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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Why Learn Chinese?

Why Learn Chinese?

1. China is emerging from a period of stagnation and again taking it's place as one of the great powers of the world.

2. Learning Chinese could give you an edge in doing business in China competing with people who don't speak Chinese. I like this quote from a Time Magazine Article: British linguist David Gaddol. If you want to get ahead, learn Mandarin. "In many Asian countries, in Europe and the USA, Mandarin has emerged as the new must-have language," Gaddol notes.

3. Mandarin Chinese is the most taught foreign language after English in Japan. If the Japanese are learning it, shouldn't people in the US?

4. Chinese is the fastest growing Foreign Language being taught in US schools. I like Mayor Daly's quote: "We want to give our young people opportunities to advance ... and [Chinese] is a great opportunity to survive in today's economy."

5. It's a great ice breaker when working with people from China if you can say a few words in Chinese. This helps especially when dealing with business people on the other side of the world via conference call.

6. Over 16,000 US companies sell products in China. Trade is not only from China to the US, but also the other way. $41.8 Billion in 2006.

7. China has become the factory of the world and is moving up the technology food chain. Look at the balance of trade between the US and China. Per Nobel Prize Winner Robert Mundell China will become the factory of the world, in my opinion it already has.

8. Learning Chinese has become easier. ChildBook.com offers products for Children to learn Chinese from DVD's to books with songs especially designed to help teach Chinese. A recent addition was a series of textbooks, workbooks, and CD's called Practical Chinese that is also called “The Effective Way of Learning Reading, Writing, and Speaking Chinese” as well as free fun stuff for Children for Learning Chinese such as coloring pictures and game instructions.

I would usually do 10 reasons, but 8 is a lucky number in Chinese!”

What some other sites have as reasons for Learning Chinese!

Why Learn Chinese from ChildBook. I will be updating it soon :-)
Why Learn Chinese by the Asia Society
Why Study Chinese from an Ohio State Page
Why Study Chinese from the Union College in NY
Why Study Chinese from a Colorado College Students

My thoughts on the other sites reasons from the ones I don't have in common.

1. Ordering better Chinese Food. Makes sense, it's frustrating to go into a restaurant and the entire menu is in Chinese and the person taking the order and you can't communicate. There is a breakfast place locally I like, that has that issue.

2. Olympics as a reason, following this line of reasoning every four years you should learn a new language?

3. Amount of people in China. OK reason.

4. 5000 years of Culture - Good reason.

5. Adding to your CV or resume - again makes sense.

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