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Improving Mandarin vocabulary in reverse (translating from English > Mandarin)


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Hello. I've been studying Mandarin for a bit over a year now and I have seen my vocabulary exponentially grow using several online tools. However, I recently realized that all these tools and software make me practice reading/understanding Chinese characters by remembering their meaning and translation. The other way around is much more challenging (e.g. I find it easier to recognize a character and find the right English translation for it than translating a word in English into Mandarin). So in a nutshell: my reading has improved a lot, but my vocabulary when speaking or writing/typing has been lagging behind. Does anyone know of any tools I can use to practice this sort of translation in reverse, i.e. from English into Mandarin? Thanks!

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I'm not sure if this is exactly what you're after, but there's an app called "Scatter Categories".  It's a word game, but I just totally ignore the game itself and just get it to list categories:



And then I just pick a category which might be worthwhile, say "things in a medicine cabinet", and write down as many of these as I can in Chinese:  牙膏、牙刷、肥皂、梳子、杯子、小毛巾、卫生巾、药物、防晒霜、洗手液、洗发水; and the things I don't know how to say in English (and look 'em up): dental floss 牙线, loofah 丝瓜, shower cap 浴帽, shaver 剃刀 / (电动)刮胡刀, moisturizer 润肤膏, conditioner 护发素, moisturizing mask 面膜.


Or you could put it into Google Image Search and find an image like this


and try to name everything in the image: 1. (?)  2. 杯子  3. (?)  4. (?)  5. antiseptic (抗菌剂)  6. 剪刀  7. 电动牙刷  8. (?)  9. ointment (软膏)  10. (?)  11. 梳子  12. 容器  13. 香水  14. pumice (浮石)  15. 维生素  16. (?)  17. razor (剃刀)  18. (?)  19. 肥皂  20. (?)  21. 眼镜  22. (?)  23. (?)  24. (?)  25. talc (滑石)

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On 9/27/2022 at 2:06 AM, TW said:

Does anyone know of any tools I can use to practice this sort of translation in reverse, i.e. from English into Mandarin?

Best if you can leave English out of the equation entirely. Think in Chinese, talk in Chinese, read and write in Chinese. Try to go back and forth between English and Chinese as little as possible. 

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