"他是老师。"

Translation:He is a teacher.

December 2, 2017

90 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PauloO93

Since this is a "Type what you hear" exercise - and the audio plays "tā shì lǎoshī" - shouldn't 她是老师 be accepted as a correct answer as well? And how can we differentiate between he and she when we're speaking?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BafouillCharabia

Yes, in the "type what you hear", it should be accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LazyEinstein

In the "type what you hear" section, allowing both 她/他 makes sense.

My options were 他 and 她们. This shows me that they want you to think about your answer.

If one is typing versus using the bubble selection and the gender is unknown, defaulting with 他/他们 is what one should do if the gender is not specified.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LinaKarolina2022

Ta is for she nad he


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/agentfoo

Isn't Mandarin a gender neutral language?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ErikCLO

If you hear the sentence 他是老师 out of context, there's no way you can tell if the teacher is male or female cause it's pretty much the same word and tone (tā). On the other hand, when you read the characters, the pronoun changes from 他 (he) to 她 (she)... but it's not really gender related cause 它 (it) is also the same word and tone "tā".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZedGama3

I'm new to mandarin, but i believe that 他 is the male form and 她 is the female form, yet they both sound the same.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CarlosReye436543

I said she is a teacher, what did I do wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ren-MSAAsh

In chinese, at least how I learned, you have to specify that she is one teacher, not just that she is teacher. I’m not sure if you can leave the specification out tho


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

In the example at the top of this discussion, the character is the male form of the sound "ta". So you need to use "He is a teacher" If your exercise was only hearing (and no characters) then either he or she would be correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JerryHairyBerry

For anyone coming here confused about he/she/it, they're all the same in Mandarin, no way to tell, and it's not the only language like that, Persian(Farsi) has that too, او means both he/she, (though "it" has it's own word) Idk any other language that does that, but I'm willing to bet those aren't the only two, and yes, even native speakers don't know if "ta" is a female or male, (not a native speakers, but same situation in Farsi)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BafouillCharabia

Are you a Farsi native speaker ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ne_cede_malis

Finnish is among them... 'hän' is used for both 'he' and 'she' while 'se' is 'it'. It's among the languages without a grammatical gender (that is, nouns don't have an implied gender). The Finno-Ugric family (including Hungarian) and Basque are different language families from other European languages -- all others being Indo-European.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Maxmud18

Hey it doesnt matter what i will write he or she its the same!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sonyeee0

When you click on the lightbulb to learn more it tells you that tā is non gender based. It even says that when you click on the Pinyin. You should get 'he' or 'she' as the right answer


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

Yes that is true of the sound, the verbal ta. However the sight, the character that you write on a page can be written as either he or she depending on the first part of the character being man or woman.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/captainclutch281

她是老师 should also be accepted since they sound identical, but there's no option under "report" for this


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ren-MSAAsh

This literally translates to he is teacher. If the translation is: he is A teacher, then the Chinese should be 他是一个老师,because as it is, 他是老师 means he is teacher, so I was correct


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

To make a complete sentence in English, you need the article "a," so no, can't be correct. Translation between languages does not work in a word-by-word or type-by-type manner, because languages have different characteristics and it is not possible most of the times to translate exactly the same meaning. The baseline is, the translated text has to be gramatically correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/migueljuradomj

We can use both he or she


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BafouillCharabia

Pay attention to the characters :

他 = he

她 = she

它 = it

All are pronounced the same way.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaulaMead

thank you so much


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JackSmith

I guess they ran out of different pronunciations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/glucoseparent

Fun fact for new learners: the Chinese writing system only started to adopt gendered third person pronouns: 他/她 in the 20th century, which is why both 他/她 sound exactly the same (because they were the same). When referring to a third person whose gender is unknown, use 他。


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

Can someone explain: Do you need both lao and shi to mean teacher? Does either one of those mean anything on its own or do they only work as a word when they are together? Thanks


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/roman2095

I don't really know, but I just tried to translate them individually on this site http://www.systranet.com/translate/ and 老 translated as "old" and 师 was translated as "teachers", and 老师 was translated as "teacher". So the characters do mean something on their own, but I think it would be best to use both to mean "teacher" if that is what Duo is teaching.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

thank you, I so appreciate your responding. Its hard to learn the Chinese when no meanings are attached and I seem to need the meaning for my brain to remember any of it. Not sure why duo is not including any meanings. So thank you very much.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BafouillCharabia

Duolingo is good to exercise. But if you really want to learn chinese, try to find also some good other sources (youtube for example). I also speak with natives (by conversationexchange), so I can get real feedbacks.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/finny131682

Its more of a compound word. lao means experienced old aged other words like "lao ren" means elderly aka old person. Shi means teacher or specialist, and has some military connotation by itself. The two characters together specifies an educational teacher.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/glucoseparent

Native Mandarin speaker here. 老师 means teacher (and you do need both 老 & 师 to mean teacher). However, a person with a specific craft usually ends with a ”师“. A lecturer in college, for example, is called a 讲师, a master is called a shi1 fu4 (师傅).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vlad647037

Please help me! When '他' means (she) and when (he). For example I couldn't know from a sentence which one is right. Or is the symbol different?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/finny131682

The easiest way to remember is the first vase like charcter 女 in 她 Means female. Many basic characters are derived from pictures so the woman character looks like a stick figure woman .


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vlad647037

I found it. Yeah the symbol is different... I'm sorry for stupid question, my bad.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BafouillCharabia

That happens sometimes ! Lol !


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SerentityDestiny

What? The chinese, isnt he and she the same?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

ITs the same sound but a different character.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JackSmith

Is Ta for He and She different in Chinese characters?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

Yes, it didn't used to be but it is now. He starts with the character for man, she starts with the character for woman. Read the comment above.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brian761115

Make up your mind! I've responded with "He" and "she" and keep getting my answer rejected.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Umaima854853

I am from pakistan and my native language is urdu why urdu is not on duolingo??


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/640.ZiadR6CTM36E

This is no fair, tā is both male and female


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/emercloherty

why is it "a" teacher, and not "the teacher". In this lesson you have used "the teacher' when there is no "yi ge". for "a" teacher you have used "yi ge". A bit of consistency in this course might make it easier for us to learn this language.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

There is no direct word for "the" in Chinese. In general if the word is the subject of a sentence, you translate with "the [noun]" but if it is placed at other places in the sentence, it is indefinite and you translate with "a/an [noun]" or plural form. If you need "the" in case the noun is not a subject, you normally need a definite modifier 他是这个老师。"He is the/this teacher."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cucubananas00

in chinese there is not a difference between "he" or "she", si its ok to put both of them, this is wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

The character is different 他=he 她=she.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

There is not a difference in the SOUND but there is quite a difference in the CHARACTER. See Keith's post.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue950221

It can also mean "He is the teacher."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CurtisD.Mo

"He is teacher teacher"?????


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gaphtape

'he is a teacher' should be the same as 'he is the teacher'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue950221

Can't this be translated: He is the teacher?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ManhLe869866

what about "ta- shiyi ge la~o shi-" ? I am a bit confused


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

It is the same, 一个 can be omitted because it is implicit and clear. On the other hand, in English it is required to have the article "a."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hardy537511

can u pls dont correct my english its disgusting course you guys have basically no clue and i dont want to make my owl a cry face just becourse you have no clue if u correct right sentences stop that u do that in loop and write literally the same thing as i did


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Abe1029

...Ok then.

( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RayJohnAlo

I chose she is a teacher. In other instances of 他是, my answer would be correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

Unless I'm missing something, the first character is now understood to be masculine as its left half is the character for "man". Even though Mandarin may not have had gender in the past, at present, the first character would need to have the left half be the character for "woman" in order to translate as "she".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cheeze189073

When writing, you can differenciate between female and male but I don't know how to you could tell when hearing it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

Can only know by context in conversations


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/richard.57

For the listening version, is there any reason why "她是老师" should be rejected? Is there some difference between the pronunciation of 她 and 他?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KWELIWON

What is the difference between she and he in Chinese characters


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

She is made with the radical for woman on the left; he is made with the radical for man on the left. You can see the "he" character at the top of this discussion. You can see the "she" character just above your question in richard.fern57's comment.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SoniLohdz

Gee!!! I'm a latin girl trying to learn chinesse language; but it's very confuse to hear the same sounds with diferent meaning. But i'm not going to quit. Chaio!!!✊


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JongwonKIM10

there's something wrong with this site. many times i write correct answers, i got wrong. this site isn't helpful.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TGisBB

How can i tell he (ta) from she (ta)???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

only by the look, it is the same sound


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TGisBB

I cannot tell difference between he and she when listening!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GryTea

They sound the same in Chinese.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AveryCrow07

I THINK that by default its he, bc in the questions where you select words to make sentences, its always he? I would try she and see what happens, though


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AveryCrow07

Im slightly unsure as to why, by default, 'tā' means he, as we learnt that it can be she as well. We should be learning about she and he, to secure our knowledge


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GryTea

By default, 他 is gender-neutral, although the probability it's "he" is usually higher. Please check my post to learn more about 3rd-person singular pronouns in modern Chinese: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/25690890?comment_id=37429005


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Karuna8063

The sound "ta" is both he and she. The character that you see is very different. IF you are saying "he" then the first character means "man"; likewise for "she" the first part of the character means "woman". So you can only distinguish it by sight, not by sound.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GryTea

If 他 is used, one can't know whether it's "he" or "she" without additional info. 她 is always "she," though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

I think it is a common practice in Taiwan that 他 can refer to any gender. In Hong Kong for example, it is stricter that 他 is almost always referring to a male person.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GryTea

There are indeed regional usage differences. I often like to mention 他's "she" usage as it's pretty useful for writing a novel with a character whose gender hasn't been revealed :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dalina00

But she must be acceptable too


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Abe1029

tahw she law she


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fran232586

他是老师= he is teacher 他是一个老师= he is a teacher


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KeithWong9

No, you cannot leave out the article in English because the grammar would be incorrect.

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