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Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 09/19/2019 in all areas

  1. 5 points
    Today I finished reading the novel 《第七天》 by 余华. The story centers around protagonist 杨飞 and his experiences before and after his sudden untimely death. Unlike other 余华 novels, 《第七天》 is a work of surrealist fiction. The narrative present is set in the afterlife; all major characters in the novel are dead. Like 余华’s other novels, 《第七天》 is at turns tragic, funny, morbid, and sweet. It is not his best novel, but it might be my favorite. The Chinese in 《第七天》 is not difficult to understand. The novel is easier to read than 《活着》 and 《在细雨中呼喊》, though probably harder than the dialogue-heavy 《许三观卖血记》. Demands on my time prevent me from writing a longer review. In August, I moved to Shanghai and started a new and exciting job, which keeps me very busy. I continue to read Chinese nearly every day and am confident I will meet my 1,000,000 character goal this year. Link to 《第七天》: https://www.aixdzs.com/d/117/117754/ Some statistics: Characters read this year: 602,138 Characters left to read this year: 397,862 Percent of goal completed: 60.2% List of things read: 《三八节有感》by 丁玲 (2,370 characters) 《我在霞村的时候》by 丁玲 (10,754 characters) 《在延安文艺座谈会上的讲话》by 毛泽东 (18,276 characters) 《自杀日记》by 丁玲 (4,567 characters) 《我没有自己的名字》by 余华 (8,416 characters) 《手》by 萧红 (7,477 characters) 《牛》by 沈从文 (8,097 characters) 《彭德怀速写》by 丁玲 (693 characters) 《我怎样飞向了自由的天地》by 丁玲 (2,176 characters) 《IBM Cloud文档:Personality Insights》 by IBM (25,098 characters) 《夜》by 丁玲 (4,218 characters) 《虎雏》by 沈从文 (46,945 characters) 《在巴黎大戏院》 by 施蛰存 (6,181 characters) 《分析Sonny Stitt即兴与演奏特点——以专辑《Only the Blues》中曲目 《Blues for Bags》为例》 (5,483 characters) 《一个女剧院的生活》 by 沈从文 (61,154 characters) 《致银河》 by 王小波 (17,715 characters) 《在细雨中呼喊》 by 余华 (132,769 characters) 《熊猫》 by 棉棉 (53,129 characters) 《1988:我想和这个世界谈谈》 by 韩寒 (81,547 characters) 《偶然事件》 by 余华 (20,226 characters) 《第七天》 by 余华 (84,847 characters)
  2. 5 points
    Anyone interested in getting a Classical Reading Group going? If so, what are you interested in, and how much could you handle on a weekly or monthly basis? Personally, I am interested in everything, but mostly Pre-Han materials (Such as Shijing 詩經, Chuci 楚辭, Dao Dejing 道德經).
  3. 5 points
    Hahaha. You don't. When it says 输入身份证号码 you're screwed. If has an option for 护照 then it's all good, otherwise you can forget about using whatever service you're trying to register for. I used to use an app that would generate numbers that would pass the checksum and that's how I used to get around it. But today everything's all linked together. It does seem the major apps have the option for a passport number. I read on one of those Wechat subscription accounts that Beijing will soon introduce a foreigners ID card so that we can have a number to register in these things. It's about damn time. Japan had gaijin cards forever. Those things were useful. Here we're supposed to carry around our passports on our person 24/7?
  4. 5 points
    The only people I hear saying this are people have no idea what Beijing Chinese sounds like, and I guess are imagining what it sounds like based on textbooks and news anchors they hear. Ignoring local slang (which is significantly different from standard Mandarin), Beijing Chinese is far too slurred and warbled to be considered standard Chinese. Back on topic though, there's another reason you should avoid speaking in accented words from a particular dialect/region - namely that it can sound ridiculous when you mix with them with the accent that you normally speak. Imagine for example someone speaking English with British received pronunciation, and then every few words dropping in to an accent from the Bronx NY to say a word or two, and then going back to received pronunciation. It's incredibly jarring for a native speaker to hear this sort of thing, and while it's good to learn to listen and understand these words/accents, unless you have a really good handle and understanding of how the words/accent you are speaking will interact with your regular accent you probably shouldn't try mixing them.
  5. 4 points
    In 中国大学MOOC(慕课) HSK4 Intensive Course https://www.icourse163.org/course/BLCU-1206307850 Dates: September 23, 2019 - December 30, 2019 School schedule: 3-5 hours per week Teacher is very clear and the videos are subtitled in Chinese & English. Having grammar from start endears it to me. There is a link on the announcement page explaining how to register from outside China. 速成汉语语法课堂 (Quick Chinese Grammar) https://www.icourse163.org/course/BLCU-1002536013 Dates: September 18, 2019 - December 27, 2019 School schedule: 4 hours per week English and Chinese subs. This is the 4th run of the course. If already registered with 中国大学MOOC, you can have a look at the 2nd run lessons without signing in for this year's course: https://www.icourse163.org/learn/BLCU-1002536013?tid=1003481007#/learn/content (At first glance, it looks like a nice course)
  6. 3 points
    This year I did my first online class teaching two middle-aged Chinese office workers English (from zero) using Chinese. It was really fun for me. I'd like to pick up another consistent gig that requires me to speak Chinese to perform the task. My current job is an integrated middle school. Some staff have working professional English, and some....don't. This means all meetings, emails, and school announcements are 100% in Chinese (to my 外教 collegaues' dismay). I want to more regularly attend meetings and read every email sent to us. This might be a pipedream, though, as the other day they sent a 10-page long document about fire hazards and safety procedures, and I just didn't have a single desire to keep translating those extremely subject-specific characters after page 4. My last goal is public speaking! I was asked to host our schools' 教师节 ceremony along with three other 中教. Again, 98% of staff are Chinese, and only a small handful have good enough English. This meant that the show was all in Chinese, including my script. The first time going on stage, holding my little card with 汉字 on it (with a few tone markings scattered throughout) in my left and, and the microphone in my right, endlessly shaking from the nerves of seeing hundreds of staff awaiting this 老外 to open his mouth and speak 国语. After getting through a few rough lines, it felt really exhilerating to pull it off. I'm dying to get on stage and do it again! If I could do one more before the end of the year, I'd be happy.
  7. 3 points
    This is something I'm fond of saying. Traditionally pronunciation has been a chapter at the start of the beginners textbook and then never mentioned again. It should actually be an iterative process of getting closer and closer to a goal you hopefully reach one day.
  8. 3 points
    You've got to convince the teacher that you are capable enough to play with the kind of fire that burns millions of Chinese native speakers every day. You teacher knows that, if you start inserting local dialect accidentally into regular speech, most Chinese people will think you're a bit dumb. I personally believe you've got to prove yourself a relatively adept code-switcher to the teacher first. And I've previously made headway by saying "I'm worried I'll pick up dialect I hear in the streets without realising that it's dialect, therefore, please first teach me the perfect putonghua of this sentence and then, once I can say it really well, teach me how the locals say it." Also maybe there can be a bit of a minefield over your teacher's status. One example could be that you are perhaps asking him the local dialect of a city, but he grew up outside the city, and so you're either asking him to confess that he's not a local, or you're asking him to pretend he's local (and therefore higher status than he really is). Both could be a bit embarassing. Or: the teacher might not be 100% confident in his own putonghua, so if anyone else found out he was teaching you non-standard Chinese, he might be criticised. Finally (apologies for long-windedness): I think that the tradition of teaching in China, which may still persist, I don't know, is that a teacher is reponsible for your development, and not just a gun-for-hire to impart certain skills you request, which might make a reluctance to teach certain areas seem more stubborn or unreasonable to the student than it does to the teacher.
  9. 2 points
    Bumping this - been meaning to rewatch Kung Fu Hustle for ages, just downloaded it and very nearly watched the entire thing during my "I'll just check the file works" check. I've not watched it for ten years, but the instant the accountant guy pulls out his lighter with shaky hands - giggling like a child. Do watch.
  10. 2 points
    When I ask about a Chinese non-standard pronunciation, I get told by many people the 'standard' pronunciation. Yup. I know the standard pronunciation. I am asking about the accent. Why are mainland Mandarin speakers so obtuse about a foreigner learning the nuances of a regional accent? I think most English speakers are pretty open about accents in English unlike Chinese speakers and Mandarin.
  11. 2 points
    I am impressed by the amount of time and effort you have put in to preparing these materials.
  12. 2 points
    What should I do then? I aim to learn standard pronunciation. I first began my study with a beijinger. This is also the accent I personally like. BUT, I LIVE in Guangzhou. Most people here, even those not native to gz, speak very southern chinese. So do I try to speak like the people i encounter on the street everyday? or like the textbook and my wife(from Heilongjiang), who speak standard northern mandarin? A dilemma. I remember reading once, Chris Parker saying(something to the effect of) he was living in Taiwan but strictly working on speaking with a Beijing accent, and it was a constant fight, that he shouldve just spoken with the accent of the people around him. *I dont want to misquote him, i will see if i can find a link to that later. I find when i say “在这儿就可以了” the reaction is subtly not as good as if is say "这里" or 公园儿 vs. 公园, but thats how my mother in law says it, and i like to immitate her, thats how i hear it in the drama on TV. Furthermore, its the sound i enjoy. Its a little irritating. For me, ive decided just to imitate the textbook for the most part , go for standard mandarin for my speech, try to be good at hearing all of it, enjoy noting tge differences and not get too hung up about it.
  13. 2 points
    I'm studying Italian, German, and French every day besides Chinese. I guess French and German are more maintaining because I already have a high level now and my study consists of a lot of listening and following courses based on "laddering" (not using your mother tongue, for example Italian for French speakers, German for French speakers and vice-versa) and several long skype conversations on the weekend. Italian is more active studying, but also involving a lot of listening. I spend more time on it because my level is lower. I use or work on 6 languages every day actually. English because I'm an English teacher in Spain and speaking to my daughter, Spanish because I live in Spain and my wife is from Spain so our home language is Spanish, and the others by listening and study. I do get some strange "cross overs" in my brain, especially after long conversations of 1-2 hours or more. A few French conversation partners have told me that I am speaking French with a German rhythym sometimes. My English spelling ability has greatly deteriorated and sometimes I can't remember precise words or terms in English, my own language! I wouldn't say I mix them up when speaking, but what happens is that as I'm speaking French for example, the same words in German flash through my head and vice-versa. I also speak Catalan because I lived there for 8 years but I never ever use it and that was 17 years ago, and yet at odd moments when speaking a Romance language, Catalan words pop into my head and I'm like "where did THAT come from!". The strangest cross over is when Chinese words or character images cross my mind when speaking another language, like looking for the word "delicious" in German in conversation (lecker) and having 好吃 come into my head. I really feel for anyone who has also studied Japanese and has lost it to some extent. So much work went into that language, and I think speaking that language would be an amazing accomplishment. A new teacher my academy hired this year has had just that experience. She put a lot into it and ended up abandoning it because of family, work, and time constraints.
  14. 2 points
    Davy, I also study Japanese I think the term you are looking for is "language interference". My Japanese is much better than my Chinese. When I first started studying Chinese, yes, my Japanese ability interfered with my Chinese. But my foundation in Japanese was strong enough so I could put Japanese completely aside and study Chinese. I think the only way to study a second language is to already have a solid foundation in the first language. Otherwise language interference will occur. I studied French in high school, then took Japanese in college. When my college Japanese teacher would ask me a question in Japanese, I would answer in French! I had to completely block out French in order to study Japanese.
  15. 2 points
    CN to Roll Out Real-Time Passport Authentication for Foreigners https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/_WNNtAqECYJC7h3Mm3QoQA I registered using the standalone Mobike app when I arrived in May this year, even using a foreign credit card, but they've since revoked that ability. @Wahed I presume you're getting a Chinese bank account so you should be OK once you have it. (Until you do it's a big inconvenience.) I was never asked for passport at that time, but more apps that require payments seem to be requiring "real name authentication".
  16. 2 points
    I've noticed in some of the Cambridge English tests (such as PET, KET, FCE), they use a range of accents for the listening exercises; Scottish, Welsh, Yorkshire, even Europeans speaking English. I remember some students saying "Why is their English so bad?", because in China people focus so much on pronunciation and getting the perfect British or American accent, so much so that they start to sound robotic (pronouncing word by word, but no rhythm or flow). In the real world there are tonnes of English speakers with different accents and even people who use English as a second language. Using different accents for listening is a great idea! That's my biggest problem with Chinese materials. I swear every listening book I buy is the SAME man and woman speaking. There's no variation and it's all so standard. It got to a point where I thought my listening CD was a computerised voice like you get on GPS, had to double check with my wife, but it turned out it was real. Living in China has really helped pick apart differences in accent, and I even surprised my wife during a trip to Sanya when I said "Oh, the people in the lift with us were from Hangzhou, right?", but just being so familiar with the nuances. I really can't imagine the damage it does to a student's confidence when they've been studying in their home country for years, to suddenly not be able to understand a real Chinese conversation. Let's be honest, how many taxi drivers, sellers at the market or small shop owners speak standard mandarin?
  17. 1 point
    Hello 柯林, I just scanned through an electronic copy of 《小时代1.0折纸时代》 on my computer. Yes, the novel seems like a step up in difficulty from 《活着》 or 《许三观卖血记》. I would not call it hard, though. It looks like standard popular fiction-level writing to me. Perhaps switching authors, genres, and narrative settings all at once is contributing to the increase in difficulty here. I bet 郭敬明 uses many words in 《小时代》 that do not appear in the 余华 novels you read. The authors have very different styles. The novels also have very different characters and settings. 《小时代》 is about tony, upwardly mobile young adults in 21st-century Shanghai; 《活着》 and 《许三观卖血记》 are about dirt-poor families in small 20th-century villages. That difference would partly explain a large number of new words. Geiko gave a short review of 《小时代》 in this post from the “What are you reading?” thread. He said the book was “an easy read and not too cheesy.”
  18. 1 point
    The intermediate readers provide a lot of reading material, introduce 400 new characters and 2500 words which will also appear in the advanced readers. I would recommend not to skip the intermediate readers, the learning curve will be smoother. In the beginning reading dialogs will still help you primarily with reading and not much with talking anyway.
  19. 1 point
    "Are you writing a story in Chinese? Or translating an existing story in Chinese?" I still can't figure out an answer to this very basic question.
  20. 1 point
    No, he's writing his thesis on the languages of Chinese, Italian and Russian business letters. I think gathering evidence and examples is exactly why he's posted here.
  21. 1 point
    Singapore! Didn't see that one coming.
  22. 1 point
    Nailing it. At 936 km for the year, on course for 1300+ km, been running 4 times a week for the last 6 months and getting PBs for 5k and below. Less consistent on other goals, but still doing fairly well.
  23. 1 point
    I'm guessing he means something like the following - I lived in Latin America for a while and did interpreting in the US. I haven't spoken Spanish regularly in about a year in a half. Every once in a while, I'll meet a Spaniard or someone from Latin America and try to jump right back in to Spanish. On at least two occasions, I accidentally added a 吗 at the end of a question out of habit. I then was talking about how often I go to study Chinese, and used the "every week one two time" structure as opposed to the "once or twice a week".
  24. 1 point
    I somehow thought that the State Administration of Foreign Exchange ("SAFE") now keeps tracks of overseas spending and withdrawals, and that SAFE is set up only to track Chinese IDs, not passport numbers. Thus Unionpay and WeChat/Alipay accounts not opened with Chinese IDs can't be used overseas. But I'm not saying this as Gospel.
  25. 1 point
    Hi she is now sorted. The person who did it was a Chinese friend of a friend and they did not have her as a contact so it doesn’t have to be somebody already in her friends list. Thanks to everybody who replied / helped.
  26. 1 point
    I used to hire a native speaker who would listen to my 朗讀 (complete with pinyin transcript) & she would highlight which words were mispronounced (i.e. you used tone 3 instead of tone 1). Painful but worthwhile.
  27. 1 point
    That's the theory. In practice, some people do have difficulty. https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/58589-comprehending-northern-versus-southern-accented-mandarin/?tab=comments#comment-455336 Or here in this blog discussion "I was watching a show with a singer from HK the other day, and the Mandarin was even harder to understand than usual because of the heavy Cantonese accent!" (By another poster). The poster was watching GEM who I personally think doesn't have a strong Cantonese accent and whose parents came from the mainland - Shanghai I think. Great point. At that point my understanding of standard Mandarin was nothing like good enough to not be thrown off by a different accent, nor to distinguish where an accent was from. Having heard GEM speak Cantonese my immediate, and rather embarrassing assumption was that she was from Hong Kong! 2 years on and my understanding is still not good enough to distinguish where exactly an accent is from, although I am in general able to understand much more southern accented Chinese now than I was. If I think about England, there are times when a really thick accent can be difficult to understand, even as a native speaker. If this is the case for our tiny little country, surely it must be even more applicable to China. One of my teachers told us a story about him getting ripped off down South, as he failed to make the distinction between 十 and 四. I'm sure that as one improves their understanding of standard Mandarin, it will of course become easier to understand accented Chinese, but if there are still occasional struggles for natives, then I'm not going to lose a ton of sleep over it at this point in my language learning journey.
  28. 1 point
    Oh this is exciting, I have been so busy. I have now had both my eyes done and have been given the all clear and this is just what I need to get me back to studying. Thank you for sharing.
  29. 1 point
    The person you use as "the practical example" doesn't have a good grasp on Chinese. He's in his second year of his Chinese language course, still has (had) trouble when reading middle-school novels. And just about to start his 3rd year. This person is nowhere near fluent enough to pose as a practical example. He literally said so: The whole discussion took place at a time, two years ago, when said person was still going through elementary speaking and listening coursework. Such a person has nowhere near the comprehension level that you'd expect a fluent speaker of Chinese to have. I'd prefer a more concrete example of someone who has passed the HSK and who still unable to make head or tail of accents on, for example, TV. Plus, I could literally recommend you Chinese study materials for learning specific regional accents. But, again, those aren't for students of Chinese as a second language. They're meant for the domestic market. They're meant for students that have already passed a university degree and are studying said accent for a acting role or to work as a cultural ambassador through the government. Those materials aren't meant for us. Heck, they don't even have an audio tape to tell you how to pronounce it; it's all done through phonetics.
  30. 1 point
    Agree! Not bad at all. I've always heard that using an ATM in the lobby of a bank is safer than using one which is just located in a convenience store or shopping mall if something goes wrong. This little event served as a good reminder to me to think about that.
  31. 1 point
    Not just the transcripts---the entire book (in Traditional Chinese edition) is up for download as a PDF at the companion site.
  32. 1 point
    I'm a bilingual native speaker in Chinese and English, and I want to help YOU learn Chinese with fun and relaxed videos! If you're sick of traditional classroom teaching, then this is the channel for you Search "ABChinese" on YouTube, and don't forget to subscribe to stay notified! https://youtu.be/qMdfXC-eh3Q **NEW Videos every Thursday @ 5:30 pm CT
  33. 1 point
    Agree. Thank about "audiobooks" in Chinese for people studying Chinese at an intermediate level. Not "simplified" or "dumbed-down" texts, just material that is read clearly and then linked to a transcript. That would be of interest to me. If the idea catches on and you get enough subscribers to indicate a lively interest, then find a second reader, perhaps a female, and record some dialogues and conversations. Some could be from "real life" and some could be from literary sources. The Pleco dictionary on my phone will read out individual Chinese words. I can even select a male voice or a female voice. Having another on-line source in which someone just reads out words would be of zero interest to me. Need to search for innovative ways to help learners; need to find a need that has not already been filled over and over. And I hope that you will keep in mind lots of people studying Chinese are not 19-year old university students. Don't aim everything at them.
  34. 1 point
    For me, L2-L3 interference seems to happen most often when I can't quite recall a word (or didn't learn it yet)... usually a preposition or conjunction or something, rather than nouns and verbs. I still occasionally get German and Hindi words popping up unbidden. I've also had Chinese leaking into my French, so I'm not sure if it ever stops based on level, but wonder if instead you learn how to manage it?
  35. 1 point
    Hmm. I am not sure about just reading out words. I realize I wasn't helpful about intermediate learning material. What I have seen is some people post interviews where the same question has been asked of a few people with different accents for training listening skills. What you could do is grab a 3 minutes long dialogue from a TV program that has Mandarin which is slightly non-standard, block out the subtitles so that the viewer can't any clues from the words and then explain what dialogue said,; explain how they said it differently to standard Mandarin. The beauty of that is there is always material around in a TV drama - e.g. someone talking with their mouth full or a bit drunk etc. Even voice over the dialogue so we hear two versions. It's just an idea off the top of my head. I would rather you not waste time on beginner videos. You won't make any impact.
  36. 1 point
    Recently took the HSK 6 for the first time. My thoughts: The listening section seemed much more difficult than the practice tests; not because the content was more difficult to understand, but because the questions appeared to be more specific, the pacing was different from my practice, the characters were smaller and somewhat pixelated on the screen and the test was early in the morning, so I had limited sleep the night before. The reading section felt somewhat easier and the passages looked shorter (could have just been the layout of the actual exam vs. the practice tests). I finished with 5 - 10 minutes left over. The passage for the writing exam was more difficult than the practice exams, but the input method was better than I expected it to be. Computer only glitched and froze a few times for 5 -10 seconds. I believe I could have either failed the test or gotten top marks. I cannot predict at all how I did on it.
  37. 1 point
    I think that your answer is here (scroll down to 'Examples when to use 对 and not 跟"). I can't decide whether this sentence means "The headteacher's response to you was very satisfactory" or "The headteacher was very satisfied with your response". I think it could be interpreted either way, but I'm willing to be corrected.
  38. 1 point
    You can think of it as an arrow pointing from 校长 to 你的回答. Or if you want to deal in English, you can think of it as something like "with respect to," "regarding," etc. But better to visualize than drop into English. And the sentence should be parsed 校长//对/你的回答//非常满意. Since all runs together in the typical written Chinese sentence, developing a knack for parsing is really important.
  39. 1 point
    Although I have a Chinese phone and downloaded WeChat in China, it nonetheless shows the major pages in English. Not sure why, maybe because English is set as the default language on my phone. Not sure why this is such a big deal, either. Seriously, if you want to get by in China you have to be flexible.
  40. 1 point
    Is your phone set to Chinese mode, or is Wechat set to Chinese? That could be why it's not offering passport mode.
  41. 1 point
    First time buying a graded reader, bought My Teacher is a Martian, Kindle version on Amazon. Love it! Well done on all fronts. Can't wait to read the other 150 and 300 character level ones. @Rufus If you're out there, I'm curious, do you recommend reading it silently or out loud? https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/44660-eliminating-subvocalisation/ Would you mind putting in your two cents as a publisher?
  42. 1 point
    The vast majority of people I know and.or have worked among struck me as really comfortable with their native version of Chinese, speak it with pride and enjoyment too; not to say they don't acknowledge the utility of Mandarin, especially for the socially mobile, but no sense that their hometown Chinese isn't as good - I mean, they might say it, but clearly don't think it. Remember some years ago a radio programme that just reviewed restaurants and had a phone in in Chengdu became wildly popular just because it allowed the use of local speech that is otherwise quite restricted on broadcast media. Naturally this comes out mostly when you're back home surrounded by people who share your topolect, if you're the only Yibin boy in the dorm at some shitty job out east you might be a bit more circumspect. Though always enjoy hearing educated friends here in the capital with spot-on Mandarin happily code-switching on the phone to family and friends from home.
  43. 1 point
    Like @889 said, the 10-year "L" visa for US passport holders currently only comes with 60-day length of stay. I tried to get 90 days and was told it was just plainly no longer available. (Houston Consulate; not New York.) You could phone one or two visa agents in the New York area and ask about this just to confirm. Sure would be sweet to have 90 days length of stay per entry.
  44. 1 point
    I believe you will find acting coaches more amenable to talking in or about accents than language teachers. Don't know if those exist in China. But think about it, if you're American you encountered a Chinese person (or other foreigner) in the US trying to learn how to speak like a Bostonian or a Southerner, wouldn't that feel kind of strange to you?
  45. 1 point
    I guess probably because having standard Mandarin is a sign of good education, and people are embarrassed to acknowledge not reaching the standard. Non-standard Mandarin is to some extent stigmatised in China. I don't know for sure, but I suspect it is also something that most speakers are not even fully conscious of. Ask, for example, any Shanghainese person whether they can distinguish -n and -ng, and most will regard you with disdain for calling their Mandarin into question. Yet, if you watch them write pinyin, quite clearly they (obviously a generalisation) have no clue. On a related note, I often found it frustrating that many Chinese people are coy about their local dialect. If you try to get someone to say something in their local dialect, often they flat-out refuse, or say something so short that they may as well not have said it. It is like people are also embarrassed about speaking their local dialect to outsiders. (Here, I'm talking about the smaller dialects - not Cantonese and Shanghainese which people are usually proud of.)
  46. 1 point
    Hi there ... Martin Symonds here. All the mp3 can be downloaded from my Dropbox account. Just send me an email and I'll reply straightaway. Martin (now retired in U.K.)
  47. 1 point
    If you had a HSK2, you're not starting from zero. Yes, it is technically still a very low level, but you have a prior knowledge in Chinese, at least basic concepts how the language works, and that is a huge advantage compared to anyone who is starting from scratch, so you can't belittle its impact on your overall goal. And I agree with the guys above that at a certain point in your learning progress, you will have to decide between making progress for passing the exam and making progress to actually learn (and retain) something (this are my wise words after two professional exams). In my view, HSK 6 is a bad fetish among Chinese learners. A lot of unnecessary vocab is included there, and even with learning all of those, your Chinese will not be on a native level, so consuming actual native content will still be a struggling experience. Having a good base of HSK5 plus vocab knowledge of your professional field would carry you much better than knowing the n+1 chengyu from the HSK6 word list, but this is just my 2 cents. Good luck with it.
  48. 1 point
    Is it Hanping Chinese HSK (1-6) deck? Best do it on PC then Download the deck (Hanping_Chinese_HSK_1-6.apkg), double click to import into ANKI Open Browser Click on 'Hanping Chinese HSK' deck (left hand side) click on any card in the window. (The top window bar (right hand side) should show "deck:Hanping Chinese HSK" ) Select All (CTRL A) click SUSPEND, all rows will turn yellow in the window bar add the text 'tag:HSK1' so it will show "deck:Hanping Chinese HSK" tag:HSK1 600 rows should be displayed (150 of the HSK cards x 4 card types ) Select All again (CTRL A) click SUSPEND again, all 600 rows will back to white (i.e. unsuspended) when you want HSK2 included as well, just change the search to "deck:Hanping Chinese HSK" tag:HSK1 OR tag:HSK2 (1200 cards will be shown) and click SUSPEND (to toggle the 'suspend' action on /off) and you get the idea ....
  49. 1 point
    I loved this whole reply, and we've agreed with you about every aspect of this from the moment we started making this course. There are some details in your post I think are debatable, but it's not necessary, I just wanted to get this across: We make it extraordinarily clear to people throughout the course that 80% is your foundation and you have a much longer road ahead if you want to approach native fluency. Now, you might say, 'but you don't make this clear in the one-sentece marketing claim.' That's correct, and hence the free trial & 30-day money back guarantee. So far only two people have asked for their money back, and so it's fair to say that the people who didn't ask for their money back weren't under the impression that they would be nearly done after the foundation. I think the reason they stay in the course is that the following is true about pre & post-foundation building: Your State as a Learner with Zero or Little Foundation (non-exhaustive): Everything is fog. Your understanding of pronunciation isn't strong enough to be able to pick out recognizable sounds in your listening material You don't know what characters are, how you might figure out the pronunciation, or even simple components. You don't have a systematic methodology for acquiring a new character You don't know what a Chinese word is, much less how the characters within the word relate to each other You can't read anything, so there's no chance of determining a word through context. Naturally, without characters or words, you have no sense of sentence structure There is virtually no pleasure that can be derived from reading There aren't any situations where you can successfully communicate without relying entirely on body language You've not built up healthy study habits, and thus all momentum must be self-derived Unless you used it before, you are unfamiliar with how to use SRS (most people). Your State as a Learning After you Build your 80% Foundation: There's a lot of light breaking through the fog. You understand the principles of how to pronounce every Mandarin sound, thus increasing the likelihood of recognizing more of the sounds produced in the listening material. You can even start to associate purely auditory input with characters. You know hundreds of components and understand how they can have semantic or phonetic functions, therefore providing a layer of context for most unknown characters. You haven't learned every component, but you've mastered the ones you are most likely to see in a new character (Pareto principle again). You have a methodology for quickly committing a new character to memory. You know how to make an SRS flashcard out of it. The characters learned to construct the top 1000 words are the component characters in another 4000 lower frequency words. Because you have a strong sense of how the characters in compound words related to each other, there's a high probability of being able to understand those 4000 words, especially in context. There is a lot of content you can read, and the resources available for graded material are continually expanding (including the tailored content from MB). As a result, you increase the likelihood of understanding an unknown word through your keen sense of sentence structure combined with your knowledge of components and how words related to each other. Sidenote: @imron This is a refutation of your claim that someone has "no idea" what the remaining unknown 20% of the sentence is. If they know one or more of the characters in the word, some (or all) of the components, or even what part of speech it likely is based on sentence structure, that's far more knowledge than "no idea." I find this to be Chinese's primary 优势 compared to English; there's just so much more context once you have a foundation. To be clear, I'm not saying they will fully understand, but their chances of either getting the gist or entirely understanding the missing parts of the sentence are far higher than they would be in English. Not only can you derive pleasure from reading, but you start to feel how Chinese can change how you think. There are loads of situations where you can successfully communicate. If you don't know how to say something, you have the vocabulary necessary to explain what you mean. "Hey, do you guys sell those big boxes you put in the kitchen to keep things cold?" You can't communicate well in every situation, but getting by in China is far more accessible. You've already built up enough Myelin Sheaths around your neurons associated with the habit of daily study that it's not difficult to continue. The momentum is already gained, just keep going. Thanks so much for taking the time to write such a thoughtful response @imron, and to everyone who has politely engaged in the content of the course and how we're presenting it. I'm going to keep working all day every day on it, and it's never going to be perfect, but I know that it's helping people get through the "everything is fog" phase very effectively.
  50. 1 point
    I used this book in my second year of learning Chinese, in which my main goal was to get to the point where we could recognize roughly 3,000 characters. I think the book is great for that purpose, and I like Ann's style. My ability to recognize character went up dramatically (I think it's fair to say). However, due to my own poor strategy of making this book the bread and butter of my studying, I could recoginze a lot, if not almost all, characters when reading a newspaper, but I didn't know how they made up words, or how they functioned grammatically. So, I'd still strongly recommend the book to self-learners, but I think it is best used while also using other learning materials that emphasize word acquisition, reading, listening, and other more well rounded skills.
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