how can one tell whether Sie sind is you or they, if the rest of the sentence doesnt make it clear?
the formal Sie is always capitalized, but if it is at the beginning of a sentence also the normal sie (i mean they) is capitalized so grammatically you can't tell the difference. The same is true for spoken language. You can't speak capitalized ;-)
However, you use the the formal (and the unformal) you to address another person directly. This makes it usually quite obvious when there is direct speech an in real life sentences you often have objects and additional words which help.
In this particular sentence: You don't address children formally. That leaves us that you go to a group of people and say "You are children" in a sense like "You are childish", but then I would use a comparison "Sie sind wie Kinder" (You are like children) and still the sentence would sound quite artificial. Generally the they-interpretation makes much more sense and sounds more natural.
sie does mean she but also means they as well. When we are looking at dative pronouns, we have ich (I), du(you), er/sie /es (he/she/ it) wir (we), ihr (you) and sie (to mean they which is the plural of he/she/it) and Sie (you-formal.)
Still a beginner though, correct me if I am wrong :)
wouldn't this be "Ihr seid Kinder," 'Ihr' and 'seid' being the second-person plural? I would think "Sie sind Kinder" translates to "they are children."
EDIT: Why does the header of this thread translate it differently from the exercise? How are both correct?
same question here too.i googled it and it says seid for plural but here it says sind
"Ihr seid Kinder" would be informal, while "Sie sind Kinder" is formal. A little weird to use the formal "you" with children, but acceptable :)
The male speaker here pronounces Kinder with a "d" sound. The female speaker pronunces Kind with a "t" sound (Kint). Are they unfortunately saying it different and one is correct and the other is not? Or is the "d" pronounced differently when the word is singular compared to plural? Thank you.
Voiced consonants get devoiced at the end of a word in German -- that means that /b d g v z/ sounds turn into /p t k f s/.
Thus "Kind" sounds like "Kint" -- but in the word "Kinder", the -d- is not at the end any more and so it does not turn into a /t/ sound.
(This fact is used to teach German children which letter to use when spelling a /p t k f s/ sound at the end of a word: turn it into the plural, for nouns, or the comparative, for adjectives, and see whether the sound changes into /b d g v s/; if so, that's the letter you need. For example, "der Rat" and "das Rad" sound identical, but in the plural, you can hear the difference between "die Räte" with /t/ and "die Räder" with /d/. Therefore "das Rad" has to be spelled with a d at the end.)
I am confused. Does not sie mean she?? how can i know when it will be she/they??
Look at the verb.
If sie means "she", the verb will usually end in -t: sie isst, sie hat, sie gibt, sie liest, ...
If sie means "they", the verb will usually end in -en: sie essen, sie haben, sie geben, sie lesen, ...
(sein "to be" is an irregular verb -- there, the "they" form is sie sind.)
Those mean two different things.
Sie sind Kinder. = “They are children.” (Refers back to some people you had spoken about previously, using the personal pronoun “sie”. Since it’s plural, the gender is irrelevant.)
Das sind Kinder. = “Those are children.”; Dies sind Kinder. = “These are children.” (Introduces the children as a new topic of discussion using the demonstrative pronouns das/dies, which are always neuter singular in this construction regardless of the gender and number of what you are introducing — even for a plural noun such as Kinder.)