I need further explanation in regards to this problem so I have added further information.
"The accusative is used for the direct object of a sentence. The direct object is the person, animal or thing that the action of the sentence is happening to. For example:
Paul liebt Anna.
Paul loves Anna."
"Now that you understand the concept of the direct object, (i.e., the object to which the action is being done in a sentence) you are ready to look at the concept of the indirect object. An indirect object is the person or thing to (or for) whom (or which) an action is being performed. In English you can spot this by the words to or for. The dative is used to show the indirect object of a sentence.
Die Frau gibt dem Mann einen Kuss.
The woman gives the man a kiss."
Okay I have reviewed the lessons and the examples again and what I don't understand is that according to the explanations both the direct and indirect objects are person's and thing's being acted upon by verbs. I quote determining factors from both the direct and indirect Rocket German explanations. For direct objects part of the explanation is "that the action of the sentence is happening to" for indirect object part of the explanation is "to (or for) whom (or which) an action is being performed." To me, both of these explanations are telling me the same thing.
Now I understand the examples given. Paul (subject) liebt (verb) anna (direct object). There is a direct relationship between liebt and anna. Die Frau (subject) gibt (verb) dem mann (indirect object) einen kuss (direct object). Here there is no direct relationship between gibt and man but rather gibt and kuss so dem man is the indirect object and einen Kuss is the direct object. "Gibt dem Mann" doesn't make sense. "Gibt einen Kuss" makes sense in regards to being a direct object.
Now what throws me are senstences like this one:
"Sie sollen mir sagen." You should tell me.
With this sentence, why is it that the dative "mir" is used? I see Sie (subject), sagen (verb) and mir as the direct object. But apparently I am wrong and mir is correct. Where is the direct object? Doesn't there have to be a direct object before there will be an indirect object?
Thanks so much