In the lesson, "Il nous apprend les mots." came up and means "He teaches us the words." So how does one easily distinguish when "apprendre" is being used to mean learn or teach? Does it simply rely on an indirect object in the sentence to make it clear that it's not (obviously) "he learns to us the words" despite being terrible English grammar. Is having an indirect object the requirement for using "apprendre" to mean "teach"?
since you have "nous" as an object of "apprend", it means "he teaches words to us". But again, it is not correct to use "apprendre" (to learn) instead of "enseigner" (to teach): otherwise, why have two distinct verbs?
I have the same question as bcrayner below. Also, what is the difference between mots and paroles?
"mots" are combinations of letters, they can be said or written. "Paroles" generally refer to spoken words or sung words (les paroles d'une chanson).
If I want to say, The little boy learns to speak, is it right to say: Le petit garçon apprend parler?
No it is not. You have to use "le petit garçon apprend à parler" (preposition "à" has the same function as the English "to" here).