Last week an interview with me was posted on LearnMandarinNow. I wanted to write about it earlier but it didn’t fit into my blogging schedule (yes, I actually have one). LearnMandarinNow is a website giving you all kind of tips on how to learn Mandarin. There are many other interviews with people learning Mandarin and I must say that there are some tips which are also useful to me such as listening to vloggers (after learning Mandarin now for 5 years!). I might be not the perfect person to be interviewed regarding learning Mandarin because I am far from perfect but I do hang in there and study every single day for the past years.
Here a little snippet of the interview:
If slow progress sometimes frustrates me, how can I improve my Chinese quickly?
The best way is of course to be in China and to be confident enough to just start talking. The next best thing is to sit down every single day, go through the study books, learn the vocabulary/ characters and try to just watch Chinese TV shows. Sure, it is much work but when you study every day you will quickly see results. Very good can be also tandem language learning however I never tried this one out.
Check out the rest of the interview here. Be sure also to read through some of the other interviews and materials if you are interested in learning Mandarin because there might be few things you haven’t tried yet.
28 thoughts on “Top 10 tips how to learn Chinese on your own (Interview on LearnMandarinNow)”
Uuuh, we had interviews at the same time, haha. Nice interview! How fluent are you in Mandarin?
I wish I would be fluent. I surely can talk however me with my monotone voice have troubles getting the higher tones right. This is the reason my wife tried thati learn XI’an hua as it has a lot of low tones 😀
Good luck learning Chinese, Crazy. Spot on in that interview. Everyone learns differently, so some methods of learning a language will be different for others. For me, I never learnt much of the language apart from two years of Grade 1 and 2 Chinese classes. Very basic words.
Yes, everyone has their own style to study. I need constant repitition to learn something like vocabulary. Thats why I made those vocabulary / character flash cards. At the moment I have 650-700 cards 🙂
That’s why I watch Japanese anime and Norwegian TV show, to learn more languages! 😀
Hehe, I need to start watching more Chinese tv shows again, since MIL is here I am never in the living room as she is there all the time 😀
I watched anime for soo many years but I wasnt really interested in Japanese and hence I didnt really learn anything
Wow, you learnt it on your own? That’s a lot of work put in. I’ve tried to learn korean on my own and I still find it hard but I studied Mandarin for about 3 years during my university days and I’m just happy enough that I can get by with simple mandarin now cos I have forgotten a lot of things that I learnt. I do try to eavesdrop whenever someone is speaking Mandarin around me though to test my listening skills though, that was fun… hahaha!
I had in the beginning a language class at university however it was only once a week and with this if you dont study at home you forget everything till the next class. After this terrible study experience I started to study on my own. Ive got few different textbooks here and I started to do those flash cards about 2 years ago or so. Now ive got around 650-700 cards from which I know about 95%. I hope till next year to get to 1000 cards but lets see, for now I need to practice my speaking skills again as I have avoided it since MIL was here last time
I learned languages that use different letters than English just to see if I can learn them. Chinese would certainly be on my list for future learning. Thanks for sharing.
Learning languages with different letters than your native language/ what you are used to is always a challenge. I remember when I studied Russian that it was a bit weird at first but I got into it rather quickly. THe trouble with Chinese is that there is no alphabet but each character standing for a own word => you need thousands of them as a native speaker. I think it is around 1000 characters you need to know in order to understand like 93% of a newspaper
I took an online beginners course in Mandarin. it was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed it, but I was too busy to continue studying. In Sweden they have these online courses at university level, but at different paces, which any EU citizen with a high school diploma can sign up for. For some countries’ citizens (I think Finland is included) it’s for free.
I actually didnt know about this. I will try to find out more about those courses 🙂
This is the website: http://www.studera.nu I think most of the online courses offer either 50% pace or 25% pace with online lectures only 1-2 times each week, which is great, if you have a job + you’ll earn ECTS credits:)
Sounds great, now I just need time 😛
Good interview and nice-looking site. Since I’ve been learning Thai, I recognize good advice when I see it. Congrats on the interview 🙂
I am no big online learner so I can never tell on first glance which sites are good 🙂
I liked your interview but it was weird not seeing pics of you and your fam to match. I’m wondering why the site went the stock photo (or random?) route.
I actually had no good pictures to match with this interview so I let them run free with the stock photos 🙂
Got it! Makes sense. I was thinking that might have been the case, based on what you’ve said about you and photos. 😀
Mandarin seems so difficult, hats off to you for learning it!
For me it is much easier than Finnish! Finnish is considered as one of the most difficult languages in the world, the grammar is just a nightmare
Congrats on the interview and good tips! Now if only I could force myself to study every single day…doubtful!
I also have to force myself on a few days 🙂
I still believe, the best way to learn is to live sometime in the country. I see it from our kids: 1 month living with grandma in Taiwan and her Chinese improves faster than 1 year here in Germany, even daddy speaking with her from time to time.
Indeed, living in the country is the best way. Our Nathan won’t learn real speaking skills now inour short stay in China but he will be again connected to the language.