No, that doesn't work. cooking in English is a participle and refers to the verb as an ongoing action.
But matlagning in Swedish is an abstract noun which only means 'cooking' as in 'cookery', 'the art of cooking'.
There's no other counterpart to I sing while cooking, both that one and I sing while I cook are Jag sjunger medan jag lagar mat.
In another comment in this thread, Chris-Butler shared this link http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/grammar/british-grammar/while-and-whilst which says that while and whilst have the same meaning when used as a conjunction (like here), the only difference being that whilst is more formal. I quote: "They both mean ‘during the time that something else happens’, or ‘in contrast with something else’." The same goes for medan, it can carry both those meanings.
There's no more formal version of the conjunction medan, but there is a very colloquial version, medans (too colloquial to be an accepted answer here imho).
There are other words that only carry the latter meaning, 'in contrast with …', but then those would be more like 'although' in English. (The standard words are fast or fastän and a very formal or even archaic word with this meaning is ehuru).
No you can't, and you couldn't do that in English either ("I sing while cook"). This is because medan is a subordinating conjunction (and so is when). If you have a coordinating conjunction instead, you can have the same subject in both clauses. Jag sjunger och lagar mat would be just fine, just like in English: I sing and cook.
I cannot ever see any of the comment threads from my app or when in mobile website? (It isn't even an option for me.) Is there a reason for this? Do we all have this problem now or is it just me (and presumably the other ten percent in the new coding trial which means we don't have an activity feed and can't do the oral lessons etc etc)?
Afaik the thing with comments being invisible on mobile is super old (my comment about it here is a year old) but now they've removed the activity feed for everyone, so that's no longer an A/B test. They're undertaking a long overdue revamp of the forum function, and had to turn off the activity streams in the meanwhile for technical reasons, see https://www.duolingo.com/comment/22226909 about that.
Ah I see. That makes me feel better as it felt like I was missing out - especially seeing as I got a notification that someone had written on my activity stream (useful, moving to Lund info) but by the time I got a chance to check it out my stream had gone! So I still feel a bit bad that I never responded! Good to know that there is a method to the madness, I am sure Duolingo will only get better!
medans is a very colloquial form of medan. You'll certainly hear it, but it seems too colloquial to be an accepted answer, anyway there's absolutely no difference in meaning between the two, they're just forms of the same word.
There is a subclause in this sentence: the main sentence is Jag sjunger … (verb in second place) and the subclause is … jag lagar mat. If we add negations we'll get Jag sjunger inte medan jag inte lagar mat with inte after the verb in the main clause and before the verb in the subclause.
Ok thanks, guess I shouldn't trust my teacher (ie my girlfriend!). To be honest I'm not even too sure about the differences between while/whilst in my native English! However I think I can explain myself better today.....
By clause I meant: on the other hand/whereas
The other meaning (like here) means: at the same time as/simultaneously
So medan/+s can mean both these things?
EDIT: It seems while/whilst are synonymous in English and are probably exact in meaning to medan/medans like you said :)
Beginner here but I think I can answer this for you as I had this question not too long ago also! Mods please correct me if I have misunderstood.
I believe that the verb lagar, to cook requires an object. So the generic term to cook is always lagar mat. You can replace mat with something more specific. eg "Jag lagar middag" "Jag lagar nötköttet" etc but never simply "Jag lagar". Additionally I believe that lagar can have the alternative meaning of "to fix" when used alone.
This thread probably answers it better than I have though! https://www.duolingo.com/comment/5892480
If your question is more related to entirely non food items (...!) or other colloquialisms (eg cooking up a plan) and whether the word cook/lagar would be used for those also (not going into too much detail here in a PG13 kinda forum!) then you will have to wait for clarification from one of the mods! haha
Kock is a noun meaning chef or person who cooks. Lagar is the verb meaning to cook but note that it must be used with an object. ie in the absence of a specific food item you would say lagar mat (cooking food) to mean cook. Lagar by itself may mean to fix or mend. Read through some of the comments on this thread for more info.
att laga mat is the verb to cook by itself. ie. the most idiomatic English translation is simply “I sing while I cook.” That said it would not be incorrect to say “I sing while I cook food”. Your sentence says the food in the definite, whereas the Swedish sentence is in the indefinite - I imagine that is why your sentence was not accepted.
This is the natural way of saying it. This sentence structure is perceived as easy and natural by native speakers and is often used in speech. You can't skip jag in the second part because medan is a subordinating conjunction, I wrote about this in a previous comment here, scroll up to read more!