"Is her name Mara?"
Translation:mara 'oH'a' pongDaj'e'?
This first Skill (that's what the "lessons" are called in Duolingo) simply introduces you to some basic sentences to memorize. As you go along the Tips & Notes introduce more and more of the grammar so you can understand how these sentences are put together. The Tips & Notes for this first Skill does have a brief note about Word Order.
Duolingo has hidden the Tips & Notes so I want to make sure you know about them and where to find them. I would like to ask that you review those Tips & Notes so we don’t have to continuously repeat the information that we have explained there.
If you are doing the course on iOS or Android, you cannot currently access the Tips & Notes through the app. To access the Tips & Notes, you will have to access the course using a web browser at https://www.duolingo.com/. You can still do it on your mobile device, but you will have to use the web browser instead of the app (or you can do it from a computer). When you click on a Skill, it will expand to reveal a Start button, a key, and a light bulb.
If you click on the light bulb it will reveal the Tips & Notes and give you a detailed explanation of the grammar that is introduced in that Skill. If you have questions after reading the Tips & Notes for any Skills, then please return to the forum to ask your question, explaining what you didn’t understand or what seems contradictory to you.
The -'e' suffix goes on nouns and often marks emphasis, focus, or topic. In most cases it is completely optional and can go on either the object or the subject. However, when using a pronoun as the verb "to be" ('oH in this case), there is a grammatical rule that says if you state the subject that the pronoun is referring to (pongDaj in this case) them you must mark it with -'e':
mara 'oH'a' "Is it Mara?"
mara 'oH'a' pongDaj'e' "Is her name Mara?"
The interrogative -'a' goes on the verb and this syllable means something different on nouns. When using the interrogative verbal -'a', it does not go at the end of the sentence, but rather a the end of the verb (which is often in the middle of the sentence). Notice that there is an -'a' on 'oH which is acting like a verb in this sentence. This sentence is written correctly.