. in casual situations, they can be used instead the formal ます form. there are four kinds of plain form: root form, ない form, た form, and なかった form. they correspond to the non-past affirmative, non-past negative, past affirmative, and past negative tenses. note that the plain form is not exclusive to the casual speech, but can be used for other purposes as well.
here 咲いた (さいた) is the past affirmative た form of 咲く.
Thank you - that is the best explanation of this I've ever seen. It is confusing, although I am realizing that Duolingo is really not supposed to be TEACHING us Japanese - just giving us an avenue with which to practice. The Japanese language should be learned elsewhere I think... but I have never seen plain form before. Thanks again for the help vndnguyen. :)
I think Duo works fairly well, but only if you read most of the comments. Users are very helpful about explaining many of the nuances. If you just tried to work through Duo without "wasting time" on the comments you would get thoroughly lost very quickly. The user collaboration is one of Duo's strengths though. (Of course, some users give erroneous info, and you have to weed that out.) On the whole, I find this model of teaching a language very engaging and surprisingly effective.
I always forget these and get them mixed up with kunakatta and dewa arimasen deshita etc... Which are for the "i" and "na" adjectives, I think?
Did we learn that here, or do I know that from a different app...? I forget.
There is plain form: saita 咲いた . And polite form: sakimashita 咲きました. They both mean the same. Duo has been giving us the polite form in all the sentences til now. I wonder if he gave this one in plain because it just sounds better that way in this particular sentence - a kind of set phrase. I'm just guessing.
It really is confusing sometimes - my advice to anyone with the same issues is to get an app to teach you the Japanese language - and just use Duolingo for practice. I've never seen plain form before, except when my Japanese friends post on facebook - and I always wind up using a translator then because I've only learned the polite way to speak and write...
でした is the past tense form of です, not ました. です, or でした, is not present here because 咲く is a verb, not a noun or an adjective. 咲く would then either take its ます form「咲きました」or its plain form「咲いた」
I actually like the switch so I can get used to different forms especially those that can help me conversationally. Athough, hope they'll add some comments or explanations on each item so I'll have an idea why is it formed that way. Because if no other user provides an explanation, I wouldn't know what this means.
My husband and I both learned Japanese in college, so since we always learned the formal language,we have so much trouble trying to speak conversational japanese with each other
I think you're thinking of さいていました, which is "was/were blooming", the past continuous tense. However, this sense is just asking for the past tense "bloomed", which is さきました or - in plain form - さいた.
It marks you wrong when you use the kanji for kinou, for some reason. I reported it.
6/24/18 it now accepts kanji for kinou! (As well as numerous others. I think there was a massive update a few weeks ago, yay)
昨日花が咲いた is wrong, I just tried it. It only accepted with hiragana in both きのう and さいた
The answer given on the discussion page (this page) isn't the same as the answer given when you get the question wrong. At least it isn't for me. I wonder why that is? I'm shown this as the correct answer: きのう花がさきました。 And at the top of this page this is the answer given, on Oct. 31, 2017: きのう花がさいた。
It depends on the verb how you do it. If it ends with く like かく(書く to write)、あるく(歩く to walk)、きく(聞く to listen, to ask), then you use いた instead. Exception is いく (行く, to go), which becomes いった. If there's a voiced consonant in the last syllable like in のむ (to drink/swallow 飲む)、とぶ (飛ぶ to fly)、しぬ (死ぬ to die), you replace that last syllable with んだ. If it has an s sound like はなす (話す to speak), it'll be した. And then there is the more random guys that take った: つかう(使う to use)、たつ (立つ to stand up)、わかる (to understand) so they become つかった、たった、わかった. These are called the 5dan verbs because they have 5 different stems if you count in hiragana.
There are also 1dan verbs, which are more simple. They include みる (見る to look), たべる (食べる to eat), ねる (寝る to sleep) for which the past tense is only formed by changing る -> た. You can recognize potential 1dan verbs from the ending: they all have iる or eる in the end. There are common verbs that have either one but are in fact the 5dan る ending, like はしる (走る to run), しゃべる (喋る to chat/talk), かえる (帰る, to go/come home).（There are other かえるs too, like 変える (to change sth), that is in fact 1dan verb and the past is かえた.）
Oh, I almost forgot the irregular ones: する (to do) and くる (来る, to come) and their derivatives (キスする to kiss, 愛する to love, etc), that become した and きた.
Almost every answer I tried for this was marked as wrong, despite them all being valid according to other sources. It won't seem to accept the correct kanji for 咲きました。