Chinese Women, Asian Women, Online Dating & Things Chinese and Asian
Thread

Learning to speak or read Chinese?

From: Australia New South Wales Port Macquarie @BrianW Time : 2016-05-19 05:19:31

I'm new here. I want to start by complimenting you all on what seems to be a great community. I haven't seen another website where men and women are so happy to provide advice and information to help each other succeed at an international romance. It's especially helpful to hear the ladies points of view!

So, to my question! Obviously the language barrier is an issue for some ladies, and I would hate to think I missed out on a great relationship for lack of understanding each other.

Are there any resources for learning Chinese that others have used successfully? Obviously the best way to learn is in China speaking it everyday, but a head start before I travel would also be good, and with my "skills" at learning languages will likely provide unending amusement!

Comments to Thread
(Showing 1 to 11 of 11) 1
From: China 吉林(ji lin) 长春(chang chun ) @Map1 Time : 2016-05-20 21:46:47 #1
@BrianW The joke of course is that if you want to improve your Chinese, get a Chinese girlfriend. My girlfriend is a university English teacher, so we communicate using mostly English. Mandarin is a difficult language to learn. I studied for two years in Shanghai while in my 30s. The focus was on reading and writing. Now in my 50s I'm trying to learn again with the focus on speaking and listening. We have one-on-one tutoring besides classroom studies. For practical Chinese, I'd recommend the book, "Chinese 10 Minutes Everyday." I've also heard that the Rosetta Stone program is good too.
From: Australia New South Wales Port Macquarie @BrianW Time : 2016-05-22 18:50:40 #2
Thank you @Map1 Yes that is a good joke! Maybe standing on a corner in Beijing looking lost and confused is an untapped method for meeting a woman!

I'm probably more interested in speaking and listening, although I have heard that learning to read and write helps you understand better. Maybe on my 120th birthday I'll be honoured as a great Chinese calligrapher, but probably not :)

I'll check out the Rosetta Stone software. There is an advertisement on this website for Rocket Chinese. Has anyone used it?
From: China 山东(shan dong) 济宁(ji ning ) @paulfox1 Time : 2016-05-25 06:02:14 #3
I recommended Rocket Chinese to John Abbot a few years ago. I have used it myself and can honestly say that it worked for me.

I'm not going to give the old 'sales pitch', but I researched many sites before settling on Rocket.

It seemed to have a good reputation with lots of positive reviews.
It teaches you 'everyday language' too. You know, conversational stuff

This was a few years ago now but I still have access to it, after paying a one-off joining fee.

Yes. Rocket Chinese is definitely an excellent starting point.
From: China 上海(shang hai) 上海(shang hai) @daisylee Time : 2016-05-25 14:41:09 #4
my friend can speak five different languages fluently except Chinese though he already work and live in China more than ten years . he said it is shame for him can not speak Chinese even he always has nice and sexy girlfriend live together , anyway he can say 'good morning , Hello , you are nice , ' especially 'bill please ' in Chinese . Howeven , NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE if you really want to learn , it will be done . :):)
From: Australia New South Wales Port Macquarie @BrianW Time : 2016-05-26 17:11:22 #5
@daisylee, @paulfox1 thank you for your feedback and encouragement.

I will give the Rocket Chinese a go. I'm sure within a month I will have lots of funny stories for a blog :)
From: United States California San Diego @JoyFly Time : 2016-05-31 01:50:53 #6
Info for those who are interested in learning Chinese:

http://www.rosettastone.com/learn-chinese

Some of my American friends have tried...and found it's the best way to learn Chinese.

However, learning a new language is not a easy task, and you have to invest lost of time & energy...
as long as you never give up, you can improve it day by day. (rock)
From: Australia Queensland Brisbane @Barry1 Time : 2016-06-01 13:37:29 #7
For anyone interested in the rigors of learning Chinese, here's an excerpt from one of my blog articles

https://blog.chinalovematch.net/blog/article/Is-China-a-Good-Place-to-Live-for-a-Westerner-Part-5-of-the-Teaching-in-China-Series



"I figured enthusiastically if somewhat naively that if I could master basic Pinyin (Chinese language using Western style characters rather than the chicken scratching type of alphabet), life would become so much smoother here. Makes sense, right?


Wrong!


To my consternation, I quickly learnt that Chinese language has four basic tones. One can say a word with a barely noticeable incorrect tone and the result can have an entirely different meaning to that intended. Westerners continually grappled in exasperation with these subtle tonal differences as they attempted to learn Mandarin. For Chinese however, voice tones had been force fed, hammered and inculcated into them since early childhood, so it was second nature to them. Some impolite inhabitants smirked or outright laughed at stupid Westerners' inability to comprehend these.


For example, I recently met a teenage boy here named “Yung Wei”. This isn’t the correct Chinese spelling, but is spelt how it phonetically sounds to a native English speaker.


“Please be careful how you speak to him, Barry” Tina advised me. I then repeated his name to her several times. Easy enough, right?


“No, no, no!” Tina exclaimed. "Your pronunciation is wrong. What you are saying isn't his name, but actually means “impotent” or “soft penis”. He'll be offended if you address him like this!”


So I repeated Yung Wei’s name many times to Tina. Half the time I called him by his right name using the correct tone - and half the time inadvertently I called him a soft cock! Yet the variation in tone was almost imperceptible to my Western ears. But it was of critical importance in the real world.


I then practised some other Chinese words but continually found the same annoying thing. I wasn’t using the correct tone or voice inflection most of the time. Thus if I spoke to a native using my poor pronunciation, they’d have no idea what I was trying to say to them. Because tone of the words - how you say them, not just what you say - was crucial. Worse still, a Chinese won't necessarily accommodate or make allowances for tonal errors, just because they're uttered by an ignorant Westerner. So one needed to be correct and precise at all times. Near enough just wasn't good enough in day to day communication with citizens who weren't aware they were talking to a blundering gringo with imprecise Mandarin ability.


SUPER HARD


Feeling quite deflated, the next step in attempting to learn basic Chinese was to research on the internet how difficult it was to master according to the experts. Maybe it was just me that was finding it so troublesome? To my dismay, both the US State Department and the Foreign Service Institute ranked Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Japanese and Arabic all in the “super hard” or “exceptionally hard” category.


Oh, my Godfather!


I’ve thus given up the idea of learning Chinese. It’s just too damn difficult. I’ve no doubt that it could be accomplished eventually, but not before many months of study had passed. Two years of regular training around twenty hours per week - plus live there for a few months in order to practice - had been quoted by the State Dept in order to achieve reasonable fluency. A friend of mine said don't bother with this, just spend an hour per day on it. But even this was a big commitment, given everything else occurring around me. I just didn’t have the time - nor the inclination - to spare. It's something I can live without. I have better things to do than spend ten or twenty hours per week - every week - learning Chinese.


BYE BYE, MISS AMERICAN PIE


An annoying song kept rattling around in my head. How did it go again?


Bye bye Miss American Pie


Drove my Chevy to the levy


But the levy was dry


"Miss American Pie" in this instance means the Mandarin language. "Drove my Chevy to the levy but the levy was dry" refers to my futile hopes to learn it.


This places me in the situation of living in a country where constantly I have no real idea of what’s going on around me, unless I’m with Tina. Sure, the big stuff unfolding around me is comprehensible, but all the interesting minutiae of life and culture are lost. It's akin to living in a world where I can see multiple rainbows as a whole but frustratingly cannot discern their colours, marvel at their vibrancy and richness. I intuitively know that I'm missing out on a helluva lot, chronically constrained by my phonetic ignorance and this continually exasperated me."
From: Australia South Australia Adelaide @melcyan Time : 2016-06-03 15:37:29 #8
@BrianW
I agree with many of the posts here. Rocket Chinese is a good entry point for learning Chinese. You need to do at least one hour per day. You need to remember that Pinyin is only the SOUND of Mandarin.

Barry points out that tones are fundamental to learning mandarin. Aim for accurate tones right from the start. Try to learn your words as part of a tone pair. There are 20 different tone pairs. Yo yo Chinese has a free lesson on this.

Try to find at least 3 learning Chinese apps for your smart phone. Whenever you know you have 5 minutes to spare, use an app. It makes waiting to see the doctor a productive time. Also it pays to have a weekly language partner or teacher. Italki and HelloTalk are good resources for this. Good luck!
From: Australia New South Wales Port Macquarie @BrianW Time : 2016-06-04 18:46:33 #9
Thank you all!

Now that Barry has scared the bejeesus out of me, at least I'm going in with my eyes and ears open!

It sounds like having a practice partner is almost essential. I have a few friends/acquaintances here that are native speakers, maybe I can impose on them to help :)

I appreciate all your feedback and advice, it sounds like it will be an interesting journey!

Brian
From: United Kingdom @good88person Time : 2016-06-11 22:48:45 #10
@daisylee @JoyFly

GOOD88PERSON'S ADVICE FOR CHINESE WOMEN
-----------------------------------------------------------------

@daisylee
said ........ girlfriend ... not wife
..... this means "free sex" ..... not marriage !
"No security" for Chinese woman.
"No sincerity" for Chinese woman.
"No LONG TERM FUTURE" for Chinese woman.

------------------------------------------------------------

The best way for a foreigner
to
TELL a Chinese woman
that
"he loves her"
is to ........
MARRY THE CHINESE WOMAN !

The Chinese woman should
INVESTIGATE and FIND OUT
if ........
the foreign boyfriend is ... SERIOUS about MARRIAGE
or
the Chinese woman is
WASTING HER YEARS OF YOUTHFUL BEAUTY on a jerk ( bad person )

------------------------------------------------------------

It is
stupid stupid stupid .......
for a Chinese woman
to "live with a boyfriend"
and
give "free sex" , "free cooking" , "free cleaning" , "free washing clothes"
and
DESTROY HER REPUTATION
as a "RESPECTABLE ... HIGH QUALITY CHINESE WOMAN"

...... and .......

the foreign boyfriend ( or Chinese boyfriend )
is
NOT SERIOUS about MARRIAGE.
From: United Kingdom @good88person Time : 2016-06-11 22:54:06 #11
@BrianW @daisylee @JoyFly

GOOD88PERSON'S ADVICE FOR CHINESE WOMEN
and
GOOD88PERSON'S ADVICE FOR
LEARNING "5000 YEARS OF CHINESE CULTURE"
-----------------------------------------------------------------

The best way for a foreigner
to
"SHOW HIS SINCERITY" ( to a Chinese girlfriend )
and
RESPECT ( for the Chinese race and "5,000 years of Chinese culture" )
and
DETERMINATION ( to MARRY a Chinese woman )
is ........
learn to speak Chinese.

----------------------------------------

ExPats ( "Out of their Fatherland" )
who could NOT BE BOTHERED
to learn Chinese ( and a little bit of "5,000 years of Chinese culture" )
are just "jerking around" (literally) with Chinese girlfriends ,
for "free sex" , for a few months !

-------------------------------------

Chinese Idiom 口是心非
means ........ Mouth says yes. Heart says no.
means ........ The mouth is telling lies and falsehoods !

ExPats ( "Out of their Fatherland" )
who "sweet talk" you with 1,000 ENGLISH words ........
probably ... has a .....
heart that says "NO MARRIAGE" !

ExPats ( "Out of their Fatherland" )
who "sweet talk" you with 200 CHINESE words ........
probably ... has a .....
heart that says "I am SERIOUS and SINCERE about China ... and ... MARRIAGE" ! ! !

Is your foreign boyfriend "sweet talking" you
in CHINESE or ENGLISH ?

----------------------------------------

Your foreign boyfriend is GOOD "HUSBAND MATERIAL" ........
if your foreign boyfriend knows 50 pieces of Chinese idioms ( out of the THOUSANDS of Chinese Idioms ) ........
like ........
口是心非 Mouth says yes. Heart says no.
or
叶公好龙 Lord Ye loves dragons ........ Lord Ye PRETENDS to love dragons ........ Lord Ye does NOT love dragons ........
Lord Ye is scared of dragons ......... Foreign boyfriend PRETENDS to love you ........ Foreign boyfriend does NOT love you
........ Foreign boyfriend is scared of "living alone" without "free sex".

--------------------------------------

Please buy the cheap ( 5 American dollars ) ENGLISH book called ........
The Journey of Xiao Tao : With 366 Most Frequently Used Chinese Idioms to Kick the Chinese Learning Difficulty Away

and ........

you will understand ........
why this Chinaman prattle ( talk ) on ........ about ....... "5,000 years of Chinese culture".

-----------------------------------------

Please read ........
The Chinese Code of Success = Maxims by Zhu Zi 朱子治家格言
this is FREE ( NO MONEY ) at ........
https://stulanglaut.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/the-chinese-code-of-success-maxims-by-zhu-zi-%E6%9C%B1%E5%AD%90%E6%B2%BB%E5%AE%B6%E6%A0%BC%E8%A8%80/

Some of his Maxims sound odd ........ until I explain his maxims !

For example .......
Maxim 28 = One should not recklessly kill livestock to indulge his appetite. 毋貪口腹而恣殺牲禽。
( If you kill a chicken, you will not get any more eggs nor baby chickens. )
( In the modern world ........ if you take all your money out of the bank/stock market )
( you will not get any more interest/dividend income. )
( You will have a good time eating the chicken and spending all the money, )
( but you will be a poorer person after a few months. )

------------------------------------------

Please read ........

The Art of War 孙子兵法
by
Sun Tzu 孙子

FREE ( NO MONEY ) at ........
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Art_of_War
and
MILLIONS of internet searches for ........
The Art of War by Sun Tzu

Please use your IMAGINATIONS and BRAINS
to apply his STRATEGY FOR WARFARE
to ........
your STRATEGY FOR BUSINESS
and
your STRATAEGY FOR LIFE , LIVING & RELATIONSHIPS.

For example ........
Investigate and obtain information about the "enemy's army"
becomes ........
investigate and obtain information about your "business competitor" , "business partner" , "business suppliers" and "business
customers" ( Market research ! Ha ! Ha ! )
or ........
investigate and obtain information about your "girlfriend" , "girlfriend's family" , "girlfriend's job" , girlfriend's education" , etc
or ........
investigate and obtain information about your "boyfriend" , "boyfriend's family" , "boyfriend's job" , "boyfriend's education" , etc

- - - - - - - -

You might find out that ........

Your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) CLAIMS to have a "University degree" ... but ... does NOT !

Your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) wears EXPENSIVE CLOTHES
... but ... OWES THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS to her credit card company
..... means ..... your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) is IRRESPONSIBLE WITH MONEY !

Your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) has a "police record" for "driving when drunk"
..... probably means ..... she has a "ALCOHOL PROBLEM"
... and maybe ... a "DRUG PROBLEM".

Your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) CLAIMS that ........ she ( or he ) does NOT have any children
..... but .... she ( or he ) has "VERY BADLY BEHAVED" children ( who are IMPOSSIBLE to "live with" )
..... or ..... your boyfriend is paying THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS of "child support"

Your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) CLAIMS that
........ she ( or he ) does NOT have any "DISEASES" ( Sexually transmitted diseases )
........ but ........ your girlfriend ( or boyfriend ) is ALWAYS dating
....... and having "free sex" with 10 or more men ( or women ) in the last 20 years.
Many Chinese "QUALITY WOMEN" think that ........
........ a man is a "player" ( playboy ) ... if the man has more than 4 relationships !
If a man has had sex with 20 different women ........
can the man CONTROL HIMSELF
and ....... only have sex with ONE woman ....for the NEXT 30 YEARS ?
Comments to Thread
(Showing 1 to 11 of 11) 1
Comments
To respond to another member's comment type @ followed by their name before your comment, like this: @username Then leave a space.
Recent
Submit Thread