I think there should be a skill dedicated to pronouncing the letters of the alphabet.
This seems essential to learning a language in terms of spelling a word to someone if they don't understand you, saying acronyms, etc.
Yes, I agree, also. In France, I've needed to learn by heart such things as the alphabet, numbers including first/second/third and abbreviations for them (eg 2NDE and 2EME), how to say telephone numbers in pairs, days of the week, months of the year, how to say amounts of Euro (and how to HEAR them very fast and rough!), street and postal addresses, names of towns and regions and places, street and shop signs, transport information, various things that appear in publications and in the TV news, expressing time naval fashion, telephone etiquette, and so on. All those little things we take for granted!
Good video on French numbers 80 through 100 for beginners: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WM1FFhaWj9w
It would also be really helpful if you need to spell your name to someone in whatever language, if you don't know the alphabet, how can you do it!?
I agree with you. It's the first thing I was taught when I went to Germany way back - the alphabet, the different vowel sounds (ä, ö, ü, äu, eu etc.), and as an English speaker the differences in "s", "sch", "ss", "z" and so on. (For example "sprechen"). It was very helpful to be able to start to read signs in public and so on.
Not only individual letters. But also word combinations. 'Eau', 'au', 'op', 'ot', 'o', 'aux', 'os', 'aut', 'eaux', and 'ots' etc. all sound like 'o'. Silent endings are extremely common in French as well. There are multiple ways to make one sound, and oftentimes spelling doesn't really make phonetic sense (ex: eaux). French is a very odd language to master writing in addition to speaking.
i agree with you. somtimes i get a question wrong because i did not understand what a certain letter or accent sounds like. if only.
I think it is a pretty good idea. I often find myself talking to someone who claims to speak "x" language but when they have to spell a word they just don't know the sound of some letters.
I agree. I think there should also be a lesson on phonetics of the language. With Spanish and Italian, it's going to be easy. With French it's going to be really hard. And with German, it will be in between, in terms of difficulty.
Going into all the various details of the phonetics (i.e. phonemes and allophones, and when each manifest themselves) is a tad beyond the scope of DL.
You're right. In the end, the easy way is to find someone who speaks your target language fluently and corrects you on your pronounciation.
Yes, that's a great idea. It would definitely help even for school purposes for your children or friends. The English alphabet is something that is taught early on, and so as we are now learning French it would be a good idea to first teach us the very basic stuff, like the alphabet, numbers and basic words.
I completely agree with this. When I was first learning French and I talked to a French friend and they asked how to spell my name, they asked if there was a y at the end, and they said something like avec un "ygrec" and I had no idea that this was the way that the letter y was pronounced, so of course I was confused. The alphabet is essential- you're completely right.
I agree that such a lesson would be useful, however I do see a problem as to how they would teach it....
Currently the speaking exercises are pretty terrible, and aren't very helpful.... However, if they managed to improve the speaking exercises, I could see it working
I agree. This is a thought I've had before, and if there was a way for Duolingo to efficiently teach the alphabet, numbers, etc., it would be really nice. Until then I think we're just going to have to learn it the old fashioned way with a physical person (or find an alternate program specifically for such things, like somebody else mentioned.) Either way, great idea!
Maybe they can let you spell the answer through the mic instead of typing out the translation. Know what I mean?