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faqFAQ

What's the difference between Mandarin & Chinese?

Technically, Chinese refers to the family of languages spoken in China. I use the word 'Chinese' interchangeably with 'Mandarin' of which there are estimated to be 850 million Mandarin speakers(!!).

Learn to Speak Mandarin

10 More Ways to Help you Learn Mandarin

Here are some tips to improve your Mandarin skills!

10 Ways to Learn Mandarin

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How to Learn Mandarin

4 Rules to Learning Mandarin Successfully

 

There is no secret formula of course in mastering a new language. However, based on my experience, the following 4 factors are key to learning Chinese successfully.

 

Rule #1: Small and Frequent Dosage

 

Trying to learn everything about Chinese into a crammed 3 hour class is not an effective way to learn Chinese (or any other language for that matter!). That's why if you've tried the classroom method, it usually isn't very effective (and not very cheap either) and is not a great use of your time. You'll forget most of what you've learned and you tend to lose focus very quickly. Rather, the best method is to learn in small portions and practice frequently, typically spending between 10 to 20 minutes.

 

If you can set aside that time daily, around the same time of the day either after lunch time or after work or something, it'll make your time and learning far more effective.


Rule #2: Speak Mandarin!

 

It is important to have the opportunity to hear yourself speak! Find a quiet and comfortable place where you can do this and speak out loud. This process will help you build your speaking skills as well as your listening skills. Use the phrases in your learn mandarin videos and repeat them out loud!

 

You will build confidence and feel more and more comfortable about saying the words in Chinese.

 

Rule #3: Look for Chinese People

 

Most of you reading this will likely live in a city that is home to a lot of Chinese people. That means you will a good opportunity to find Chinese people with whom you can chat with. Maybe you have a friend, colleage, classmate, relative, etc. that speaks Chinese? Even better!

Speak to them and try to converse as much as possible. This will really help you accelerate your Chinese learning!

 

If you don't know anyone that speaks Chinese then you can join Chinese clubs, societies or simply visit Chinatown!

 

Rule #4: Revise Regularly

 

It is not a good idea to move through a course very quickly. You will find later lessons difficult to get through and get discouraged. It is best to find a good balance between how fast you move forward in your lessons and revising you have already learned.

 

The LearnMandarin Video Course has been designed so that you have time to review and digest the new words and phrases that you have learned as well as move forward at a good pace.

 

Now, remember that learning and using Chinese is fun! When you use what you have learnt in this course in real situations, that's the rewarding part. That's why I say you need to find Chinese people to interact with as soon as possible to reinforce the joy of learning Chinese. And yes, you will make mistakes. But you can still get your basic meaning across. And yes, you will forget some words or phrases. But that's natural -- you're not going to remember everything immediately!

 

Keep at it and you'll be on your way to fluency!