Hello, I am just looking for some tips on Spanish. I have realized that while learning Spanish, of course there are sentences that do not sync with the English sentence. Such as, "the red dog," if translated into Spanish it would be "el perro rojo." So in English it would be "the dog red". Why is this? And do you have any tips on remembering such sentences?
I took Spanish in high school, and my teacher was from Ecuador. She said that Spanish is much more sensible than English in this regard, because when someone is telling you a story, all the adjectives come first and you still have no idea what they are talking about until they get to the end.
There was a big, white, rambling.... what? A dog? A house? A line of trees?
In Spanish you start with the noun, so you know what you're talking about, and then you refine it with the descriptive adjectives.
I have to admit, she had a point.
You basically need to remember that in english we usually say the adjective then the noun (the red dog) In spanish it is usually the reverse, noun then adjective. Also the adjective follows the gender of the noun and the pluralization of the noun, and so does the article...
The green shirt - la camisa verde
The green shirts - las camisas verdes
The red dog - el perro rojo - la perra roja
The red dogs - los perros rojos - las perras rojas
Colors are easy, but it gets complicated because there are are many words that are adjectives that we may not notice as adjectives, and some adjectives can, or must, come before noun. This dog = este pero, for example. You may want to bookmark wwww.studyspanish.com, my go to site for basic grammar questions.
I have to agree with rspreng. Here are some key grammar topics of study there....
http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/serest1.htm (ser vs estar)
http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/persa.htm (The personal A)
http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/oppro.htm (Object Pronouns)
http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/porpara.htm (Por vs Para)
also, find the grammar lesson "Verbs Like Gustar"
That is just the way it is, and you simply have to learn it. Some adjectives go after the noun, and some don't.
I know you asked for help with syntax specifically, but my advice has to do with how best to use Duolingo to learn any of these tricky grammar issues. Because, what you will likely find is that Duolingo is great for practicing one's chosen language, but it doesn't really explain, or teach, the language. At least not in the way that a teacher would teach it.
Think of it this way: When you are in a Spanish class in school, the teacher does not just tell you which words, parts of speech, or concepts will be on the test and then give you the test and consider that the lesson. No. First they tell the class what the next unit is going to entail, and then they explain what the vocabulary words mean, their parts of speech, and how they are used in sentences. Then they do some practice sentences, and then they give the test.
Duolingo skips right to the practice sentences and the test.
For that reason, I highly recommend looking at the words, parts of speech, or concepts that each Duolingo lesson entails, and first watching some YouTube videos concerning said words and concepts. My favorite Spanish learning channels on YouTube are 'Spanish Is Your Amigo', 'Senor Jordan', and 'Butterfly Spanish'.
Spanish Is Your Amigo - hands down, the BEST channel on YouTube for concise explanations of even the trickiest grammar and usage issues. This girl knows her stuff and, better yet, she knows how to teach it to others. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCo-RvwhxxALIGAJVvqkyNaQ
Senor Jordan - great for all of the example sentences he walks his viewers through https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3I2scc15jBct61vlxt3zcw
Butterfly Spanish - I think everyone has a crush on this girl, she's quite charming https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9yudInUYzMh9H4gJs4DrHg
Aside from that, I would also recommend doing Memrise, Lingua.ly, and Anki, and finding a handful of language exchange partners to chat with and study with, in person or on Skype. And, of course, keep up a streak on Duolingo!
Buena Suerte! Here are a few lingots to get you started on your journey.