how is the best way to remember chinese characters?
March 6, 2008 8:46am CST
actually I join a chinese language class after work, twice a week and the learning atmosphere there is actually very fun and exciting. I just love spending my times learning with them, and the teacher, she is cool. :) but due to my busy work sometimes, I just got home late and missed some classes, so it's a bit difficult for me to keep following the lesson, especially when it comes to more and more characters and there are a lot of chinese characters that are similar. and I have often mistaken one character to another. I love this language but when it comes to test / exam, the frustration of studying comes again, there are so many words / characters to memorize, and how is the best way to remember the correct characters? please help by giving your advices, especially those of you who are chinese native speakers. thank you so much for dropping your suggestions. ^___^
28 Mar 08
I did too. hehehe. but I believe I will need to use the characters often so they will sink better again even after I don't write them too often anymore. but yes, that's the main thing I would have to do when a dictation test comes up. thanks for sharing!
22 Mar 08
Hello dear bongkarpasang. To begin with, I am native speaker of Chinese. Let me tell you the way we learn Chinese as a kid. First of all, you know, the first step is to listen to the language you are learning before you can speak. That is why we say listening first before you try to speak, which is the groundwork of learning a foreign language. Then you will start to learn how speak and write the words. Chinese characters have many different strokes and those word have four or five different tones. While speaking it, you need to pronounce it correctly. I have found that it is not easy for a foreigner to pronounce properly with those tones. As a result, they always use the same tone. While practising how to write those Chinese characters, you need to practise the strokes, the right way to write them. Also you need to do a lot of reading to help you recognize those characters.The more you read, the more you can recongnize them. The more you practise the four basic learning skills like listening, speaking, reading and writing, the better you will this language. By the way, to have a Chinese friend with you, whom you can often chat with, is the best way to improve your Chinese in all ways. Good luck and happy learning Chinese.
24 Mar 08
hi williamjisir. glad to read your response here. ^^ thank you so much for the tips and advices. I see, so for the better grip of reading and recognizing, I had better done the listening first. yeah, now I remember that even babies started learning words from what they heard, from the older people who spoke to them. yes, I also notice it now, when I have known how to speak the word, usually the character would sink better in my memory, even the strokes of the character. I actually tried to have some reading books for Chinese language, but perhaps because I got no prior impression towards the words, then the vocabularies were easily forgotten. your latest tips about having Chinese friends to chat is also great way to improve it. I never thought of using Chinese language to chat before, usually I did in English language. now I got it. thanks for your complete tips and advice! I hope I will also have good and happy times in learning this language. have a good day. xie xie! ^_^
24 Mar 08
Bukeqi, my dear friend. I just talk about this from the way we learn our native language. It is also suitable for us when we are learning a foreign language. I thank you very much for the best response and hope that you will enjoy yourself learning Chinese. Here I would like to offer you some information about learning more of Chinese. You know, in China, the most popular chatting software is QQ. If you download QQ chatting software, you will get many more chances to chat with Chinese people online. It is a very good way to learn Chinese via QQ chatting, either by typing in Chinese or by talking in Chinese. Please have a try. I wish you happy learning Chinese. Take care and thank you very much for the best response. I really appreciate it very much. Have a good day.
• United States
6 Mar 08
I know what you mean. I currently teach English in China and the school lets me attend Chinese classes with the foreign students when I am not teaching. I would miss one out of three lessons and I could never catch up. I decided that it would be better to get a private tutor than to try to keep up with a class. The foreign students were able to put their full attention on it, but they still had difficulties. It might be better to get a self-study book and just learn on your own. My nephew says that they put to much attention on stroke order and if you get the final product, it shouldn't matter which stroke you do first. Good luck with this.
• Guangzhou, China
24 Mar 08
I have to say that Chinese is a difficult language. To all languages that we don't know, we all think they are so hard to remember. I think it's better to start to learn the most simple words at first. And try to get use to them until you really learn it. Then you can study another step. You need to build a good base and therefore you will master a language.
24 Mar 08
hi youless, I see. yes, many people say Chinese is the most difficult language to learn. I think the most difficult part is actually inside the characters themselves, because Chinese uses hanzi and not alphabets, so most alphabets language people would find difficulties in learning Chinese or other non-alphabet languages (Arabian / Farsi, Korean, Thai, etc.) also some characters have same tone and pin yin, but different characters completely, so I might remember another one with the same pin yin and tone, but completely forgot how exactly this character I did mean. I also try to stick to simple words, but sometimes the topics I learned in the class were difficult in word characteristic and also in writing. I don't really have difficulties in grammar so far, but maybe because the grammar I've been studying are still the basic one. perhaps I need more writing and writing in order to have better grip towards the characters memorizing. thanks for adding more tips to improve my learning. ^^ I have taken notes from all of you who contributed the tips and advice here. hopefully I would make better progress. xie xie! ^_^
10 Mar 08
hi plumwish07 ^^ yes, I'm learning chinese language. I just love their characters and the calligraphy, I think they have awesome characters and exciting grammar usage. umm, how do I explain chinese character now ... the character I meant here is their each single word. I mean, we have a b c in alphabets and the a b c till z are our alphabet characters, but Chinese language has hundreds of thousands characters (for Chinese native speakers, please correct me if I'm wrong), and we Indonesian people just called the character as huruf Kanji / Hanzi (the chinese letter). if you know what I mean. ^^
7 Mar 08
that's okay. still, thank you for dropping your response here. :) I know that even english is difficult for some multilingual people, like Dad is good in learning Asian languages but he also has difficulty in learning english. I love Italian language too, but I just don't understand how to remember the masculine feminine vocabularies prefix suffix .... we are facing similar situation, but with different languages. :)
6 Mar 08
im not a native chinese speaking person, but im half blood chinese, and knew a little more chinese. my advice is to practice it every day accumutively, put your self in an environment where other know mandarin, who could connect to you as well teach you unconciously, use what have you learn every our, evn try talking to your self in mandarin, that would also help.
7 Mar 08
my problem is that the environment here who know mandarin speak other dialect and since I'm quite new in chinese language, I just get more confused with the difference of their tone / dialect. talking to myself in mandarin? wow, that's new for me, it must be a good idea. thanks for your response, I will try that too. :)