In Turkish you use singular case of a noun when you use "geniş zaman/simple present tense". However, English grammar uses plural in the same tense. That's why you wouldn't have "şapkalar" in the Turkish translation. (Just as you wouldn't use singular noun if you formed a sentence in simple present tense.)
Thank you. I appreciate your help.
I'm afraid, though, that I'm still missing something - or I missed it along the way. I did understand that, in Turkish, one wouldn't use the plural with a number (which makes sense), but now I don't quite understand when one would use the plural form. What am I missing?
You're confused because Turkish grammar and English grammar are not similar at all, and you're expecting them to be similar. :)
You'd use plural nouns where necessary. You won't use them everywhere a plural noun is used in English. For example,
"Şapkalar nerede?" - "Where are the hats?"
"Kırmızı şapkalar burada." - "The red hats are here."
"5 şapka" - "5 hats" no plural needed here in Turkish.
"Ben şapka takarım." - "I wear hats." no plural needed here in Turkish.
Does this help?
Thanks for the explanation. I'm working on getting rid of those blinders, and I appreciate the help. ;-)
So, do I understand correctly that you wouldn't use the plural form of a noun if something else in the sentence lets you know you're talking about more than one thing (for example, if a number is given - or, in this sentence, presumably "we" are not all wearing the same hat?)?
But if so, with "Ben şapka takarım" how do you know it isn't "I wear the hat? Oh - is it because the accusative form is not being used?
To reiterate what LadyNurington is saying, you can think of it as English being the one in this case where it's odd/illogical. When we say the general statement "I wear hats" you don't mean you wear multiple hats at the same time right? For English, we must use the plural in general statements like this, if the noun is a countable noun: "I wear hats" "I like cats". But if you want to think about the meaning of this thought, you mean something more like "I often wear a hat" or "Wearing is hat is something I do" something like that, in which the "often" is sort of implied in the simple present form of the verb "wear". Otherwise if you mean you are wearing it at this moment, you'd use the progressive "I am wearing a hat". Hope that helps!