Just do these three things. That’s what I say when people ask me how to learn Chinese. There is a vast sea of resources out there, and after doing a lot of stumbling around, I’ve come to the conclusion that nothing compares to the elegant simplicity of a few simple, effective tools.
ChinesePod has lots of tools and resources, especially when you sign up for a Premium subscription. There are different personalized approaches one could take, and here a couple I’ve successfully done: The simple approach I now take, as well as the more comprehensive approach I used to take when I was at the Newbie/Elementary level.
Want the most comprehensive and entertaining education in spoken Chinese out there? Go to ChinesePod. If you’re serious, you’ll sign up for a Premium account. Yes, before September 2008, all lessons were free, published under a Creative Commons license. And there are plenty of those lessons available here.
Discouragement is a real deal-breaker for perfectionists. We have to consciously set upper limits to keep from overwhelming ourselves out of doing anything. “Keeping it real” can sometimes be a nearly insurmountable goal in-and-of itself. Take, for example, my off-and-on relationship with ChinesePod since returning to America.
“Wow. Now I’m really tired.” That’s what’s in my head every time I finally reach a period while reading Chinese. Making sense of each individual sentence is exhausting. If I’m trying to read more than one sentence, this is a bit of a problem. It’s even worse if I’m trying to work my way through…
Characters. They’re a pain. You just gotta memorize em. Lots of em. Over and over. Cuz you forget em. Again and again. What’s a desperate, nearly brain-dead student of Chinese, being pummeled with over 200 new words a week, to do?
The short version: If you want to get good tea in America without asking your Chinese friends to load up their suitcases before leaving the Mainland, Adagio.com is for you. My favorite kind? 滇红茶. Adagio calls it Yunnan Noir. The long version: Keep reading.
Ever since returning to the U.S. from China, my wife and I have shared the increasingly dilapidated 1999 Toyota Camry I purchased from a wholesaler back in 2004. Now that we have two kids, and I soon start commuting to a neighboring city for work, the One-Car Policy was clearly in need of revision.
The Shanghai Science and Technology Museum is a neat place to spend part of a day. My favorite spot, however, was the exterior!
In the fall of 2006, my coworkers at the Shanghai International School of Health Sciences moved into our brand new campus on the outskirts of Shanghai. It’s now in the middle of a bustling community, but here are some early photos from when the paint wasn’t even dry.