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Chinese vocabulary notes (November 2022)

In this month’s edition: returning to China (回国), emigrating from China, German chancellor visits China, energy crisis, compliments, growing up in China, Chinese economy and finally China’s one child policy.

You don’t have to go to China to learn Chinese!

The bad news: China won’t stop its zero-Covid policy anytime soon (or will it?). The good news: you don’t have to go to China to learn Chinese.

Chinese vocabulary notes #12

Chinese vocabulary notes (October 2022)

In this month’s edition: Chinese health expert explains China zero-covid policy, Xi’ great power diplomacy, China’s demographic trap and the Chinese immigrant experience in Germany.

Why do so few non-native learners manage to truly master Chinese tones?

From all the people learning Chinese and reaching a relatively high level of proficiency only a few ever seem to truly master the Chinese tones. By that I mean they speak fully fluent and sound so “native” that it would fool native Chinese speakers. Why is that? Are Chinese tones just too damn hard or is it laziness on our part?

Chinese vocabulary notes (September 2022)

In this month’s edition: Chinese public opinion on Mao Zedong & Kim Jong-Un, successful Chinese immersion in Britain, sex education in China, parenting – yes or no, Chinese phonetics master class, lockdown in Chengdu and cycling in Changsha.

9 things to expect from a good Chinese teacher

Are you taking Chinese classes or planning of doing so? In that case, nothing is more important than finding the right teacher. Here are 9 things I look for when it comes to Chinese teachers.

Chinese vocabulary notes (August 2022)

In this month’s edition: Chinese idols, what Chinese think about the Taiwanese question, parenting made in China and last but not least, Afu got COVID and how it impacts the Chinese-speaking YouTube community…

Online Chinese courses vs face-to-face Chinese courses

Does online Chinese class truly beat a face-to-face Chinese course or is it the other way round? Which type of course does suit your personal situation and learning needs best? Here’s my personal look at the pros and cons of on- and offline Chinese courses.

Chinese vocabulary notes (July 2022)

In this month’s edition: bitcoin explained in Chinese, what do people in China have to say about the Johnny Depp – Amber Heard trial, the story of Will hart (fluent in Chinese after 1.5 years), apartment hunting in Taipei and more!

Online Chinese classes with GoEast Mandarin – my experience

Looking for online Chinese classes to get to the next level? I took a few online classes with GoEast Mandarin. In this review, I’ll cover how it works, what it costs and what’s the added value.

Preparing for HSK 6 with flashcards: 2500 words in 500 days?

How long does it take to learn all HSK 6 vocabulary by relying on a spaced repetition flashcard app like Daily Chinese? And can it work?

Chinese vocabulary notes June 2022

Chinese vocabulary notes (June 2022)

In this month’s edition: Chinese as a global language, Chinese drinking culture, cat slaves, financial advise, computerized chopsticks and last but not least: finally understanding the Chinese news.

Reading Chinese web novels with Readibu

Want to read more authentic content in Chinese? Chinese novels, short stories and children stories written for native readers? For more intermediate and advanced learners the app Readibu has plenty of good reads to offer.

Chinese vocabulary notes #8

Chinese vocabulary notes (May 2022)

This edition could be called “escape from Shanghai”. Bear with me for some more zero-covid refugee talk.

What type of Chinese learner are you?

What type of Chinese learner are you?

Not so long ago, Mandarin Companion surveyed over a thousand Chinese learners worldwide. They discovered six main types of Chinese learners. What kind of Chinese learner are you?

Chinese vocabulary notes #7

Chinese vocabulary notes (April 2022)

This edition is (almost) all about the lockdown in Shanghai.

Reading the Chinese news: less hard than you think!

How difficult is it to read the Chinese news? From which level can you start and which tools and apps are recommended? Which Chinese news media are interesting to read?

Chinese vocabulary notes March 2022

Chinese vocabulary notes (March 2022)

Gaming crackdown, war in Ukraine, badminton, Xi dada, freelance life in China and more. The good news: spring has finally arrived.

Chinese idioms or chengyu

Chinese idioms – why and where to start?

Chinese learners are often told 成语 (chéngyǔ), the four-character idioms, are essential to reach native-like fluency. What are these idioms exactly and how important are they?

Chinese vocabulary notes #5

Chinese vocabulary notes (February 2022)

In this edition: lying flat, the Chinese social credit system, the Olympic financials explained and Love Defense Wars (yes). Here are my February Chinese vocabulary notes.

Review: Language-Hacking-Mandarin-Benny-Lewis

Review: Language Hacking Mandarin – a conversation course for beginners

What is #LanguageHacking? Who is Benny Lewis? Is it possible to become fluent in Mandarin in only three months? This is my review of “Language Hacking Mandarin” by Benny Lewis.

Best Chinese dictionary app

Learning Mandarin: what’s the best Chinese dictionary app?

Chinese dictionary apps are much more than mere translation tools. Which Chinese dictionary app offers the best features for your money’s worth?

Chinese vocabulary notes #4

Chinese vocabulary notes (January 2022)

Omicron, lockdown in Xi’an, what Taiwanese think of China, German real estate for Chinese buyers and more. January is almost gone, Spring will soon be here!

My 2022 overview of resources for Mandarin Chinese (II)

My 2022 overview of resources for Mandarin Chinese (II)

Learning Mandarin and looking for a comprehensive overview of must-have learning resources? This is part two.

My 2022 overview of resources for Mandarin Chinese (I)

Learning Mandarin and looking for a comprehensive overview of must-have resources? This is part one.

Chinese vocabulary notes

Chinese vocabulary notes (December 2021)

The end of year is drawing near. I hope you had a good and productive one so far and managed to stay positive, despite of the state our world is currently in. Here are some more Chinese vocabulary notes, a double dose of omicron or 奥密克戎 included.

HSK 5 Standard Course review

HSK Standard Course books review

The HSK Standard Course books are probably the most-used books to prepare for the HSK. How useful are these books to pass the exams and are they suitable for self-study? In this article, I review the books I’ve been using for the longest time: the HSK 5 Standard Course textbooks.

Learn Mandarin with Defense Language Institute online resources

The American Army takes foreign language acquisition seriously. The Defense Language Institute (DLI) is probably one of the finest foreign language schools in the world. I checked out their online database for Chinese.

Chinese vocabulary notes november 2021

Chinese vocabulary notes (November 2021)

Chinese hackers, programming languages, business class high-speed rail traveling, foodstreaming, Chinese facial recognition toilet paper dispensers, little pink: November has been an interesting month!

app review: DuShu vs Easy Chinese news

Reading Chinese: DuShu vs Easy Chinese News

You want to read and understand Chinese texts faster? In this post, I compare DuShu and Easy Chinese News and tell you from which one your reading skills benefit the most.

Chinese vocabulary notes #1

Chinese vocabulary notes (October 2021)

October has gone, but my Chinese vocabulary notes stay!

5 apps that help Chinese learners prepare for the HSK exam

5 apps to help you prepare for the HSK exam

The HSK test is a must for most Chinese learners. If you’re considering taking the HSK, you might be wondering which resources to use. These are 5 apps that help you prepare for the Chinese Proficiency Test.