"Wij praatten over het bos."
Translation:We talked about the forest.
When soeaking with native Dutch people is there any obvious difference between "pratten" and "praatten" (talk and talked)?
Hi there! No, praten and praatten sound exactly the same when spoken. You have to hear it in context to understand if the person is speaking in the present or past tense.
It's a little like the english words "bet" or "quit".
For example: I bet you (didn't hear me just now) vs. I bet you (yesterday you wouldn't do it); or I quit smoking (starting today) vs. I quit smoking (yesterday).
The advantage in Dutch is that in the written form there is no misunderstanding of when the "talking/speaking" takes place, since the conjugated forms of praten have different spellings. For example:
"Wij praten met de ouders" -- We are talking with the parents "Wij praatten met de ouders" -- We talked with the parents
Though they both sound exactly the same when spoken.
Hope this helps.
I put "We talked about the wood", and Duolingo told me I should have put "woods". If the singular "forest" is correct, why does "wood" (in the sense of a collection of trees) have to be plural?
I agree - 'wood' in the singular for me is the natural term for a collection of trees, much more natural than 'forest' (also from the UK)