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Stay casual!

Today we’re going to talk about verb duplication in Chinese 🙂 It gets used when you want to express doing something that’s casual, not difficult, or won’t take a lot of time at all. You can use it in many situations, like when you want to try on some clothing at a store: 可以试试吗? (kěyǐ…

Memory Centre: 拼音的秘密 (pīnyīn de mìmì) Pinyin secrets, part III

Hi! Let’s take a look at the third and final instalment of 拼音的秘密 (pīnyīn de mìmì) Pinyin secrets! This last secret is the most whimsical, and while it’s beneficial to know of its existence, it’s unfortunately the most difficult to pin down, because there is no set rule for it. Welcome to the frustrating magic…

Memory Centre: 拼音的秘密 (pīnyīn de mìmì) Pinyin secrets, part II

Welcome to part II of 拼音的秘密 (pīnyīn de mìmì) Pinyin secrets! Let’s get right into it, shall we? -ui is actually -uei An easy one to start with! You can hear in shuǐ (水) that there’s actually an “e” hidden in there! The -an sound is different to the “an” bit in -ang I know,…

Memory Centre: 拼音的秘密 (pīnyīn de mìmì) Pinyin secrets, part I

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “why is it that the 拼音 (pīnyīn) for this word doesn’t look like what I’m hearing?” That’s because 拼音 (pīnyīn) has secrets! We’ll look at a few today, so don’t fret 🙂 z, c, s, zh, ch, sh, and r all use a different -i final than everything…

天气 (tiānqì) Weather

The weather last night and today has been pretty bad! Seems strange for Spring. When describing the weather like this in more detail, there are a few things we could say 🙂 刮风 (guāfēng) to be windy 刮大风 (guādàfēng) to be extremely windy/to have gale-force winds 下雨 (xiàyǔ) to rain 下雨 下大雨 (xiàdàyǔ) to rain…

你做什么工作? (nǐ zuò shénme gōngzuò?) What job do you do?

Let’s pick back up being able to introduce yourself. One of the things people like to talk about is what kind of job they do. So the next time somebody asks you, 你做什么工作? (nǐ zuò shénme gōngzuò?) What job do you do? you can answer with something like: 我是。。。 (wǒ shì …) I am [a]…

你是哪国人? (nǐ shì nǎ guó rén?) Where are you from?

Ahh, one of the basics. Where are you from? You’ll get asked it a lot in China, if you’re a foreigner, because people will be ever so curious about your non-black coloured hair, and non-brown coloured eyes 😛 So what are some of the options? 🇨🇳 中国 (Zhōngguó) China [Ed: of course we have to…

饮料 (yǐnliào) Drinks

It’s been a very long week, but it’s nearly the weekend! I know I deserve a drink. Hmm, what’s that? What are the names of different drinks in China? Well, I’m glad you asked! 水 (shuǐ) water 茶 (chá) tea 咖啡 (kāfēi) coffee 可乐 (kělè) cola That’s nice and all, but my personal favourite is:…

颜色 (yánsè) Colours!

Did you know that before modern Chinese, there was no distinct word for the colour blue? And further to that, scientific study shows that when a language doesn’t have that distinction, it means people tend not to even see that colour, simply seeing “another version of green”? … Time to learn our colours! 红色 (hóngsè)…

写汉字 (xiě hànzì) Write Chinese

A Chinese character with a lot of different strokes, 永 (yǒng) meaning forever, always
Writing Chinese seems like a big mystery and something you cannot learn, but that’s not true! Yes, there are plenty of rules when it comes to writing Chinese, the fundamental one being stroke order, but once you understand the why, it becomes much easier 🙂 In Chinese, one or more strokes make up a character,…