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Chinese-learning app roundup All Reviews
There are lots of apps for your phone and tablet that can help you to learn (or just improve) your Chinese. Which ones should you use?
Hard sounds Beginner Pronunciation Video
Some sounds in Chinese are hard for non-native speakers to say. Here are some of them, along with hints for saying them correctly:
Useful expressions All Expressions
Want to sound more native? Including traditional Chinese idioms into your speech can help. Here are some especially useful ones, many with parallels in Western speech:
Confusing grammar Intermediate Grammar
A number of grammar patterns seems similar when you first start to speak Chinese, but are actually used differently. Here are some commonly confused patterns, and when they should be used:
Into the haze! Intermediate Learning
A new game, “Into the haze,” has you trying to find your brother after a disaster occurs in your city. The catch? You need to use Chinese to communicate. Play this game, and you’ll not just be having fun, but also improving your Chinese:
Starter questions Beginner Vocabulary
Want to strike up a conversation in Chinese, but aren’t sure quite what to say? Here are some questions you can ask — although I must say, some of them seem a bit personal, at least to me:
Awkward! Intermediate Grammar Video
Have you ever found that when speaking Chinese, the locals give you a funny look, understanding what you meant but being mildly surprised that you would say things that way? In this lesson, you can learn how to soften your speech and make it more polite:
Reading app shootout All Reviews
If you want to improve your reading in Chinese, then there are three apps (Du Chinese, The Chairman’s Bao, and Decipher Chinese) that you might consider. What are the advantages and disadvantages of each? Note that the first two have sponsored Mandarin Weekly in the past:
Apps for traveling in China All Reviews Travel
If you’re planning to travel to (or in) China, then you might want to install a few apps before you leave. Here is a roundup of the best apps for travelers:
40 easy characters Beginner Characters
New to Chinese? Here are 40 easy characters (and words) that you can learn right away:
Bottoms up! All Vocabulary
Planning to go out for a drink with friends? Or with colleagues? Here is a guide to what, and how, you can drink in China — with a particular emphasis on the “how,” given the unwritten rules of etiquette that you should observe:
On the phone Beginner Vocabulary
Speaking on the phone is something we do all of the time — but the first time you do it in Chinese, it can be a bit daunting. Here are hints for how to speak on the phone, including vocabulary, etiquette, and how to ensure that you understand what they’re saying:
Little Apple All Culture Video
The song 小苹果 (xiǎo píng guǒ), or “Little Apple,” was a major hit in China a year or so ago. It’s still extremely catchy, with a funny (andn weird) video. Here is the music and video, if you haven’t enjoyed them yet — along with the lyrics, in characters and pinyin:
Ouch Beginner Vocabulary Video
Not feeling well? Here are some useful vocabulary words to describe your aches and pains:
All by myself Intermediate Grammar
When you say 自己 (zì jǐ) in Chinese, are you referring to “myself,” “yourself,” or “themselves”? It all depends, as described here:
Chinese money Beginner Vocabulary
What do Chinese banknotes look like, and how do you call them in Chinese?
In the family Beginner Vocabulary
How do you refer to relatives in Chinese? This chart (and audio) will help:
Others Beginner Grammar Video
How can you say “a different” something — different person, different restaurant, different dress, or a different place?
The eyes have it Intermediate Story
How can your eyes be open, but you’re still unable to see? This short story introduces a saying about keeping your eyes open to the truth:
Learning from mistakes Intermediate Story
Even Confucius makes mistakes, but he learns from them:
I’m so impressed Intermediate Grammar
How would you say that you’re so impressed by someone’s Chinese?
无奈 (wú nài) and 有奈 (yǒu nài)? Advanced Vocabulary
What do these mean, and how are they used in modern Chinese? (From the answers, I would seem that 有奈 isn’t actually a word at all.)
Meaning of 气 (qì) Advanced Vocabulary
What does the character 气 mean in the word 贵族气？