A Chinese Phrase A Day is a fun, less-intimidating way to learn Chinese! Part of Tuttle's best-selling page-a-day line, this new edition teaches useful everyday phrases and words.
Although more people are studying the Chinese language than ever before, others are still wary of starting because they believe, "it's too difficult." But A Chinese Phrase A Day will show absolute beginners that Chinese is in many ways much easier than other languages and it will help intermediate Chinese learners review and improve upon their past studies and practice Chinese everyday. With almost no grammar or tense, no verb conjugation and a consistency that English, Spanish, French and Japanese learners can only wish for, Chinese enables you to start conversing relatively quickly. After a few weeks of gradual progress your ability to read Chinese, write Chinese and speak Chinese will grow tremendously.
This calendar like desk companion is divided into monthly topics and builds upon itself, one day at a time. Chinese phrases are kept short, simple and functional.
Each of the 365 pages include these four components:
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I got the idea for this book while looking at language calendars in the bookstore. I found that most of the sentences used in the daily calendars were disconnected expressions and proverbs that were not very useful in actually learning Chinese, and did not build upon the readers vocabulary by using repetition. Since Chinese was not even available in the calendar format, I wrote this book with my co-author to fill the gap.
Originally, Chinese Phrase-A-Day was written in the calendar format, but after discussion with my publisher, we agreed that the calendar format was not a very effective way of learning. With the calendar format, you need to start on January 1st, and you'd probably like to keep your date correct even if that meant skipping a few days of phrases; but without the calendar format, you can start any time of year, and you aren't pressured to flip past a phrase or two that you might not have had time for. There should be no rush to learn.
The hardest part writing this book was coming up with the notes at the bottom. We strived to make them relevant to both the serious language learner and those with an interest in Chinese culture as well.
Japanese Phrase-A-Day was released in 2010, and they both have an online audio component which we hope you'll use. There really is no substitute for hearing the pronunciation of a native speaker.
Sam Brier is the owner of Academic Experiences Abroad (www.AEA-Asia.com), which creates customized study abroad programs to Asian countries. He holds degrees in journalism and Asian Studies, and is active in a variety of efforts to increase cultural exchange between the U.S. and China.
Xia Lu is a translator. She has taught Chinese in Houston, Texas, with AFS, and is currently a high school English teacher in Hefei, China.
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