Heblish – Hebrew lessons: Day 58

Singular and plural

Free Hebrew lessons – March 2011 – Training – Day 58

Shalom lekulam, (Hi everyone,)

In our previous lesson we learned how to use the word “say” in past simple tense. Since in Hebrew there is only one form for the past tense, you now know how to use this word in the past tense. 

The translation for “say” and “to say” to Hebrew is not easy, but very important.
We will learn it during our lessons as you read many sentences and examples, until finally you catch it. Anyway, one of the tenses (the past simple) is behind us and it wasn’t difficult.

Today (hayom), we will have fun.

Today’s menu: Singular and plural

Attention: The underlined letters represent the accent.

In Hebrew, the suffix for plural usually tells us the gender of the word. Usually, but not always… 😉

We already learned some plural words, but hayom (today) plural words will be the main subject for our lesson.

Most of the suffixes for plural words in masculine will be “im” – sounds like “eem.”
Most of the suffixes for plural words in feminine will be “ot.”

Below, you can see a funny video, where the mother gives her child, who is 3 years old, a word in singular form and the child is trying to guess the plural form…

Of course there are many mistakes and you don’t really have to listen to all of the video, but it is funny, and you can also hear some of the Hebrew accent…

1) At 33 seconds into the video, Nufar, the mother, says “one life,” how do you say “a lot of lives?” – and Osher, the little boy, answers “^aim.” Actually, he said it correctly, since there is no plural for “life” (^aim), but his mom just wants to document his mistakes and is not really trying to teach him this time… so she almost forced him to make a mistake… 😉

2) At 41 seconds into the video, the mother asks “one picture, a lot of?…” (when she actually wanted to ask: how do you say “a lot of pictures?”) – “tmuna a^at, harbe?…” and Osher answers “tmunot” which is correct.
Next… “one watch,” – “shaon e^ad,”  how do you say “a lot of watches?” and his answer is correct again “sheonim“. The next question is “one dolly, which is “buba” – and his answer is also correct – “bubot.”

Now you can click below and watch the video:
Singular and plural form on YouTube by Osher and Nufar.

English Hebrew – singular Hebrew – plural Suffix
Words from the video      
Life ^aim (m) ^aim  —
Picture Tmuna (f) Tmunot Ot
Dolly Buba (f) Bubot Ot
Words you should know      
Book Sefer (m) Sfarim                Im – sounds like “eem”
Bottle Bakbuk (m) Bakbukim          Im
Bracelet Tsamid (m) Tsmidim            Im
Dress Simla (f) Smalot               Ot
Cake Uga (f) Ugot                  Ot
Ring Tabaat (f) Tabaot               Ot
Some new words      
Pen Et (m) Etim Im
Orange (the fruit) Tapuz (m) Tapuzim Im
Dog Kelev (m) Klavim Im
Boy Yeled (m) Yeladim Im
Envelope Maatafa (ma-a-ta-fa) Maatafot Ot
Sofa Sapa (f) Sapot Ot
Lioness Levia (f) Leviot Ot
Girl Yalda (f) Yeladot Ot


I hope you enjoyed this week’s lesson.  I thought the video was very charming, however, I might be a little prejudiced. The little boy is my great nephew, my sister’s grandson. It’s a great picture of how we learn to speak Hebrew here, but since we can’t all learn this way… hello, Free-Hebrew.com!  😉

Lehitraot in lesson 59…

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