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

  • Why you should look around

    Since 2003, Chinese-forums.com has been helping people learn Chinese faster and get to China sooner. Our members can recommend beginner textbooks, help you out with obscure classical vocabulary, and tell you where to get the best street food in Xi'an. And we're friendly about it too. 

    Have a look at what's going on, or search for something specific. We hope you'll join us. 
somethingfunny

魅力汉语 ('The Charm of Chinese') MOOC

Recommended Posts

somethingfunny

I did have one other question about the bit on 啊.  It seemed like she was laying down rules for using 啊、呀、哇、哪 depending on the ending of the syllable which it comes after, but then when she had them written out, they were all 啊, but I think she said you should them as 啊、呀、哇、哪.  Did anyone pick up exactly on what was going on here?

 

Anyway, the next week is now up.  Here is a summary of the video lengths:

 

Part 1: 23:17

Part 2: 15:37

Part 3: 09:37

Part 4: 15:41

Part 5: 11:08

Part 6: 17:52

Part 7: 19:40

Share this post


Link to post
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.

Luxi

I thought she actually said they are all written 啊, though perhaps it's what I imagined she was saying. Anyway, 啊 pronunciation was news to me.

 

Part 3, so far, a lot easier - a stroll in the park by comparison to 2. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

I'm nearly through with Part 3, only section 6 to go. I didn't like this part, found it rather repetitive and not much substance, it could have been shortened to 2-3 videos.

 

Besides, the teacher makes some quite extraordinary claims about 汉语, like it is a 学少儿知多的语言... really! (groan). And several more like this. Her references - which include a speech given at the University of Tyrana by a Chinese ambassador to Albania in 2012! -  are also not so very well chosen this time. She's like a doting mother totally blind to her child's misbehaviour.

 

I think she missed an opportunity to comment on some aspects of Chinese vocabulary that foreign translators come across all the time. But then, the course is designed for Chinese students. 

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Publius

I was grossly turned off by the "在語言的運用過程中,越少的符號代表的意義越多越好,這樣就會給學習者帶來方便和快捷" part that I didn't watch further. That's precisely what's wrong with 乾、干、幹、榦 all becoming 干. ("fuck goods"? "fuck vegetables"?)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

@Publius, you missed quite a few more gems in the same vein. As, eg., Chinese is a supremely advanced language because it can express over 1,000,000 English words with only 4,000 characters :mrgreen: ...that was a speech by the Chinese ambassador in Tyrana, and a patriot. 

 

Something that intrigued me is that the teacher treated 4-character and other idiomatic phrases, and even technological expressions like 人造地球微信, as single multisyllabic words.  I'm not sure I understood right, but she seems to equate dictionary entries with single words, more in the way German  language compounds whole sentences into intractable words. Is this orthodox treatment in Mandarin Chinese or her own idiosyncratic approach? Would Taiwan deal with compounds the same way?

 

If anyone is still following this mooc, the last video in part 3 mentions a couple of features that often stick out like thorns under-foot when trying to read Chinese novels, 惯用语 and 歇后语语。Not that she said anything much to help me cope with these, I'll have to continue skipping them over. but at least I now know what to call them.

 

Now, to give credit where due, she was mercifully brief in her treatment of  成语.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
somethingfunny

I was away last weekend and have been a little under the weather since then so I have still to finish week 3 - although I agree from what I have watched that it would make good material for a 'Chinese cliche drinking game'.

 

I'll get week 3 finished off and then start with week 4, which is now available.  Here are the video lengths:

 

Part 1: 16:35

Part 2: 10:16

Part 3: 08:43

Part 4: 12:33

Part 5: 10:39

Part 6: 18:24

Part 7: 13:55

Part 8: 11:50

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

Glad to see you're still on board, @somethingfunny.

 

Grammar! I'm about to start 4.4 and enjoying it more than I thought I would. Not very demanding and not too many cliches so far.  It's bringing some structure and order to vague notions I'd unconsciously picked from reading Chinese, it may help me unravel some of those complicated sentences that make me stall when I'm trying to read.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Publius

OK I've finished part 3.

Her pronunciation of 二流子 is quite funny. It's ar4liu1zi5 for all I know.

The 六神無主 joke is funny. I mean funny haha not funny peculiar.

 

What constitutes a word is a complex question. Are 'see', 'saw', 'seen', 'seeing' one word or four? Does 'hotline' automatically become two words if I spell it differently like 'hot line'? What's happening to 'off campus' when they come before a noun, e.g. 'an off-campus apartment'?

I think counting dictionary entries is an acceptable compromise when calculating vocabulary size of a language or of a speaker.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

I've finished Part 4 and liked it very much. All my previous grammar courses have focused on particulars, my knowledge is rather fragmented. This gave me an overall picture in a kind of birds'eye view, and it was something I really needed - several loose ends 'clicked' there. I thought the teaching on the whole was very clear and balanced. Part 7 went a little into 'dry bones' territory, with list upon list of examples, but then Part 4 ended on a high note with 4.8: measure words, unmissable!

 

I noticed with some interest that there wasn't a single mention of punctuation. and the use of punctuation in the slides is rather erratic. Is it because it's seen as a relatively recent import of no great significance? Or...any theories?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
somethingfunny

I'm still playing catch up after falling behind in week 3 but I've made it through the first four parts of week 4.  Much more interesting this week! (I don't think she's said 言简意丰 even once!)

 

I'll be honest, week 3 almost broke me but this week has been much, much better.  I've always enjoyed grammar (well, Chinese grammar anyway) and a lot of the stuff so far is fairly familiar.  I remember that my Chinese ability really took off when I first had a teacher that spoke only in Chinese and taught two-hour long classes (to just one other student and I) about grammar.  I remember manically writing down 主语、谓语、宾语 in my first class and thinking I'd made a terrible mistake.

 

I got the 六神無主, but I'm afraid I didn't find it that funny.  Maybe I didn't get it after all.  I had a student once that all of his classmates called 神哥 - I thought it was because he had a seemingly unnatural ability to find an answer out of thin air in Maths class, but then it turned out that he just really overused the 六神 mosquito spray in his dorm room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi
On 4/20/2017 at 7:54 AM, somethingfunny said:

my Chinese ability really took off when I first had a teacher that spoke only in Chinese and taught two-hour long classes

This is having something of that effect on my listening ability. The last couple of weeks I've even forgotten that there are no captions and am starting to find the 0.75 speed a bit slow. Somehow, removing the distraction of Chinese captions helps speed up the processing time, my brain seems to pick up the words and come up with the meaning faster, and it doesn't stop with these videos. 

 

Week 5 is out now, and it's about characters. I already knew most of 5.1, 2 and 3. It was nice to have a short illustrated summary of the types of characters from oracle bones to the start  of print types. The teacher wasn't too jingoistic this time either, only a little - though if about Chinese characters I am inclined to forgive some triumphalism. Part 5.4 is etymology, she uses a classification that I hadn't seen before. Interesting, but I'll have to watch this video twice to understand a couple of those categories.

 

This weeks' video lengths:

Part 1 08:45
Part 2 10:28
Part 3 18:29
Part 4 19:53
Part 5 13:54
Part 6 17:36
Part 7 10:50

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
somethingfunny

I'm halfway through this week's history lesson.  A lot of stuff I've seen before, but always nice to go over it again.

 

How is everyone else doing?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

I've finished Week 6   Week 5 already :P  Agree with you about the history, it is like a favourite bedtime story for me. Also much needed practice to sharpen 听力 in my case. The last 3 sections are so-so. I failed to see any purpose in 5.5, the characters' characteristics didn't blow me over. Now, 5.6 had all sorts of interesting derivatives, most of them too clever for me, but I enjoyed the 字谜 ---- I must make time to go into it. Flag waving comes back with a vengeance in 5.7, but with some justification, I suppose.

 

I think next week may be a holiday.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
somethingfunny

Part 6 actually contained literal flag waving!  That was great.

 

Week 5 cut it a bit close for me in terms of banging on about how awesome Chinese is - I can't imagine a course like this ever cutting it in a UK university, the proportion of propaganda is just far too high.

 

It doesn't look like the next week is a holiday - the new videos are up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

It edged on 'excessive', but nowhere near as bad as in Week 3. I enjoyed learning about character puzzles and other fancy applications of 汉子, I never imagined all the meticulous pairings that went into writing couplets - most of that went way over my head. Same with the 'funny errors' lists, I'm afraid they have to be spelt out for me. But character puzzles seem doable, I was annoyed at the answers appearing so quickly.

 

The course would certainly need editing for a western audience, but if you get rid of (most of) the literal and figurative flag waving, it would make a great short introduction to / or refresher of basic Chinese linguistics for intermediate and advanced foreign students. It's well organised and covers a lot, without being too academic. I think this teacher is a much better communicator than teachers in other Chinese moocs I've done.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
somethingfunny

This week is really testing my patience.  I've only made it through the first three parts so far but it seems to be pretty much example after example of where people misinterpret something somebody says.

 

"If I say these words in a different situation they have a different meaning!"

 

"If I say these words in a different tone of voice they have a different meaning!"

 

All we need now is for her to start saying how English also has tones and if you don't believe me then what do yes2 and yes4 mean!?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi
4 hours ago, somethingfunny said:

This week is really testing my patience.

Glad it isn't only me! I struggled to keep awake through 1 to 3, they're dismally boring and irrelevant. At least the flag-waving in previous ones kept me alert for BS. Video 4 may have had a few slightly more interesting examples but by then I was already dozing and decided to stop and spend more time in the garden. Part of the problem here may be that I have no intention or need of writing more than the odd letter to friends in Chinese, so am not at all interested in correct and stylish writing. 

I'll get back to it soon, I sure want to finish the series, though this may be a good case to try the 1.25 or even 1.5% speed.

Are we 2 the last survivors from here in this mooc? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
somethingfunny

I think that 王小二 story might have been the point where I gave up on this one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi
21 hours ago, somethingfunny said:

王小二 story

:lol:

Then you'll miss the 步尚雪...步尚班 story!

I've gone through 4 and 5, both same as the first 3. The 1.25% speed in Chrome came in handy, but I think I am being a bit unfair.

If I'd sat through these lectures when I actually had to write essays for my courses at uni, I would have paid attention and benefited from them, in spite of the teacher's overly wordy explanations and cheesy stories.

I'm 1/3 of the way into 6 now,  it's about ambiguities (歧义), plenty of scope for cheesy stories, though they keep me awake having to check the dictionary to find out what's the joke.

 

Must add: part 6 video at about 15:05 has a brilliant sketch. It had me rolling with laughter - it's fast and not easy to follow but everything is written up so it can be understood using the pause button when needed.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register 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...