Jump to content
Chinese-forums.com
Learn Chinese in China

Good Textbooks for practising listening to news


MengJiaSheng
 Share

Recommended Posts

As I would like to improve my ability to listen to news(radio and tv) I am looking for good textbooks on this topic. When searching myself I only found this series:

www.amazon.cn/gp/aw/d/B0011CGRBW/ref=mp_s_a_4?qid=1295846932&sr=8-4

www.amazon.cn/gp/aw/d/B0011F37OO/ref=mp_s_a_5?qid=1295846932&sr=8-5

Does anyone know these books or has used them in the past? Or are there any other books covering this are of listening practise?

In general does it still make sense to use books to practise listening at this level, or should one just get into the habit of listening to the news everyday?(something i admittedly havent been doing that much in the past). I simply find listening to news so different and so much moree difficult than having a conversation about the same topics in person. Therefore I am trying to find the best way to improve my listening skills in this area.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Site Sponsors:
Pleco for iPhone / Android iPhone & Android Chinese dictionary: camera & hand- writing input, flashcards, audio.
Study Chinese in Kunming 1-1 classes, qualified teachers and unique teaching methods in the Spring City.
Learn Chinese Characters Learn 2289 Chinese Characters in 90 Days with a Unique Flash Card System.
Hacking Chinese Tips and strategies for how to learn Chinese more efficiently
Popup Chinese Translator Understand Chinese inside any Windows application, website or PDF.
Chinese Grammar Wiki All Chinese grammar, organised by level, all in one place.

Textbooks won't be much use for this. The best option you have is to find some radio broadcast or podcast that has transcripts, and then listen to that regularly.

There are a number of topics regarding podcasts with transcripts on the forums, and a quick search should reveal them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The problem with textbooks for listening to (and reading) Chinese news is that they are even more deathly dull than average Chinese textbooks. You might want to have a look at higher-level HSK stuff, which (used, at least) to have a fair amount of news and news-like content, but the best thing to do is to keep hammering away at it. 德国之声 and the BBC's offerings are good places to start, and available via podcast.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The problem with textbooks for listening to (and reading) Chinese news is that they are even more deathly dull than average Chinese textbooks. You might want to have a look at higher-level HSK stuff, which (used, at least) to have a fair amount of news and news-like content, but the best thing to do is to keep hammering away at it. 德国之声 and the BBC's offerings are good places to start, and available via podcast.

So you too are saying that just keeping listening to podcasts and news in general is still the best way to go for? I havent had a look at HSK books at all to be honest, so you would recommend the higher-level HSK Listening books? I guess I always found it easier to study using textbooks so I am kind of trying to stick to that now...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recommend this podcast: http://www.imandarinpod.com/hoola/

They have a near daily 慢速新聞 reading of 5 short news articles (~100-200字). The text for the articles appears on your iPod/iPhone while the podcast is playing, so you can read as you listen.

My practice technique is to read only the headlines of each article before I head to work, then to listen to the articles on the way to work and see if I can pick up the gist of each one. After I get to work, I can then read through each article to pick up anything I missed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I used some news-related textbook that I bought (at least 6 years ago, and thus it may not be available, and I just searched here for 5 minutes and couldn't find any threads talking about it), but I quickly found that the content was indeed very boring. But after a while, I realized that the book did have redeeming features: it did list all the new vocab per chapter and had four common collocations per lesson. However, the tapes did not read out the new vocab or the collocations, just the news passage. So, with the help of a native speaker, I recorded, the passage, plus the new vocab and collocations. I then listened to these tapes for roughly 6 months to a year, and it did really help my listening ability. The point is that even if you buy a textbook and it is not ideal, you can think of ways to get better utility out of it by adapting it to suit your needs.

Of course, Roddy is right that almost any PRC-made textbook about the news will be horribly dull and propagandistic. with that said, a lot of the news is dull and propagandistic, and news textbooks can thus help you get good at understanding mainstream news!

Of course, I always think it's best to combine textbook related stuff with targeted real life practice. In that sense, it might be good to do one hour of textbook news practice per day, combined with some time spent listening/reading the real news.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Meng Lelan, sorry let me clarify this for everyone (you are not the first to ask this question).

Yes, the "Slow-News" reading is called 「听新闻学汉语」on the website, but when you actually download the individual podcasts, the announcer calls it 「慢速新闻汉语」.

Apparently it is done in collaboration with some local news agency. I forget which one exactly, but if you listen carefully at the end of each podcast they will say it.

It is a great resource, I recommend it highly!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The podcasts are free, each podcast comes with a transcript that is visible on the iPod/iPhone as the podcast is playing (think 慢速中文, it's exactly like that). They mention that there are supplemental materials available for download on the website, but I've never tried to get them. Consequently, I don't know if they are free or not.

The news podcasts are fairly straightforward. The announcer identifies herself/himself and then starts reading. They do not read the titles of each article, just the text. There is a pause in between each article. It's pretty much exactly like a real radio broadcast.

The other podcasts on the website (iMandarinPod.com) can be quite advanced. For example there is a series on the 四大發明, a telling of the classic story of 荊軻 and 樊於期, and occasionally a story or two about Confucius as a child.

The podcasts start with a reading, then they go into thorough discussion of vocabulary and grammar, then a second reading. Sometimes the announcer gives you questions to think about before the first reading, and at the end of the second reading they answer the questions. Occasionally at the very end they will give a shout-out to someone who gave good feedback on the website, or someone who did a rare translation (like into Thai or something).

All explanations and dialog are in Chinese, there is no communication in English (which is probably why I like this site so much).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you do a search for Excellent Listening Course you should find a write-up I did on a set of books ages ago. There's quite possibly better stuff available now, but I don't know what. It's not specifically news.

What happens if you listen to

the most recent BBC Chinese news podcast (mp3)? Do you just completely fail? Have you got a good idea of what's going on, but hampered by too much new vocab?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If I listen to something like BBC Chinese Podcast I get the gist of the news, e.g. what its about. But it gets difficult when details are concerned and sometimes I need a little to recognize the vocab used(I know it but dont get it immediately). By the time I get it the speaker has already moved on two or three sentences which makes understanding the piece of news harder. Obviously there is also quite a bit of vocab I dont know yet, but I would not say that that is the main problem.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and select your username and password later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Click here to reply. Select text to quote.

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...