• Home
  • Search
    •  
  • Login
    • Username: Password:

      Did you miss your activation email?

Author Topic: Avenues for learning Chinese  (Read 20671 times)

George

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 6135
    • My view of China
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #45 on: November 17, 2008, 08:19:15 PM »
Yep. Been there, done that, but no Tee-shirt. I went to the same Camp as Non-Dave, Ruth and Crippler, more because I wanted a holiday than to learn Chinese. Apart from a minor problem, like the accommodation having no heat, and having to sleep fully dressed, under 6 quilts, to keep from freezing, I had a good time. Noles solved the freezing problem by finding a new venue. I actually did learn enough Chinese to give me the confidence to start using it. Our teachers were cute, and helpful, even if they did get embarrassed often by some of the more off-topic questions from ND and Crippler. Definitely recommend! agagagagag agagagagag
The higher they fly, the fewer!    http://neilson.aminus3.com/

Stil

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 4800
    • ChangshaNotes
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #46 on: November 18, 2008, 11:45:41 PM »
I went to the first one. It was excellent. I had a great time (aside from listening to Noles playing the guitar) and most importantly it helped me understand how i could teach myself. I didn't learn much in two weeks but I learned how to learn.

Give a man a fish - teach a man to fish stuff.

Just as important in my view is that I made some very good friends. The people that go there are usually quite serious about being in China.

I highly recommend it.  bfbfbfbfbf

Hide the guitars.

The Hiphoppopotomous

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 428
    • Shanghaiwings
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #47 on: September 29, 2010, 12:23:49 PM »
Tell you what guys, this whole learning process is killing me. I know it's harder to learn a language as you age, but I just cant seem to grasp it. My tutor is good, and her english is good enough for her to be efficient, but nothing sticks, and it has taken 5 sessions just to learn 25 basic words/ phrases.

I cant afford to actually enrol on a course or anything, and am happy with tutoring, but like it says in the first post, the temptation to just quit trying because it's so damned hard, is always there. I feel drained and dejected after every lesson, although I think it is because we do it in the evening after I've been teaching or doing other things all day, and am exhausted.

In your experiences, does time of day have an real impact on learning? or am I just making more excuses as to my lack of progress.

Day Dreamer

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 4430
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #48 on: September 29, 2010, 01:24:12 PM »
Tell you what guys, this whole learning process is killing me. I know it's harder to learn a language as you age, but I just cant seem to grasp it. My tutor is good, and her english is good enough for her to be efficient, but nothing sticks, and it has taken 5 sessions just to learn 25 basic words/ phrases.

I cant afford to actually enrol on a course or anything, and am happy with tutoring, but like it says in the first post, the temptation to just quit trying because it's so damned hard, is always there. I feel drained and dejected after every lesson, although I think it is because we do it in the evening after I've been teaching or doing other things all day, and am exhausted.

In your experiences, does time of day have an real impact on learning? or am I just making more excuses as to my lack of progress.


Can you say that in Chinese?  ahahahahah

I couldn't have said it any better, I'm too old, too tiredand too stupid to learn. I'm a great teacher but a lousy student
For you to insult me, first I must value your opinion

Stil

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 4800
    • ChangshaNotes
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #49 on: September 29, 2010, 03:29:46 PM »
Don't give up.

It's not a gradual process but comes in fits and starts. You'll plod along seemingly learning nothing then out of the blue something will click and you'll understand a fair bit and you'll reach another plateau.

You've been here a minute and a half.

Give yourself a chance.

And yeah, most people learn better in the mornings.

Nolefan

  • Lord of Avalon
  • Benevolent Despot
  • *****
  • Posts: 2408
  • 八九不离十
    • BeijingDaze
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #50 on: September 29, 2010, 04:03:02 PM »

what Stil said ( I'm sick to my stomach agreeing with him)

I've spent 5 years running a bootcamp to teach foreigners how to learn Chinese and I know it ain't easy.. but it ain't that hard either! If learning the language for the sake of learning the language is not enough of a motivation or it's proving too slow, you gotta start looking at alternative approaches.
If you're musically inclined, find songs you like and learn them.. song along for a while and then worry about translating them!
If you love cooking, learn the names of the vegetables and other relevant items first...
Basically find something that peaks you interest and follow it...

What this does is it enables you to build a base of vocabulary, no matter how specific it is, that you can then try and put i not structures and what not.. it gets easier  agagagagag
alors régressons fatalement, eternellement. Des débutants, avec la peur comme exutoire à l'ignorance et Alzheimer en prof d'histoire de nos enfances!
- Random food, music and geek tales from the 'Jing: http://beijingdaze.com

Borkya

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 1354
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #51 on: September 29, 2010, 10:58:56 PM »
I hear ya James! It is tough, especially in the beginning. I took Chinese classes at home during the weekend and I was pretty sure the teacher (a chinese guy who was going to school nearby) was going to tear his hair out the first few weeks. It took us (3 intelligent adults) over three weeks to learn the pinyin alphabet! We just could not get it.

Now being here I find Chinese tough too. I don't get a tutor, but I'm allowed to go to class with the other foreign students (my classmates are asians and there are 7 of us in total). I get REALLY frustrated most of the time because they are full time students with classes everyday and have to speak the language to communicate with anyone and I am part time (I go twice a week) and my job is speaking english. So they are much better than me and struggling through class also makes me tired, angry and the phrase "why even bother you stupid idiot," runs through my head constantly.

At some point you'll have a good day and on that day you will be dancing around on cloud 9 and you'll feel totally energized. Other days you'll suck, be frustrated and feel exhausted after class. I think it is normal.

So the only advice I can give is your not alone! But push through and keep going with the lessons as it will really help with living here.

dragonsaver

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 4452
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #52 on: September 29, 2010, 11:48:58 PM »
I am 66 and I am learning Chinese.

I forget a lot when I go home for the summer but it comes back.

I find I have to repeat, repeat repeat the word and or phrases for them to stick.  I then try to use them as much as possible.  The poor taxi drivers in my city are my practice partners.  Many actually enjoy a foreigner trying to speak to them.

It took a couple of years before the stuff started to stick. It is gradual but once you start retaining stuff it does start getting faster.  I use my learning Chinese as a 'weapon' in class with my students.  I say 'I am old and I am learning Chinese.  You are young so you CAN learn English.  It just takes WORK'!!!!! bfbfbfbfbf

I found reading out loud (not silently) the vocabulary words just before I went to bed helpful.  Your brain will process stuff while you sleep.

Hang in there and keep trying.   agagagagag agagagagag agagagagag
Be kind to dragons for thou are crunchy when roasted and taste good with brie.

MK

  • Barfly Dude
  • *
  • Posts: 1884
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #53 on: September 30, 2010, 12:10:24 AM »
I wouldn't usually advocate it....but since your poor, grab some of the Chinese-pod newbie lessons and slap 'em on the old MP3 for those long bus journeys into town:

http://www.torrentz.com/search?q=chinesepod

If you can, find lessons that overlap with what you are doing in class to some extent, and then shock your tutor by busting out some amazingly native hanyu!

The Hiphoppopotomous

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 428
    • Shanghaiwings
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #54 on: September 30, 2010, 04:46:35 AM »
Thanks guys I dont feel so bad now. I want to learn, because A, I think it is respectful to learn a language if i'm living in that country for an extended amount of time, B, because it's cool and I actually like the language (unlike french which I pretty much shunned in school) and c, because I get overcome with jealousy sitting at a tble of people and only understanding the odd word. I do now picku p on words and phrases, but very rarely and it's usually in the middle of some lightspeed sentence.

This morning I had the brtight idea of getting my students to write down the English, Pinyin, and Chinese of as many fruits,veg and meat that they could think of while I went for apiss, and then practised it on the poor guy in the restaurant (the words, not the piss)

Ah well, at least I cant blame age anymore :)

dragonsaver

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 4452
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #55 on: September 30, 2010, 05:38:46 AM »
Look at the street markets.  You can buy posters of fruits and vegetables with the picture, name in Pinyin and Chinese Character.  I have several posters on my kitchen wall.  I look at them every day.  It helps   bfbfbfbfbf agagagagag agagagagag
Be kind to dragons for thou are crunchy when roasted and taste good with brie.

Borkya

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 1354
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #56 on: September 30, 2010, 12:57:42 PM »
I have the little kid posters that are suppose to be for little kids to learn pinyin and the characters. You know, the ones with big blocky pictures of a mouth and the word Kou (with the tone) and then the character.

Laugh all you want but it has totally worked! We were ordering something in a restaurant and had no idea what a dish was. My hubby recognized the character from the poster (it was wood) and then we realized the other one must be 'ear' for wood ear mushrooms. We felt like powerful gods translating the menus from the silly little posters that adorn the walls of preschool.

dragonsaver

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 4452
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #57 on: September 30, 2010, 03:21:15 PM »
Yes, those are the ones I was talking about.   bfbfbfbfbf
Be kind to dragons for thou are crunchy when roasted and taste good with brie.

kitano

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 2506
    • Children of the Atom
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #58 on: September 30, 2010, 03:49:44 PM »
just to make you feel better james, i've been here for a year and a half and my chinese is atrocious. i can pick out some things just by hearing it every day but learning it is just horrible for me

i remember i had the same thing when i learned italian but if you keep plugging away one day it does click and then you love it

i just have the fear of going into it seriously cos i'm not talented at languages at all and i am avoiding that feeling of working hard for ages which you are going through...

El Macho

  • Barfly
  • *
  • Posts: 756
  • 东北人都是活雷锋
Re: Avenues for learning Chinese
« Reply #59 on: October 01, 2010, 08:48:45 AM »
Tell you what guys, this whole learning process is killing me. I know it's harder to learn a language as you age, but I just cant seem to grasp it. My tutor is good, and her english is good enough for her to be efficient, but nothing sticks, and it has taken 5 sessions just to learn 25 basic words/ phrases.
You've only had five lessons. That's not many at all. After several months you'll be better equipped to judge the progress you've made.

Be sure to study, study, study outside of your tutorials and try to stretch what you've learned you talk about new things.