Study & Learn
Chinese looks like one of the most complex languages to have been put into existence – but it really doesn't have to be. As a non-native, reaching complete fluency will take time, patience, passion and effort, so just have fun with it and see how far you can get! Categorised into the 4 different learning styles, My Bamboo Bridge provides ideas, extra resources and explanation on how to learn Chinese in a fun way – most useful for those with a foundation of Chinese Mandarin.
Getting started ...
Make a realistic study plan, integrating listening, speaking, reading and writing
Think about your motivation for learning Chinese Mandarin and keep this in sight
Be patient with language learning; no one becomes fluent over night and it does take time
READ / WRITE
Quizlet is a great site for collating your own vocab flashcard folders
Chinese Reading Practice has beginner, intermediate and advanced material - from recipes, to poems and essays.
Attune your ear to Chinese by listening to the radio and making notes of new vocab - try China Whisper
Search Facebook groups with foreign language learners looking for speaking partners
Try italki for online language partners
In terms of formalising your Chinese Mandarin language abilities, HSK is the official language examination of Chinese Mandarin competencies. HSK stands for 汉语水平考试 Han yu Shui ping Kao shi literally meaning “Chinese Level Test”. Consisting of writing, reading and listening, there are 6 levels (The HSKK covers speaking only, of which there are 3 levels) all outlined below. The links provided offer mock exams, vocab lists and a breakdown of the exam itself.
You'll be able to use very simple Chinese phrases, meet basic needs for communication and possess the ability to further your Chinese language studies.
You'll have an excellent grasp of basic Chinese and will be able to communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine day-to-day matters.
You'll be able to communicate in Chinese at a basic level on daily, academic and professional matters. When travelling in China, communication should be easy.
You'll be able to converse in Chinese on a large range of topics and will be able to communicate fluently with native Chinese speakers
You'll be able to read Chinese newspapers and magazines, enjoy Chinese films and plays, and give a full-length speech in Chinese
You'll be able to easily comprehend written and spoken information in Chinese and effectively express yourself in Chinese, both orally and on paper
You are a China baby. Once you have the basics down, everything will start to get a lot easier
Make the mistakes a teenager would make (but with your language) - seize opportunities to explore, meet and create
You are a China adult
You've done it - you're a 中国通 a "China hand"