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Chinese is undoubtedly one of the more challenging languages to learn, however with its growing importance in the global economy learning the language has become a valuable and rewarding undertaking. Here are a few interesting facts you might not know about the Chinese language and its origins.
- Chinese is the oldest written language in the world with over 6000 years of history.
- Chinese is the most widely spoken language in the world with over 1 billion native speakers and 15 million secondary speakers.
- Chinese is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.
- Chinese is spoken in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia, the United States of America, Canada and Indonesia.
- The Chinese language holds official language status in China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Singapore and Wa State in Burma.
- While one usually only needs to know 3000-4000 Chinese characters in order to read effectively, the language itself has over 20 000 Chinese characters in existence.
- In recent years, a Romanised form of Chinese has been developed in order to help westerners learn the language as well as to type Chinese into computers. This Chinese alphabet is known as Pinyin and is based on the Roman alphabet; Pinyin is used in most Chinese lessons to help students pick up the basics of the language.
- Chinese is a tonal language and uses 4 basic tones which can alter the meanings of the word drastically.
- There are more than 10 dialects of the Chinese language, most of which are mutually unintelligible.
With its unique history and many interesting facets, learning the Chinese language will prove to be a valuable and enlightening experience. For more information on the language and the courses we offer please visit our Why Learn Chinese page.
This course is a continuation of our 24 weeks' Chinese/Mandarin course in basic level, first the teacher will give the students a brief introduction to the Chinese language. After that the students receive an introduction to the chinese phonetics system. After the students mastered 40 Chinese words, the basic Chinese character structure will be explained.
For every chapter, the teacher will esplain the nessecary vocabulary, which will be dedicated to real situaion exercieses. For explanations regarding syntax and grammar, the teachers will use a functional approach to show students a clear structure and typical example sentences. The course focuses on the daily communications and important grammar and syntax explanation.
Furthermore, Chinese culture and etiquette will be included in class. Pinyin and simplified Chinese characters will be used as well. A large number of practical exercises will be involved in class, which includes: reading, making sentences, conversation, role play, and listening and retelling exercises. Everything will deepen each new conceptions that the students have already learnt.
- Class times: 09:15-10:45 / 11:00-12:30, from Monday to Friday
- Lessons: 4 lessons per day, 45 minutes per lesson
- Total training hours: 240 lessons (20 lessons per week, for 24 weeks)
- Text book: Kang, Y., Lai, S. (2005) Conversational Chinese I,II 汉语会话301句（上册，下册
The Chinese language aims to help students understand basic Chinese sentences that appear in everyday situations. For example, the students will learn to make and accept invitations, express likes and dislikes and talk about one's hobbies.
A letter grade can be offered in this course. The letter grade is based on the following scale:
C: 59% and below
The following overview gives you an idea on how the grading system works and how the grades are weighted:
Class participation: 30%
Oral presentation: 25%
- Lesson 1 to 5(Review (I)), which includes:
- Phonological rule.
- Questions with "吗" and interrogative pronouns.
- The sentences with an adjectival/verbal/ nominal predicate.
- "是" sentence(1)
- Prepositional construction
- Words of location
- 8 topics about daily life:to introduce yourself, to order dishes, to bargain in the market, to buy ticket, to take a taxi, to ask the way, to call somebody, to change the money.
Listening: Students can understand easy class phrases (e.g. Please look at the blackboard; Please listen to my pronunciation; please open your book and turn to Page ____; what does this word mean? Please hand in your homework. Please read after me,please read the new words. Please make a sentence. etc.)
Speaking: Students can use easy everyday phrases to express themselves.
Reading: Including 120 new words in the text book,about 100 new words in the topics; about 30 Chinese conversational sentences in the textbook(e.g. Where is the post office? I want to introduce myself.etc.);about Pinyin syllables are composed of three parts: initials、finals and tone marks. There are 21 initials, 28 finals and 4 tone marks.
Writing: Students may write easy simplified Chinese characters. Start to pay attention to the strokes of Chinese characters.
- Listen 6 to 12 (Review(II)), which includes:
- Ways to show the year, the month, the day, and the days of the week
- Way to tell time and grammatical functions of time words
- The question tag"... ，好吗
- "有" sentence
- The sentence with verbal construction in series
- Adverbial adjuncts
- Words of location
- The positive-negative question
- The modal particle "了"(1)
- Reduplication of verbs
- The sentence with a subject-predicate construction as its predicate
- Modal verbs
Listening: Students can understand almost all class phrases and some simple daily conversations.
Speaking: Students can use everyday phrases to express themselves, talk about the family numbers, the time, the things they are going to buy. etc., they can express themselves well when they want to ask the birthday of somebody, or to ask the time, the way, the place where the friends live, how to give somebody a suggestion ,etc.
Reading: Including about 140 new words; about 50 Chinese conversation sentences. Some useful topics are involved in class as: When is your birthday? What time is it? Where do you live? Shall we go to __? I want to buy. etc.
Writing: Students can write some simplified Chinese characters, almost no difficulty in recognizing characters what they've learned.
- The sentence with a distransitive verb as its predicate
- The modal verb "会" and the The modal particle "了"(2)
- Numeral-measure compounds acting as attributives
- The pivotal sentence
- "是" sentence (2)
- The preposition "给"
- The aspect particle "过"
- The sentence without a subject
- The expression "还没（有）…呢"
- The alternative question
- The sentence with verval constructions in series showing the manner of an action
- The directional complement(1)
- The expression "要…了" and "是…的"
- The objects of "从" and "在" with "这儿" and "那儿"
- A verb, verb phrase or subject-predicate phrase as an attributive
- The complement of degree, object, result and frequency
Listening: Generally speaking, Students can understand exactly when the teacher explains new words and sentences in Chinese.
Speaking: Students can express their wish with a lot of useful sentences:I want to, I need to___, I can___, I have to___, I must___.etc. They can express their feeling about something they experienced with some basic syntax. They can make an appointment to their friends and welcome somebody politely, They can choose kinds of ways to make a question.
Reading: Including about 180 new words; about 120 Chinese conversation sentences. They will learn a lot of special grammar-complement, how to show the time when the verb has not changed, how to emphasize something in the sentence. They will grasp the main method to learn Chinese-to understand the new words and sentences by context.
Writing: Students can use the simple sentences to write a letter or a diary, they can introduce their life in Beijing.
- Listen 21 to 27 (Review(V)), which includes:
- The continuous action
- The aspect particle "了"
- A complement of result "好" "开""下"
- The directional complement(1),(2)
- The adverb "就" and "才"
- The directional complement(2)
- The pivotal sentence with the verb "让"
- The positive-negative question.
- 2 special expression:"又…又…"，"要是…就…"
- The potential complement(1)
- "有点儿"as an adverbial adjunct
- The sentence expressing existence, appearance or disappearance
Listening: Students can understand most of the sentences when the teacher explain everything with normal speed Mandarin.
Speaking: Students can talk about the weather, hobby, the places they have been to etc., they can express themselves well for invitation, declination, apology, congratulation, persuasion, regret and praise, etc. They can correct themselves when there are mistakes of grammar when the teacher give them a hint.
Reading: Including about 180 new words; about 60 Chinese conversation sentences. The students can read a 200-word essay on daily life
Writing: They can send messages to their Chinese friends with cell phone in Chinese correctly, just like a native speaker, sometimes.
- Listen 28 to 34 (Review(VI)), which includes:
- The use of "比" and "有""没有" for comparison
- The complement of quantity
- "多"indicating an approximate number
- The complement of duration（1），（2）
- The interrogative sentence with "吧"
- The expression "除了…以外"
- The directional complement(3)
- The rhetoric question with "不是…吗？"
- A complement of result "见"
- Reduplication of adjectives and the structural particle "地"
- The potential complement(2)
- The "把" sentence (1)
- The expression "一…就…"
Listening: They can talk with Chinese freely if they have enough confidence.
Speaking: Students can deal with any problem about daily life in Chinese if they want to. They can show their temper with different tones. They can book the hotel, see the doctor, to express comparison.
Reading: Including about 160 new words; about 60 Chinese conversation sentences. Students can read some Chinese stories by themselves with dictionary.
Writing: Students can use about 20 sentences to write an interesting story, or to discuss the difference of culture among countries.
- Listen 35 to 40 (Review(VII) and Review(VIII)), which includes:
- Passive sentences
- The complement of duration (3)
- The expression "有的…有的…"
- The complex sentence with "虽然…但是…"，"不但…而且…"
- The verb "动" as a potential complement
- The "把" sentence (2), (3)
- The continuation and progression of an action
- The use of "不如" for comparison
- The expression "…了…就…"
Listening: They can understand the main meaning when they are watching some simple TV program and film, listening to the Chinese music.
Speaking: They can talk with Chinese with their familiar words. They can also express themselves very clearly even if there are some new words they do not know because they can explain the unknown words in Chinese.
Reading: Including about 140 new words; about 50 Chinese conversation sentences. Students can read some Chinese stories by themselves without dictionary.
Writing: The students can write a 300 to 400 words' essay on daily life with beautiful Chinese.