"What picture will you draw?"
何絵 (nani e) means "which picture" (like there are several pictures in front of you, and you will choose one of them to draw).
何 + noun
何駅で降りますか (Which station will you get off)?
何色が好きですか (Which color do you like)?
何味がお薦めですか (Which flavor do you recommend)?
何の絵 (nan no e) means "what kind of picture".
- what kind; what sort
Maybe saying "what will you draw a picture of?" would make the meaning of the Japanese a little more clear than "what picture will you draw?", but I don't think that 何絵 would be appropriate in this case.
They do give brief explanations for each unit under the light bulb. It is understandable that they can't go in to deep because there is so much to explain. That's why it's nice that we have this feature where we can help each other. Also for detailed explanations apps like Human Japanese are excellent, if you don't mind paying for an app, I highly recommend that one.
Wouldnt that be "which picture" will you draw? More like you have a list of options to draw and someone is asking you which one?
I took なにの to be the standard meaning of "what": 何の野菜。何の建物。What vegetables. What building.
The use of の here threw me off too. Then again I'm still new, and im happy to be wrong, but those are my thoughts.
"You will draw a picture of what?" is the better literal way of translating it, but it's not really a natural English sentence.
For this example, "What kind of picture" isn't really just pulling words out of a hat. The の acts like 'of' in English but in the opposite word direction (何のえ = "A picture of what"). You can ask "What picture will you draw?" or "What kind of picture will you draw?" and they mean almost the same thing.
However, if the example was asking about a movie or something with a title, then "What kind of movie" (どんな映画) would imply asking about the description of the movie, whereas "A movie of what"/"What movie" (何の映画) would imply asking for the title.
You could argue that either way with "What picture are you drawing".
Using 'which' instead of 'what' almost certainly implies you are drawing one of a set of possible pictures. But asking "What picture are you drawing" doesn't necessarily imply that.
"What are you drawing a picture of?" is also a good translation. But I'd say "What picture are you drawing?" is just as valid. They're just nuanced differences in word order
Not in this kind of sentence. Specific acts like drawing something (or eating something, reading something, basically "do something to something else") need the を. は would be used for more general questions. 絵を描きますか。Means "Are you drawing a picture?" while 絵は描きますか。would mean "Do you draw pictures? (at all)". If you want to translate it literally, the は sentence could be translated as "Concerning pictures, do you draw them?"
The mods have said before that they can only do so much about audio files because of Duolingo's software. Developers need to make changes to the way software reads kanji. For now, it picks a certain reading and the mods say that they can't change the reading without deleting and re-entering the word if I remember right.
Maggie-sensei talks about 何か here and maybe it can clear some things up:
The casual form of 何か = なにか ( = nanika ) something / anything
= Nani ka otetsudai dekiru koto wa arimasen ka?
= Is there anything that I can do to help you?
= Nanka tetsudau koto nai?
Note: Since the kanji 何 can be read both なに ( = nani) and なん ( = nan), I will use hiragana from here on out.
= Ima, nanka itta ?
= Did you just say something?
= Nanka atta no?
= Has anything happened?
= What is wrong? / What happened?
= Nani ka taberu mono wa arimasen ka?
= Nanka taberu mono nai?
= Is there anything to eat?
= Kyoutou ni iku kedo, nanka hoshii mono aru?
= I am going to Kyoto. Do you want anything (from there)?
= Asoko ni nanka iru yo.
= There is something over there.
(* いる ( = iru) is for living things but なんか ( = nanka) is rude to use for people. You say 誰か ( = dare ka) )
It's なん here because it's followed by の.
I. If followed by a particle or copula(-da/desu),
-"Nan" before consonant [t], [d], [n]. "Nan-no" "Nan-desu-ka" "Nan-de" "Nan-to" etc.
In this case, when we want to emphasize that we are asking "WHAT," it's ok to pronounce as "Nani."
-"Nani" for all other cases. "Nani-ga" "Nani-wo" "Nani-mo" etc.
II. If followed by a counter(to ask "how many/much"), use "Nan".
"Nan-nin" "Nan-kai" "Nan-dai" "Nan-mai" etc.
III. If followed by a noun(to ask "what ....."), use "Nani."
"Nani-iro(what color)" "Nani-go(what language)"
IV. There are exceptions.
"Nan-youbi(what day of the week)"
I mostly use DuoLingo. (I am also humored that your typo is "dou" which is basically "how is it?") The curriculum itself gives me what is essentially worksheets and a bit of education, and the other users on the forums fill in a lot of the rest. It's kind of like a student-led class. In addition, I take notes in a notebook I keep by me while studying on here, and include new vocabulary and grammatical rules, and especially helpful nuances introduced by other users. However, I also practice listening via various methods, such as watching movies and TV series in Japanese, and getting tips and cultural information from various YouTubers (some are native, some are foreign residents.) Also, the culture is extremely folded into the language, so learning about one can help you with the other quite a bit.
Oh, I forgot to say this, but I also like to talk to myself in Japanese whenever I get the opportunity. So, for example, if I'm feeling sleepy, I may say "nemui..." and if I'm thinking about what I should eat, I may say "ima, nani wo taberu no?" Just little day-to-day things like that.
As for how effective it is, all of these methods combined together work well for me.