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AlexanderH

Comic Books / Children's Books to train reading ?

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darvil

Hey guys, thanks for the replies.

I did get my hands on dragonball but I totally forgot about Doraemon (I'll get my hands on it). I'm very happy to hear this because I grew up watching these shows and absolutely LOVE them. Glad to know I can grow my Chinese up again with them LOL.

Only problem I see is that since these mangas have no pinyin, it would be a major hassle (thanks for the tips renzhe!). I would much prefer the pinyin method as it seems to be miles ahead in simplicity.

I do expect a struggle which I've been through before. It used to take me hours to read a few pages (english fantasy novel) since I had to jolt down my notes. Later on I was able to read a novel a day (although I did have more free time back then lol). I'm definitely ready to sweat blood to do this in Chinese.

Gleaves: The series you mentioned James and the Giant Peach, does it have pinyin with it?

chrix: Is this dictionary what you're talking about? I would prefer an electronic one actually. I used to use a paper dictionary. Then I got an electronic one which also pronounced the words. How viable is this in Chinese? I was horrified to learn how I mispronounced alot of English words and I want to avoid this pitfall.

Thanks!

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chrix

Hey, that's not it, the one I'm talking about is much larger, and called 21世紀漢英大辭典, with 180,000 entries.

Well, if you do get an electronic dictionary with pronunciation, be sure you get one with an individual recording for each word, not just for each syllable (though I'm not sure this kind of thing exists)

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imron

I'm a big fan of the paper dictionary approach. It's hard slog in the beginning but it does make you get far more familiar with characters and their radicals because for each character you'll need to study the character to break it down into its component parts to identify the radical, look up the radical, count the number of other strokes, look up the number of strokes, get the pinyin, look up the pinyin, scan over the page looking for the character, and so on. All of this helps reinforce the character in your memory, which is ultimately good for your Chinese. With electronic dictionaries you lose that whole process and while things tend to be quick to look up, they are also quickly forgotten.

Having said all of that, I now primarily use an electronic dictionary as my main dictionary - Pleco, which has the Xiandai Hanyu Guifan Cidian Chinese-Chinese dictionary and the ABC Chinese-English dictionary, both of which are excellent real dictionaries. The two main reasons that finally got me to switch off a paper dictionary are 1) Pleco allows you to save a list of words you've looked up for later revision (which helps combat the quick to look up, quick to forget problem) and 2) it fits on a phone/PDA making it a whole lot easier to carry around. I'd also had years of using a paper dictionary as a base, so was already familiar with things like radicals and breaking down characters into their component parts.

Other features include native speaker recordings for 34,000 words (full-words, not just individual syllables) with both male/female recordings for each one, spaced-repetition flashcards for the non-iPhone versions, plus things such as stroke order and more.

Although it might seem a little pricey, it's definitely worth the investment.

(Disclaimer, Pleco advertises on this site, but I'm posting this as a genuinely satisfied customer rather than because of any financial relationship they have with the forums).

I'm definitely ready to sweat blood to do this in Chinese.
Only problem I see is that since these mangas have no pinyin, it would be a major hassle
Sometimes, you just have to sweat blood.

After a short time, you will likely find that having pinyin is actually more distracting and you'll prefer texts without it.

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Gleaves

darvil - No pinyin in James and the Giant Peach or the other Dahl books. I've seen very few books outisde of basic children's storybooks with pinyin.

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darvil

chrix:

Where would I purchase that particular dictionary? I looked on the net for awhile but can't seem to find a place to purchase. On the chinese sites, I'm not that familiar with how I can purchase it if I was going to get it.

imron:

I wasn't aware of Pleco and now that I look at it I'm thoroughly impressed. Unfortunately I have a blackberry and a zune so I'm outta luck on purchasing their software. But it is definitely something I would like to get. Maybe I can get a used ipod touch. As for your comment about the pinyin, I'll take your word for it. I figured I would like to maximize my time.

What do you guys think about wenlin software?

Gleaves:

Thanks. I may get the books. First I think I will get the breeze Chinese books.

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imron
As for your comment about the pinyin, I'll take your word for it. I figured I would like to maximize my time.
There's maximising time, and there's building a solid foundation. In my opinion, although it seems like an extra time commitment, I actually believe it will reduce the amount of time you spend in the long run, especially as your level improves. It's easy to use pinyin as a crutch and never end up paying proper attention to the characters (even though you might think you are), and this will start to hold you back because you'll not feel comfortable reading texts without them. Think of it like training wheels on a bike. Useful in the beginning, but before long they'll start holding you back (or at the very least prevent you from learning how to ride without them). The sooner you stop using them, the sooner you'll be riding properly.

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darvil

imron,

Do you recommend the same book chrix was recommending? Can you give me a tip on where I can get it?

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chrix

Sorry, I don't know where to get it from, I got mine a long time ago in a bookstore in Taipei... Renzhe got a dictionary with a similar name from a bookstore in Beijing..

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renzhe

Try here.

This is the one I have and I'm really happy with it.

It's very similar to the one chrix recommended, I think they were made from the same sources.

A good dictionary is one of the most important investments you'll make. It's worth it.

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chrix

Wow, can't believe it, $60 But it's a great dictionary (renzhe and I onced compare our dictionaries :wink: )

Edited by chrix

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renzhe

Buying it in China is obviously far cheaper. I think that my copy was 120 yuan, which is around $10 US.

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chrix

No, that's the one you linked to in your post #21. Much smaller.

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renzhe

No, that looks like a completely different dictionary.

I don't know how good it is, but it doesn't have pinyin, which is probably not what you want.

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darvil

60 dollar isn't so bad I suppose.

I could have asked the Chinese TA to pick it up for me this christmas but I didn't even think about this then. Ah well live and learn I guess.

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renzhe

You can get it for $48 (+$4 shipping) through the link I posted.

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darvil

Thanks! I just noticed that.

FYI, thanks for the verycd site! Man that site is definitely a digital oasis of stuff. I got all the comic books I wanted although the doraemon one was poorly scanned so I couldn't make out characters (but others are perfect!). I can even download the episodes of doraemon in chinese! Can work on my listening skill too which is quite poor.

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renzhe

Make sure to check out our TV Series Forum. There are some easier shows in there, suitable for beginners (as much as a proper TV series can be), with transcripts and vocabulary lists and grammar explanations.

It's very good for improving listening comprehension.

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cinyao

Hi.. to all,

I am new to this forum. I intend to purchase some books from online store in Internet. But my relative may go to China in next month, would anyone here introduce some kind of bargain shop (used books material) in Beijing / somewhere? Would it cost cheaper than my online purchasing?

Because my friend needed it for teaching Chinese here. And she needs in a large quantity books. Do you have any preference store that selling cheaper than others?

Thanks alot.. :D

best regards,

sehat tan

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darvil

renzhe,

Thank you for that amazing thread! You've made my day. I've started dling a few of the recommended series. Just fantastic.. with the vocab list and all. I don't think I can do any better to fully engage myself in Chinese.

Thank you guys!

Ordered the dictionary too! Will get an electronic in the future. For now I'm pretty set.

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