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

amandagmu

Review of That's Mandarin

Recommended Posts

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.

pattyj313

Hi,

I'm looking into enrolling in That's Mandarin as well in this coming Fall, so I'm glad that I stumbled upon your review. Thanks! Which branch did you attend your classes at? I'm looking into the Dongzhimen branch because its neighborhood seems to have a lot of apartment conveniently located around. Their 1:1 classes seem attractive as I think I need a tailor-made course to suit my needs (I can read traditional characters so I'm not a beginner in the reading and written level; however, I do not understand pinyin at all, which places me into an absolute beginners level). However, I also wanted to meet some friends as I'm going there solo, knowing nobody, so I'm inclined to attend their group lessons that are tailored for the beginners. I then discovered this other place called mandarin house, which is also in CBD, but I've been having a hard time finding suitable apartment around it. It is located in DaWang Lu. The consultant (Rachel) spent an 1+ hour on Skype with me on a Saturday to assess my level and answer my questions. If it weren't for the accommodation, I think I'd sign them up in a heartbeat. They offered group courses in all levels, so you may wanna check out their site.

In the off chance that anyone is familiar with DaWang Lu district, it would be very much appreciated if you could drop me a line here and let me know

1) whether it's a safe / convenience district to live in

2) know of any good short-term (3-months) apartment complex. I checked Huamao, the agent told me that they don't offer short-term lease, and its' price is out of my budget anyway.

3) is dongzhimen wai a good district to live in? (Rachel told me that would take around 40 mins commute time to Dawang Lu, but I might just have to suck it up...)

Many thanks in advance

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
lanzhoumian

I cant comment on Thats Mandarin, never been.

However, I take classes in the Da Wang Lu area at www.livethelanguage.cn The area is certainly safe (Central Business District) and I find it convenient, as I can walk to class. It takes about 20 minutes by bike to get to the Sanlitun Bar Street Area though.

When I started with my school, I staid with a home stay family for the first month, mainly for getting myself to speak more Chinese, which did work very well language wise, but was a bit above my budget for the long term, so I got my own place. If you want somewhere to stay in Beijing for the short term, the school should be able to sort you out. I met a few students at my school who all had their accommodation arranged through Live the Language, some in dormitories others apartments, they have a girl there who seems to just do that.

I considered Mandarin House too when choosing where to go (was at BLCU beforehand), but I had heard some not so good things from a few friends, so decided to go for Live the Language. Its been very good for the teaching so far and has a quite nice and relaxed atmosphere which is quite important to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
michaelbenson

Hi guys :)

Just wanted to say that I've been studying with the That's Mandarin branch in Dongzhimen this year and really enjoyed my time. The teaching was effective, encouraging and I felt as though it was tailored towards our individual learning paces. I was placed with someone else, who I already knew beforehand, and I found this quite useful, you don't feel the pressure you perhaps might in a one-on-one learning environment and we also learnt at a similar pace but at the same time spurred on one another to try and improve (also giving a good sense of where we should be by certain stages!).

Anyway I'd definitely recommend them! If you want to read a little more I did a more comprehensive review of the That's Mandarin school here: http://thatbenson.com/thats-mandarin-review/ :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
amandagmu

Sorry, I should have mentioned in my original post that I studied at the Dongzhimen branch. Excellent, professional facilities and very friendly, helpful staff members. I agree with what michaelbenson says on his blog and the above post, and can only reiterate what I did in my review: I think I would have been more pleased had I started with them at a lower level of the language. At this point I'm reading newspapers and academic books and I wanted to discuss the topics in these as well as subtle differences between certain vocabulary and grammatical structures. Thankfully I recently found a retired teacher through Culture Yard who is a good fit for somebody like me. I still haven't found a decent, affordable (non-IUP) program for advanced learners in Beijing, or a regular group class that's interesting/stimulating, but I do think it's possible to find appropriate teachers and tutors for 1-on-1 teaching either through specific schools, word-of-mouth or thebeijinger.com. Personally, I've been very happy meeting PhD students at Beida for coffee and practice in more formal language, even though they can't help much with specific language questions I may have (hence I am always looking for highly qualified teachers to correct AND explain my mistakes!).

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
cjfmsc

I had a trial lesson with them and was impressed with their teaching method (liked the use of computer, and recording), impressed with their classrooms (far better than some of the others that I have tried) but the price was far too high.

There are equally good schools at far more attractive prices.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
imron
There are equally good schools at far more attractive prices.

Please feel free to write a review about these equally good schools too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
roddy

Thanks for the post, and glad you had a good experience - especially the homestay, they can be problematic. 

Share this post


Link to post
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.


×
×
  • Create New...