Translation:Do you have children?
Normally context will clarify textual ambiguity, but as your example question suggests it is possible context may not help in this case. My thought would be that unless otherwise apparent "¿Tienes hijos?" would be interpreted as meaning "Do you have children?"
If you wanted to ask "Do you have sons?" hopefully context established that intended meaning, but if not, perhaps "¿Tienes hijos varones?" would be used in order to make it clear. I'm not sure though.
It would be good to hear from a native speaker on the matter as there does seem to be a significant potential for "hijos" to be ambiguous.
Hijo = Son.
Hija = Daughter.
Hijas = More than 1 daughter.
Hijos = More than 1 first order descendant, with at least 1 son.
While there is no common phrase that means "Do you have children?", the phrase ”¿Tienes hijos?" fulfills the same purpose.
"No, solo tengo 5 hijas" (No, I only have 5 daughters)
The absolute correct answer for this question is "do you have children?" In real life it would be weird to ask someone if they only have sons, so if you do have children, and someone asks you this question, you would respond with "yes, I have number of girls daughters, and number of boys sons.
No, mija and mijo are contractions of mi hija and mi hijo. They are used in some regions to denote affection, sometimes even to strangers, as long as they are younger than you. I think it's mostly an American thing, so any American speaker out there who wishes to correct me, feel free to do so...
I kind of agree with you -in the UK we always say "do you have any children?" (not to mention the more commonly spoken "have you got any kids"?) but I suppose the literal translation here is "do you have children" they just want to understand that we are translating the correct words from what is written in the question for a language learning perspective, I think we could all debate how we say the actual thing in real life, but the 'actual' word translation is "Do you have children?" (p.s I got it wrong to by putting 'any' in my answer! :-))
Mixed gender groups - two or more masculine and feminine nouns occurring in a mixed group always adopt the masculine plural form: Los padres The parents los niños The children (boys and girls) BBC Spanish Grammar page 21 All so Mis niños My children cómo están los niños, How are the children
If anyone wants a more comprehensible and legible version, here you go:
In Spanish, a group of mixed genders will always use the masculine form. If you have a group of 5 boys and 5 girls, you would use the masculine plural form. If you have a group of 19 boys and 1 girl, you would use the masculine plural form. Even if you had a group of 999 girls and 1 boy, you would use the masculine plural form.
In this case, "hijos" means "children." It could mean "sons," but if you're asking "hey, do you have kids?" it would most likely just mean "children."
Estelle0 When you listen to the Spanish question that is following the smaller letter, etc., one hears "tiene". One only hears the"s" clearly on the end of the word is if you happen to listen to the sentence after the larger and faster figure. I have found this in several words--in fact in several sentences for example "una" meaning one in the slower speaker's words (male speaker) it sounds like "ena". The only way I found this for sure is when hearing a sentence that had to be translated into English and not recognizing "ena" as a word, I listened to the faster sentence (Larger sign) it was very clearly "una". Duo lingo should have someone check this out. and credit should be given in these cases.