Series Post on Driving: Part I. How to say “Driver’s License” in Chinese?

√  Are you guys good drivers?

√  When did you get your driver’s license?

√  Do you know the differences between taking a driving test in China and taking the test in the U.S.?

√  Do you want to know how to say “driver’s license” in Chinese?

Street Sight in St. Augustine

Heavy but Neat Traffic in St. Augustine

Today’s Chinese-learning topic is related to a very important living skill – DRIVING.  

Before I came to the U.S., I passed the driving test in China and got my Chinese driver’s license. I passed my written test about a week ago here in Gainesville, Florida. During my preparation for my driving test here, I found some similarities and several interesting differences between taking a driving test in China and the U.S. 

I guess you guys might be curious about my findings, so I would love to share with you the SIMILARITIES part while teaching you guys the Chinese saying for “driver’s license” in today’s class. Don’t worry, the DIFFERENCES part will be covered in the next post.

Drivers License Office in Gainesville, Florida

The Drivers License Office, 5830 North West 34th Street Gainesville, FL 32653

A “driver’s license” is translated as 驾照 in Chinese. Please follow the audio below to practice pronouncing 驾照.

Chinese Characters for "Driver's License"

Similarities in Taking A Driving Test in China and the U.S.

1. DMV.

I guess you guys must be familiar with DMV, which is short for Department of Motor Vehicle.  This department is in charge of the driving test and issuing the driver’s license in both China and the U.S.. This place is also where the want-to-be drivers schedule the test appointment, get the official driver’s handbook and take the driving test.

2. The Written Test.

The written test section is only one part of the driving test in both China and the U.S. It is not actually a real “written” test since people taking the test will complete this section on a computer. This computer-based test examines the want-to-be drivers of the general knowledge about the traffic rules, the meaning of traffic signs, and some basic first aid skills. People in the U.S preparing for the written test can refer to the official driver’s handbook, which is the same in China, or attend a traffic school.

3. The Traffic School.

Same as in the U.S., there are traffic schools in China as well, where people pay for lessons to get instructions on how to pass the driving test.

(I will cover more about the traffic schools in the DIFFERENCES part.)

4. The Written Test Prior to the Road Test.

In both China and the U.S., you can’t take a road test unless you pass the written test first. In China, the DMV will have a record of one passing the written test; whereas in the U.S., the want-to-be drivers will receive a learner’s permit as a prove for having passed the written test. However, it might take up to a month before one receives the real learner’s permit. Instead, a lot of people choose to take the tiny white receipt rather than waiting for the learner’s permit, especially when they decide to take the road test shortly after. 

Xuan's and her friend's White Receipts

Xuan's and her friend's White Receipts

Interesting, huh? 

I am always excited about discovering all these fascinating cultural differences, which is also the fun part during foreign language learning. Hope you enjoyed today’s lesson. Please come back and check for the DIFFERENCES part in the next post. :)

Got more interesting experience preparing for your driver’s license or taking the driving test to share with us?
Know more about taking a driving test in other states in the U.S.?
Your comments and ideas are warmly welcomed from the bottom of my heart!
by Xuan♥.


How to Say “Historic City” in Chinese?

Hey guys, welcome back! It feels like I haven’t talked to you guys for a while. Why?—Because I was away for my spring break with my friends! We went to the famous historic city in Florida, even one of the most renowned historic places in the U.S., Saint Augustine. Today I will “show you around” this historic city and teach you guys how to say “historic city” in Chinese!

the Castillo de San Marcos national monument

the Castillo de San Marcos national monument

St. Augustine (click here for its position, and here for a more complete history with old illustrations and photographs online) was found by Spanish settlers in September 1565, and it was then make the oldest continually occupied European settlement in North America. That’s why St. Augustine is called a “historic city”. A “historic city” is translated as “古城” in Chinese, which means an old city with lots of appealing history.

Chinese Characters for "historic city"

A Red Ripley's Sightseeing Train

A Red Ripley's Sightseeing Train

Since the city was colonized by Spain and England before it was taken control by the U.S., European-style constructions and carriages (for tourists) can be seen everywhere in Saint Augustine. You can walk or drive a segway within the city, and you can choose to take a Ripley’s sightseeing train as well. 

A Carriage in Front of The Casa Monica Hotel

A Carriage in Front of The Casa Monica Hotel

My friends and I visited the Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Museum, known for St.Augustine’s best ghost train tour; the Castillo de San Marcos national monument, the oldest masonry fortification in the continental United States, which anchored the St. Augustine defense system; the Huguenot Cemetery (a public burial place for non-Catholics who died of the yellow fever epidemic in 1821 within the city), and the Town Wall

We walked along the Castillo Drive and the famous King Street.

 We also took a tour to the Potter’s Wax Museum, the Lightner Museum and the Flagler College

King ST DETOUR

King ST DETOUR

 At last, I also want to recommend a very cozy and economic place to live when you go on a St. Augustine trip, the La Quinta Inn & Suites St. Augustine.

Last but not the least, here’s a gift for you at the end of this post —— a slideshow of photographs I took in St. Augustine! Enjoy!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Got more stories about St. Augustine or other historic cities to share with us?

Your comments and ideas are warmly welcomed from the bottom of my heart!

by Xuan♥.

How to Say “Husky Dogs” in Chinese?

Hey there! Welcome back! I am a dog person. What about you guys?

I LOVE dogs, so today we are going to talk about one of my favorite types of dogs, husky dog.

A Brief Introduction To “Husky Dogs”

Hurry in his favorite seat

Hurry in his favorite seat

Husky is one of the primitive dog types. Husky dogs get their names “husky” because their voices are specially husky.

Husky dogs used to pull sleds in northern regions, but now they have become one of the most popular pet dogs all over the world. They are also well-known for their pretty faces.

My Husky Dog in China

Harry, My little handsome buddy

Harry, My little handsome buddy

The cuuuuuute dog in the picture is my husky dog back in China. His name is Harry. My mother always calls him “Honey” “by accident.” He was born on September.22, 2011. He came to my family when he was only 40 days old, and now he has become a handsome, little buddy.

He is spoiled. So he always “pretends to be angry” when we are too busy to play with him.

Harry in sunglasses

Harry in sunglasses

He is naughty. So he always wants to sit on the driver’s seat in our car.

He is clever. So he has learnt to shake hands before asking for food.

My families love him no matter what he does.

Chinese Characters and Pronunciation for “Husky”

Husky is not a word originally from Chinese, so we Chinese borrowed the English word and translated it according to its pronunciation. Having said that, I guess this must make it a lot easier for you guys to learn the Chinese pronunciation of it. Husky is translated as “哈士奇” in Chinese.

Chinese Characters for Husky

Husky Dogs can speak & sing!!! Is it true???

It is said husky dogs are the breed with the closest genetic relationship with wolves, so they don’t BARK or WOOF as other types of dogs do. Instead, they HOWL like wolves, with a long draw.

They don’t howl with the same tone.  Instead, they adjust and change their tones according to their moods. So people find that it sounds like singing when a husky dog makes a long draw.  

What’s more, husky dogs are clever as I said earlier, so people started to teach them to say various words.

Don’t believe it? Come and check this out! A female husky dog named Mishka say “I LOVE U”!!!

Got more stories about Husky dogs to share with us?

  Your comments and ideas are warmly welcomed from the bottom of my heart!

  by Xuan♥.

How to GREET in Chinese?

As we all know, there are tons of greetings in English, such as “Hello!” “Hi!” “Hey!” “Good morning!” “Good afternoon!” “Good evening!” as well as “How are you?” “How do you do?” The Chinese language is the same: we also have different sayings to greet someone. But different sayings should be used under different circumstances.

Greetings From Mickey Mouse

Greetings From Mickey Mouse@ Disneyland Orlando

Greetings In Formal Circumstances…

As known to us all, “Hello” is the English expression for greetings in the most formal circumstances, such as greetings exchanged during people’s first meeting or greetings at the beginning of a business negotiation. “Hello” is translated as “你好” in Chinese. What’s more, “你好” is also used when elderly people greet each other.

Chinese Character/Saying for Hello_formal 

Greetings Between Different Generations…

It is different when an elder greets a young person and when young people greet the elderly.

An elder people will usually say “你好” when he greets a young person, which hopefully you remember from the first circumstance we talked about just now.

However, a youth will greet one who is elder than him in another way to express his respect. He will greet by saying “您好!” “您”means the same as “你”, both meaning “you” in Chinese. But “您” sounds more polite and decent than “你.”

Chinese Character/Saying for Hello_with respect 

Greetings Between People Who Know Each Other Well…

Americans greet someone whom they know well with “hi” or “hey.” “嗨.” The interesting thing is that we have two Chinese characters with exactly both the same meaning and the same pronunciation in Chinese.

Check this out. “嗨” stands for “hi” while “嘿” means “hey.”

Chinese Character/Saying for Hi 

Chinese Character/Saying for Hey 

Easy, huh?

Some “Weird” Greetings In Chinese…

The above greetings don’t show too many differences between the Chinese and American cultures.

Americans will feel offended when they are asked by a friend where they are going or what they are going to do. They will consider these questions quite personal and private. So you may find these Chinese greetings quite frustrating and weird.

Usually, we Chinese greet friends without directly saying “hi” or the like. Rather, we ask a question. such as “干嘛去?”which means “What are you going to do?”“去哪儿呀?”which means “Where are you going?” or “吃了吗?” which means “Have you eaten?”

Chinese Character/Saying for What Are You Going To Do  

Chinese Character/Saying for Where Are You Going  

Chinese Character/Saying for Have You Eaten 

See how interesting that is? It is always interesting to learn about a different culture when we learn a different language.

Xuan's Greeting From Underwater

Xuan's Greeting From Underwater

  

  Got more GREETINGS to share with us?

  Your comments and ideas are warmly welcomed from the bottom of my heart!

  by Xuan♥.

How to Say The Color RED in Chinese?

Hey my friends, ready for this week’s Chinese lesson? Today’s lesson is about the color RED. Want to know how to pronounce RED in Chinese? Want to know the story behind RED? Want to know what RED means in China? Want to know when you definitely shouldn’t use RED in China?

How to Pronounce RED in Chinese?

“Red” is translated as 红 or 红色 in Chinese. The Chinese character “红” stands for RED and “色” for color. Different from the English saying, we usually say “红色”rather than simply “红”. But “红” and “红色” have the same meaning in Chinese.

 Chinese Character For RED

Chinese Character For RED2

A Myth about RED…

The Chinese Lunar New Year is one of the most traditional festivals in China. Chinese usually stick red Chinese Festival scrolls on the front door and light red fireworks and lanterns to celebrate the big moment once a year. But do you know why Chinese choose the color RED?

Long, long ago, there was a beast named “年,” which means “Year” in English. Every Chinese Spring Festival Eve the beast would always attack the village where our ancestors lived and hurt the human beings and the livestock. In order to avoid the attack from the beast, our ancestors had to escape from the village and hide in the forests on that night.

One afternoon before the Chinese Spring Festival Eve, when our ancestors were about to get out of the village with the old and young in their families, an old man with a long, white mustache walked into the village. The old man told our ancestors there was no need to panic. He said he knew how to deal with the beast named Year. The ancestors didn’t believe him at all and hid in the forest shortly after, leaving the old man in the village alone for the night. The old man chose a house, pasted red paper on the front door, lit a red lantern in the house, and waited for the beast.

The beast came to the village as usual that night. However, it got so intimidated that it ran away immediately after it saw the red paper on the door and the red lantern in the room. From then on, the villagers imitated what the old man did, sticking red paper on the front door, which helped them drive the evil away. The beast has never come back since.

This is the reason why RED is given the connotation of “driving the evil away” and “auspiciousness.”

About The RED Chinese Knot…

Wondering what is in the photo? It’s a red “Chinese Knot.”

Chinese Knot

Chinese Knot

There are many types of Chinese knots. Red Chinese Knot is the most common type of the Chinese Knots.  The “Chinese knot” is a traditional Chinese folk handcraft. Every Chinese knot is made out of ONE thread from the very beginning to the very end.

Also, there are many shapes of Chinese knots. Different shapes stand for different meanings. One can give an elderly person a Chinese knot as a birthday gift meaning best wishes for a long life; one can give a driver a Chinese knot for decoration in his car and to express wishes for a safe trip; One can also give business owners a Chinese knot with an Chinese ancient coin on it, which means “May you have a brisk business!”

These Are Times When RED Is Absolutely Needed In China…

The color RED symbolizes happiness, auspiciousness, bravery and so forth; so Chinese people love RED and have been using RED for different purposes for thousands of years.

√ Wearing RED underwear, panties, belts, and the like during your zodiac year.(CLICK for the explanation of Chinese Zodiac) It is said that bad things usually happen to one in his zodiac year and RED is said to have the meaning of “driving the evils away”, similar to many other cultures. So it is believed that RED can protect one from bad things during his zodiac year.

√ RED is the traditional color for wedding ceremonies. It is very common, especially in ancient times, for newly married couples to use red curtains, red bed sheets, red quilts and nearly everything you can imagine in the color red.

√ In ancient China, the walls of the temples and palaces are red. You may wonder why. RED is also considered to be a color of dignity, and regular people were not even allowed to be near the palaces owned by the people in power. Today you can still see the red walls of the Ti’anmen Tower in Ti’anmen Square.

These Are Times When You Definitely Don’t Want RED In China…

The color RED is deeply loved and cherished by Chinese people, but you never want to use red under these circumstances:

× Writing a person’s name (or signing your own name) in RED means the person is dead.

× Never attend a funeral wearing RED. The color “white” is usually the decorating color of a funeral, and people usually wear “black” when attending a funeral.

× Writing a letter in RED means the end of relationship between the one who writes it and the one who receives it, no matter if it is a love relationship or a friendship.

Xuan in Sunset

   

   Having fun learning all about RED in China?

   Know more about RED in China or in some other cultures?

   Your comments and ideas are warmly welcomed from the bottom of my heart! 

                                    by Xuan♥.

Everyday Expressions First Delivery

Everyday Expressions I : When You First Meet With Someone

As I said in the last post, the power of listening can not be ignored in learning a language, even though learning by listening is only one part. Before we go into the “systematic” learning of  PinYin (a signal which helps you read and remember Chinese character – this is a definition created on my own for your learning and understanding), I will first teach you guys some basic but really, really practical and useful everyday Chinese expressions with audio recordings of my own. Today’s everyday expressions will cover the theme “when you first meet with someone”.

In the list below, the “strange-looked” characters following every English sentence is the Chinese translation. Since every language has various ways of expressing the same meaning, I picked some of the most commonly used ones. These expressions can really help you impress your foreign friends when you first meet with them.

earplugEvery recording includes two copies of reading: the first one is with a slower speed, while the latter with the normal speed. You can learn by imitating the recordings. First try to pronounce them clearly and correctly first, and then build up your speed with proficiency.

                     Happy learning!

CLICK the links below for recordings!

Hello!        你好!           Slow-Speed Recording         Normal-Speed Recording

Hi!              嗨!                        Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

Nice to meet you.    很高兴见到你。               Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

How are you?         你好吗?                              Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

I’m fine/good.         我很好。                             Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

Thank you.             谢谢你。                               Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

And you?                你呢?                                  Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

What’s your name?             你叫什么名字?              Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

Or   What’ your name?      你的名字是什么?          Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

My name is …      我的名字是。。。                  Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

You are welcome.         不客气。                       Slow-Speed                   Normal-Speed

Or   You are welcome.        不用谢。               Slow-Speed                  Normal-Speed

(I’m) Sorry.          对不起。                                 Slow-Speed                    Normal-Speed

Never mind./ It doesn’t matter.      没关系。    Slow-Speed     Normal-Speed

Happy New Year!           新年快乐!              Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

Good morning!               早上好!                    Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

Good afternoon!           下午好!                     Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

Good Evening!                    晚上好!                Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

See you in a while!            一会儿见!           Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

See you tomorrow!       明天见!                   Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

I am  Chinese.               我是中国人。             Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

I am from China.       我来自中国。              Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

I am  American.        我是美国人。               Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

I am from America.       我来自美国。        Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

That’s so nice of you.     你真好!                Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

I like you!               我喜欢你!                         Slow-Speed             Normal-Speed

I love you!              我爱你!                             Slow-Speed              Normal-Speed 

(The last one is a present expression from Xuan. Learn it,say it fluently and loudly to your lover!)

I love you.

I LOVE U.

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

two wands

5 DON’TS in Chinese Learning

 

Don’t waste your life on trying some so-called “fancy” learning methods and strategies and ignore the basic language learning approach – repetition.

“Repetition” is the golden rule. There is no tricks or shortcuts in language learning. I know “repetition” is somewhat, or pretty much, boring and time-consuming. And sometimes you can’t even feel your progress. However, I can guarantee you nothing but that you will make it to a higher level after you survive every bottleneck period.

 “Practice makes perfect” is cliché. But the saying sells itself.

 

Don’t measure What U Learn with How Fast U Learn.

Learning speed varies among different age groups, between different genders, and among an individual’s different time periods of the day.

Don’t get too excited when you finish a day’s learning within half of the time as usual.

Don’t get too frustrated sometime when you can’t go on with the day’s learning.

Everything will be fine as long as you stick onto the learning and never give up!

 

Don’t lose your perseverance when intimidated by the pop-up learning barriers.

Language learning is not done within one day or a short period of time. Monster difficulties will company you every day during your learning. You’ll always have to keep that in mind.

You may burn the roof of your house before you learn to cook.

You may fall off your bike millions of times before you learn how to ride it.

You will have a long way to go before you master a new skill, from which you will benefit instead of really getting hurt.

Well. Here’s another cozy choice — simply stop reading this post, close the tab and go out have fun. I guess that might not be your choice, is it?

 

Don’t merely learn rather than putting what you learn into practice.

The purpose why we learn a language is to master it, use it and communicate with it. So it is necessary and best to figure out how to learn and use it under practical settings.

We have a phrase for some English learners in China, “dumb English”, which refers to the phenomenon that a lot of English learners are pretty good at reading and writing, however, without the ability to SPEAK, just like a “dumb” person.

I guess you don’t want to be a dumb Chinese speaker. Am I right?

  

Don’t forget about the power of listening practice.

We are born with ears, and that’s one of the many ways languages make their first debut around us.

Will you be curious when you hear people around you speak another language?

Have you ever tried to decipher the “code” and figure out what they are talking about?

You hear Chinese even before you learn it, and you can learn faster as you listen more. Try some Chinese audio/video podcasts, Chinese pop songs, Chinese movies (you can hide the subtitles if you’d like) and keep this as a everyday tradition. I don’t think there’s a necessity for me to tell you what will happen.

Now can you hear the sound you speaking fluent Chinese haunting around your head?

 

Our Course Syllabus

Hey, everyone! Greeting to you all with my new post! Today you will get to know the draft-version of our Chinese class syllabus. Now please check this out! Please feel free to leave your comments and questions in a sense that we can better our learning process together!

For a better understanding of the syllabus, here are a few points I would invite you to go through first.

1. The order of these phases doesn’t necessarily indicate the hierarchy of the knowledge. If, however, you are a Chinese learner without any previous learning background or instruction from others, I strongly suggest you go through the whole learning process within the order I listed.

2.  The levels in different phases doesn’t necessarily indicate the easiness of the content. That said, some of them are on the same level of easiness with others, while some are the foundation of others. Anyone who wants to skip and learn can refer to the detailed description of every future class/post.

3.  The number of lessons within every phases is not finally decided. I will decide the number of the lessons according to my self-prepared teaching plan with the up-to-date references. Please refer to the actual lessons for the “official” decision. I will try my best to balance the contents and workload within every lesson.

4. You may encounter a lot of news words/terminologies in this syllabus, which will be covered with detailed explanations later in the course!

5. Regard to the terminologies mentioned in the last item, there are no standard ways of saying that!( I suppose everyone knows that translation can never convey the authentic meaning.) But I will try to choose the most appropriate and the easiest way to let you guys get the true meaning of them.

6. For a fun learning process, you will be told to have achieved some certain VICTORIES while your learning. In other words, learning another language can be a time-consuming course and the learners always want to know how far they have gone. My “VICTORY” notes will tell you by when and by what you have learnt will enable you to actually use Chinese in a practical setting.

A trophy indicating Victories(a copyright free image)

Victories

Phase One-Playing With the Pinyin (Spelling, Reading and Writing)

We Chinese learn English with the phonetic alphabet, here I will teach you to learn Chinese using Pinyin!

  • Level One  Introduction to Pinyin
  •              Lesson One What is Pinyin? How is Pinyin constructed? How does Pinyin work in reading and writing Chinese?
  • Level Two Getting to Know Different Parts of Pinyin
  •              Lesson One__23 Initials (of Pinyin)
  •              Lesson Two__24 Finals(of Pinyin)    (including 6 single finals, 9 plural finals, 5 front-nasal finals and 4 post-nasal finals)
  •              Lesson Three__16 Whole-Reading Syllables

Victory One: Now you can text your Chinese friends with pinyin, even if you only have English operating system in your cell phone!

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Phase Two-Playing with The Four Tones  in Chinese Characters

An American friend of mine once told me, “The fours tones in Chinese are just like singing!”Level One  4 Tones

  •              Level Two__Several Reading Rules Under Some Specific Circumstances
  •              Level Three__Getting to Know A New Way of Typing Pinyin with Tones on your Own Computer
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Phase Three-Playing with The Chinese Characters

  •               Level One__A General Introduction to the Basic Structure Types of Chinese Characters
  •                  Lessons will cover the Chinese names for the structure types, the Pinyin for them and their applications in Chinese characters.
  •               Level Two__Introduction to the 8 Most Basic Strokes of Chinese Characters
  •                 Lessons will cover the Chinese names for the stokes, the Pinyin for them, their writing orders and rules and their applications in Chinese characters.
  •                 Lesson One 横(heng2)
  •                 Lesson Two 竖(shu4)
  •                 Lesson Three 撇(pie3)
  •                 Lesson Four  捺(na4)
  •                 Lesson Five   点(dian3)
  •                 Lesson Six  折(zhe2)(including several types of 折)
  •                 Lesson Seven 勾(gou1) (including several types of 勾)
  •                 Lesson Eight 提(ti2) (overlapping with some 折 and 勾)
  •               Level Three__Introduction to Some Basic Types of Fixed Radicals(Components of Chinese Characters) And Their Applications
  •               Level Four__The Origins of Onomatopoetic Characters and Pictographic Characters and Their Practical Applications for Chinese learners

Ready to Learn Reading and Writing Chinese Characters?

Language is a very important part of any culture since it can keep record of and be counted as the reflection of a culture’s evolution and development.

Do you…?

^ Do you want to get closer to the Chinese culture?

^ Do you want to learn to read and write Chinese from the very first step?

^ Do you want to know how to read and write Chinese characters?

^ Do you want the skills necessary to do more self-learning after you have mastered elementary Chinese?

If so, you are at exactly the right place!

Follow Me!

Follow Me!

Welcome to “The Path to Chinese Characters” (let this be for a while before anything better comes up)!

There are lots of people who have a strong desire to learn Chinese as their second language. According to my findings, the Chinese learning blogs and websites focus more on pinyin (a concept we will cover later in the learning) other than how to actually write the characters. Since I have been practicing Chinese calligraphy since I was six, I can simply and effectively teach you how the strokes in Chinese characters are written. My blog will give you access to Chinese language instruction featuring over both reading and writing without the fuss of going to class or paying tuition!

Here in “The Path to Chinese Characters” blog, you will be exposed to instructions on both reading and writing Chinese. As to the reading part, you will learn not only what the pinyin is, but also how the pinyin is formed. You will learn how the twenty-six English letters are pronounced in pinyin and how the four intonations should be pronounced; As to the writing part, you will learn what the writing order is like for every single stroke that forms the Chinese characters, Chinese grammar and Chinese punctuations.”)

To sum up, I will begin teaching starting from the elementary-level, to give you a foundation of basic skills and knowledge needed to learn Chinese. From here you will be able to design your own learning if you want to learn more.

You, of course, won’t be alone!

I will invite some of my American friends, the Chinese majors, to our “classes”. We will be having them to talk about how they learn Chinese and what suggestions they will give to the starters. I will also link you to some Chinese learning blogs and websites, which I find helpful.

Well, Well…A Little Bit about ME

Well, about the blogger, me, I guess that’s also something you might be interested in. I am Xuan Tian, a first-year journalism graduate student from the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida. I am from Hebei Province, China. My first name is pronounced as [xuan] with a second raising tone. Do you think yourself getting the pronunciation of [xuan] right? Most of my (non-Chinese) friends can’t get it right when they try to pronounce it at the first time. But I am sure that all of you will know well how to pronounce it after you start your journey of Chinese learning with me by following or subscribing to this blog.

I am into journalism and mass communications. I have done a lot of hosting and broadcasting in both Chinese and English since my high school. I maintained three radio programs of my own in a provincial broadcasting and television bureau since my second year in college. I love singing English songs, especially Christina Aguilera’s, Kelly Clarkson’s and Celine Dion’s songs.

Things You Need to Know Before Getting On Board…

Actually here are a few points I think you should know before our “classes” start:

1: Learning Chinese is a long, profound process, which takes time, effort and maybe confidence. Such persistence is required when you are learning any language.  Remember, you really, really need repeated practice.

2: You will go through a hard time learning “accent issues” due to the four intonations in Chinese. I cannot guarantee that everyone will take the same length of time

3: Being able to speak Chinese well doesn’t necessarily mean you will also be close to a high level of writing Chinese characters. You will find out why later in the learning.

4: The pinyin, which incorporates the exact same twenty-six English letters with much distinguishing pronunciations.

Ready? Go!

Let’s work together for a wonderful and challenging experience learning Chinese !