So for context, i actually went on Duolingo to check out their Chinese course.
And I’ll say this: it’s ass.
So the first thing is this screen, asking which route I want to take.
Of course, I know some Chinese, but to humor myself I’ll take the left path.
So I breeze through the first few exercises, and this problem pops up.
As you can see, the first character was highlighted, leading me to believe that it was asking for just the first character. But it’s not, it’s asking for the entire phrase. Well, why the hell was the first character highlighted then?
And here’s when another problem pops up. In a previous question, you’re introduced to a couple characters as well as what sounds they make. Shortly after, they need you to identify the character by giving you the pinyin (the Romanized pronounciation of Chinese).
However, the problem with this is that it’s just training you to identify the sound with the character and the pinyin. It doesn’t actually tell you how pinyin works, how the symbol above the vowels is supposed to correlate with a different emphasis on the vowel. And for me, this is a major problem. You see, pinyin is basically the basis of pronounciation, and to just launch into a lesson without even covering pinyin first is just a huge turnoff for me.
The other thing is that it’s really anal about how I word my sentences.
Especially, with this one. Although the literal definition of the sentence is the one provided, the answer I provided is also suitable, as 家 can also be taken to mean a place of both residence and origin, for example 老家 would mean “hometown.”
Although it does technically teach Chinese, to me Duolingo is just a joke because of how anal it is with its sentences and the fact that it doesn’t even teach you pinyin.