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艾墨本

A Short List of Resources for Studying Chinese

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Flickserve

Would you consider apps to aid listening practice such as workaudio book, vlc etc

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艾墨本
5 hours ago, Flickserve said:

Would you consider apps to aid listening practice such as workaudio book, vlc etc

Of course!

 

What makes it great?

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roddy

Some thoughts on recent discussion. 

 

  1. There's already 50-odd links in the first post .That's a fair number.
  2. I don't see this as a 'best Chinese learning resources' list - that's a fool's errand. More 'Maybe not best for you, because we know nothing about you, but probably a good place to start while you figure out what might be better'
  3. There's ample discussion on alternatives all over the site, and if there isn't anyone can start one. I'd be happy to see those linked to from the list. It might be better to discuss alternatives, etc, in other specific (ie. Online dictionaries, reading resources) topics, rather than here.
  4. The above (this is deliberately brief, these are decent but not necessarily ideal for you, do keep looking if you want) should perhaps be made more explicit in the blurb above the list.
  5. It's quite rare for someone to step up and say "I'll maintain this" and then actually do so consistently. Gratitude is due. So, thanks.
  6. Only one paper textbook seems too few - good to have a mainland and overseas published option, for availability issues, at least. 
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艾墨本
30 minutes ago, roddy said:
  1. There's already 50-odd links in the first post .That's a fair number.
  2. I don't see this as a 'best Chinese learning resources' list - that's a fool's errand. More 'Maybe not best for you, because we know nothing about you, but probably a good place to start while you figure out what might be better'
  3. There's ample discussion on alternatives all over the site, and if there isn't anyone can start one. I'd be happy to see those linked to from the list. It might be better to discuss alternatives, etc, in other specific (ie. Online dictionaries, reading resources) topics, rather than here.
  4. The above (this is deliberately brief, these are decent but not necessarily ideal for you, do keep looking if you want) should perhaps be made more explicit in the blurb above the list.
  5. It's quite rare for someone to step up and say "I'll maintain this" and then actually do so consistently. Gratitude is due. So, thanks.
  6. Only one paper textbook seems too few - good to have a mainland and overseas published option, for availability issues, at least. 

2. Well said and I'll add a line similar to what you said in point 4.

3. I like this idea and will spend some time doing that. I have to focus on preparation for school right now.

6. You make a good point. 

 

To expand on paper textbooks:

Some candidates are integrated Chinese, developing Chinese, and Jump High.

 

I like integrated Chinese because it does a good job of doing some of everything in a balanced way. For me this means I can scaffold it with additional materials to as need. For example, after the first year I would add in graded readers or TCB. Maybe create a vocab list on Skritter, Anki or Pleco for the characters (actually, I bet they already exist since it's such a commonly used book). I also found the audio files to progress at a nice pace and can be used for passive listening throughout the day. Lastly, the explanations for the grammar points were good enough that I was able to self-learn it and pass out of one semester while in college. This last point is my main complaint of developing Chinese which I found to have poor grammar explanations. However, the way that Developing Chinese breaks up the books into different categories as well as offering an integrated option is very nice. I would just prefer to use things other than textbooks for activities like focused reading (extensive or intensive which can be done with graded readers or TCB, respectively). This keeps things more interesting. Lastly, I found the exercises to be good but not enough in integrated Chinese. I think this could have been remedies with better studying strategies that I didn't know of at the time. Looking back, I wish I had a teacher that spent more time on studying strategies as well. 

 

Side note, the persistent characters in the Integrated Chinese series was something many of my friends loved and led to a lot of fun language-play surrounding the characters. Can't say it had that effect on me, though.

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roddy
1 minute ago, 艾墨本 said:

I like this idea and will spend some time doing that. I have to focus on preparation for school right now.

 

I'm not going to argue with you, but you're already doing this and the CIS topic. Don't over-commit. 

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Flickserve

I recommend Repeat Player app on Android for repetitive listening practice whilst on the go. Load an MP3 into the app. It could be a lesson, or a recording of a conversation or even repeat phrases which you have prepared before in your computer. What is good is the simplicity of the features. Press a button to rewind / forward 5 seconds (or of your preference in settings). There is also a loop function. Free and simple.

 

Rewind / forward for such a short length of time does not exist in many mp3 players.

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roddy

See, that's a great recommendation - but it's not a top-level getting-started recommendation. First, you need to have some material (in mp3 format) to use it with. You need to know what usefully to do with it (a beginner can listen to a loop of fast native speech all she likes, it's not a good use of time). And crucially, you probably need to spend some time with a listening course or a textbook or a radio show until you realise yourself "Hey, you know what would be useful here..."

 

So I'm all for cataloguing and recommending resources like that. But to my mind that's a recommendation for a list targeted at people looking specifically for listening (or pronunciation) help, or intermediate learners. 

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markcarter

A quick heads-up that our Hanping SoundBox app (no longer available) is now rolled into our Hanping Chinese Dictionary apps. Specifically:

 

Hanping Chinese Dictionary Lite: soundboard of single-syllable sounds only

Hanping Chinese Dictionary Pro: soundboard of single-syllable sounds & soundboard of tone pairs (via HSK2-5 voice paid add-on)

 

Our Hanping Cantonese Dictionary app also has a soundboard for single-syllable sounds.

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艾墨本

I just updated the pronunciation section to reflect the changes to Soundbox and Hanping Chinese Dictionary.

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Flickserve
On 29/08/2017 at 6:08 PM, roddy said:

But to my mind that's a recommendation for a list targeted at people looking specifically for listening (or pronunciation) help, or intermediate learners. 

 

But that's OK, right? For example, the first post contains Anki which is not exactly a beginner's app. The workbook audio and repeat player apps are free. They are both aids to learning, even though specifically they do not contain vocabulary/grammar/recordings/exercises (similar to Anki in that respect). 

 

"Resources to learn Chinese" doesn't necessarily mean beginners resources does it? 

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Flickserve
On 29/08/2017 at 4:33 PM, 艾墨本 said:

What makes it great?

 

Convenient way to segment phrases/sentences in an MP3 file for repetitive practice or transcribing. 

 

TysonD explains it far better 

 

https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/44952-workaudiobook-–-a-tool-for-listening-practice-and-subtitle-creation/

 

Additional troubleshooting for getting sentences into Anki 

 

https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/48734-applying-tysonds-way-of-using-workaudiobook-and-subs2srs-to-learn-by-watching-虎妈猫爸/

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agewisdom

I suggest adding TOFU Learn as an alternative to Skritter. I've been using it for the past two months and it works great. And it's FREE!!! [hopefully for the next 1-2 years]

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艾墨本

I’m seeing a lot of requests for tofulearn and will add it.

 

Regarding zhonga and other updates, I’ll update them soon as well. 

 

Feeling the list list is up for an overhaul. 

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agewisdom

 

35 minutes ago, 艾墨本 said:

I’m seeing a lot of requests for tofulearn and will add it.

 

Regarding zhonga and other updates, I’ll update them soon as well. 

 

Feeling the list list is up for an overhaul. 

 

A big thanks for maintaining the list. As for the dictionary section, perhaps under the PLECO entry, you may consider adding the add-on below? I find the dictionary gives a proper insight into why certain characters are written the way they do. Helpful at times, I believe.

https://www.outlier-linguistics.com/outlierblog/essentials-edition-release

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DavyJonesLocker

@艾墨本

 

I suggest  adding in the inbuilt Pleco graded readers . They have all 6 Chinese Graded Reader Series (500, 1000, 1500, .... 3000 words). 15,000 (500 word level) to 42,000 characters (3000 word level). $10 a book I think (£7.99). 

 

Advantages 

Very easy to read on a tablet , IPad etc. One click pop-up definition  of an unknown word.

Easy to add to Pleco flashcards too.

Try before you buy. 

Good value for money IMO as stories are of reasonable length 

Audio included.

 

 

Drawbacks

Every book , every story is on a similar theme. Trials and tribulations of Chinese society from the 60s to the 90s A lot of it is much less relevant in 2018 China, let alone for foreign readers. 

Choice of word frequency is questionable . Many words even on the 1000 word level are very low frequency. 

Difficult to hold interest at times. However, the easy of use on pleco makes reading much more fluid (compared to paper books) hence allowing the reader to maintain momentum even if the story is rather dull. 

 

PS: PLECO also has selections from TCB graded by HSK level. 

 

( Cc ing @mikelove in case of miss-info.)

 

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agewisdom

IMHO, I think TCB subscription would be a better way to go, rather than the graded readers. At least there's more value for money from my point of view.

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