Learning Chinese for Kids Blog
10% Off - Join our E-Mail List!
Subscribe so you get a weekly, fun to read Learning Chinese E-Mail newsletter including sales, tips, events, and new product announcements. Unsubscribe at any time safely! A 10% off one time coupon ($25 minimum purchase) will be sent to you with your E-Mail subscription.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Paying for Internships in China

The fee for summer internships is $2900 to $4900. The fees include housing and visa fees. About 20 to 40% are accepted.

Foreign Interns Head to China - NY Times

Absolute Internship and CRCC Asia are the two companies offering this service.

Labels: ,

In China, Second Thoughts About ‘Dishonest Americans’ Column

Good read, basically Chinese Social Media had a back lash against a column just launched in the online People’s Daily with the title: “The Dishonest Americans Series”, the better translation is “Immoral and Untrustworthy Americans.”).

Interesting on question to think about is why is this column being pushed by the authorities in China?


Friday, May 24, 2013

Reno's 1878 Chinatown Fire - Who did it?

From the article, looks very suspicious.

Did Reno Workingman’s Party burn Chinatown in 1878?  Ask the RGJ

My list of racism against Chinese in the US. I did not have this on my list.


Adoption Families Audited by IRS


If you took the adopting Children Credit, you had a 69% chance of being audited in 2011. But, only 1.5% of the adoption credit was disallowed.

A lot of my customers adopted children from China.

Who will tame the taxman? - The Economist


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Chinese IP Theft Hits US University

I have such mixed feelings on this.

Basically a Chinese researcher came to the US to work of NYU, got a $4 Million grant for research, and then a Chinese company paid him $400,000 for his research, as well a grad school. He is now in jail.

Chinese IP Theft Hits US University - The American Interest Via Media

Spying for China Is One Way to Pay for NYU Grad School - The Atlantic Wire

Labels: ,

Chinese vs. US College Experience at Boston University

A good article that has a lot of truth in it, but is very general since it's only Boston University Students

Key Points:
  • Chinese Colleges once you get in, your set
  • US Colleges are harder than US High Schools
  • Chinese students at Boston University differ on which system is betterA
A friend of mine in graduate school went to Boston University, so beyond that is all I know about it. I don't know what the school is good at, or it's reputation. Some high school programs are harder than colleges, so it varies. My daughter's IB was a great preparation for college, but I have seen a lot of students, where College is a huge shock since for them it's much harder than high school. After doing the SAT II, Chinese SAT II, SAT, AP Classes, etc. top students

Chinese Students Adjust to American Education - BU Today

Labels: ,

Calligraphy aids language learning

Writing Chinese Characters helps in Learning

There are at least three different styles of learning:
  • Auditory
  • Visual
  • Kinesthetic
The problem is in most schools, only the auditory with a little bit of visual is used. Think of the traditional lecture, where the Teacher lectures the class. The latest is where Power Point is used for teaching, where the kids can be vessels that are theoretically filled with knowledge. By writing Chinese Characters, the third type of learning is used, Kinesthetic.

Just writing Chinese Characters is only part of a well rounded program for Learning Chinese.

Calligraphy aids language learning - ChinaDaily USA

Labels: ,

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

No Truce in US-China Cyberwar

I am not surprised, the Chinese hacking group that got exposed in the NY Times, is now very active again.

No Truce in US-China Cyberwar - Via Meadia


Bo Po Mo vs. Pinyin for Learning Chinese


Pinyin vs. Bo Po Mo - Which works best?

Pinyin is the romanization of Chinese, and is used in Practical Chinese and Chinese Made Easy. Champion Chinese uses a system for the phonics called Bo Po Mo, and is the traditional way of teaching Chinese. There are arguments on which one is better. Pinyin is more popular. The argument for Bo Po Mo is that you get the pronunciation correct, where Pinyin has different sounds for English letters, which makes it more confusing to learn the proper pronunciation. There are other romanization systems than Pinyin that in my opinion make more sense (wade giles for example), but Pinyin has been pushed by the Chinese government, and has become the most popular.

Popular Pinyin based Textbooks for Kids:

Practical Chinese
A very hands on, down to earth series that works. 10 Levels available in Traditional Chinese, and 6 in Simplified. Books are smaller. My opinion is if your teaching Traditional Chinese Characters, this is a great series to go with. The author is a Chinese Teacher born in Taiwan, who got frustrated teaching her kids Chinese in the US, the existing teaching material did not work with them, so she wrote her own.
A more polished Chinese Textbook, very popular, written by two Chinese Teachers, one of who worked in Canada. A headache with Chinese textbooks, is some of them are written for use by native language learners, where this is targeted at secondary language learners. For ages 5-11, grades K-8. It comes with a CD.

For older students, Chinese Made Easy is the next series, and has more of a focus on writing:

Bo Po Mo Based Textbook for Kids

 Chinese Champions
Teaches use the Bo Po Mo system, and unfortunately only 1 level is available at this time. Bo Po Mo is used mainly in Chinese weekend schools. The author lives in the US, and was frustrated with the Chinese materials available in the US.

Labels: , ,

Choosing A Chinese Textbook

First Decide Simplified or Traditional Chinese Characters

A decision that has to be made is for teaching Simplified or Traditional Chinese Characters, and that often depends on where your Chinese teacher is from. If your teacher is from Taiwan, they usually prefer to teach Traditional Chinese Characters, if they are from China, Simplified. If you learn one, you can read the other. I compare it to the ability to drive a stick shift, vs. an Automatic. There are arguments on both sides which is better, but my opinion they are both equally hard.

More information:
Traditional or Simplified - Which To Learn

 Which Chinese Dialect?

 My opinion is Mandarin Chinese. I get customers who call me up and say they want to Learn Chinese? And my question is which Chinese, but I am polite and explain the difference and why they should choose Mandarin. Some callers have no idea about the difference between Cantonese and Mandarin. I have also gotten some callers, who are very focused on learning Cantonese, so I refer them to a traditional Chinese bookstore located in a larger older Chinatown that should be able to help them.

Chinese is Mandarin?
Cantonese: a Dialect in Peril?
Cantonese - Why Childbook does not carry it

And Who is Learning Chinese?

The best textbook depends on who is learning Chinese. For a student who speaks Chinese at home and parents are from Taiwan, I have different recommendations than for a home schooling student learning Chinese without a native speaker. If there a tutor available. If they want to learn Traditional vs. Simplified Chinese I also have different recommendations. It depends. And it depends on the age.

List of Chinese Textbooks
Kids' Learning Chinese Textbooks & Curriculum

Textbooks for ABC's - Chinese Speakers, but born overseas
Recommendations for Learning Chinese Textbooks for Kids
Chinese Made Easy for Kids Vs. Chinese Made Easy

Labels: , ,

Monday, May 13, 2013

IB's Future in CA

Per the article funding for the International Baccalaureate in CA may be cut. The article was very positive about how it prepares students for college, which I agree with. And the fact that its harder than an AP prep curriculum. The part that was not mentioned was how colleges seem to give it the same weight as taking AP classes, even though you might have a lower GPA making you less competitive to get into the college of your choice.

Testing California's Commitment to Education - Forbes

Labels: ,

Schools And Colleges Are Teaching The Wrong Type Of Math | StateImpact Florida

I agree with this. For most students, the type of Math taught in High School required for graduation is a waste of time (Algebra II). And the type that would be useful, statistics, is not taught.

Per the report just 5% of students use the math taught in the typical sequence, Geometry, Algebra II, Pre-Calculus and Calculus.

California requires two years of math, including Algebra 1. US's and Cal States require 3-4 years of math. Which may explain why the typical Cal State student, 60% require remediation in Math, English, or both.

Schools And Colleges Are Teaching The Wrong Type Of Math | StateImpact Florida

Labels: ,

Chinatown Buses - Statistics were wrongly calculated?

This quote from Mark Twain comes to mind:

  "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."

Government Assault on the Chinatown Bus Industry Fueled By Bogus Federal Study - Reason Magazine
An influential report by the National Transportation Safety Board used the wrong data and committed "statistical malpractice."


China may not overtake America this century?

I was surprised by the article. The question is can China grow fast enough, before demographics caused by the 1 child policy potentially reduce it's future growth. China demographics are aging quickly.

My personal opinion is China has come so far and so fast over the last 30 years, do not under estimate it. Of course I would also give the same advice about the United States. The US has the habit of falling forward.

China may not overtake America this century after all - Telegraph

Labels: ,

Xi Jinping’s vision: Chasing the Chinese dream

Xi Jinping’s vision: Chasing the Chinese dream - The Economist

I was trying to find the video by Chen Sisi Chinese dream. She is the star of a singing company from China's nuclear missile armed forces.


College Prices Cut?

List price stays the same, but the real price goes down through financial aid. What matters to parents, is how much they are actually paying. And I agree, value is what should be focused on by students and their parents. Pick the major first, and then the school.

Colleges Cut Prices by Providing More Financial Aid - The Wall Street Journal


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

My Review - Seeking Asian Female

I watched the movie last night with my wife, Seeking Asian Female on PBS. It's about a white guy who marries a Chinese lady, half his age (30 vs. 60). The Chinese lady changes his life in a lot of ways he did not expect. A great quote in the movie  "was marriage is hard".

My take:
  • The guy is very nice, but gets a lot more than he expected with Sandy, his wife.
  • Sandy, the wife is smart
  • The lady came from a very rural background, went to a large city and rose from being a factory worker to working in an office. I would not under estimate her.
  • Sandy and Steven actually seem to love each other (the marriage was more than just for a green card).
  • The film seems very truthful.
  • The director became a lot more involved then she expected
  • I would have liked to have heard more about the film makers relationship with her White husband (she is 3rd generation Chinese American, and grew up as an all American girl in Missouri).
  • I am surprised there are so many people involved as writers for the film.
The film has also won a bunch of awards.

The TV version only has 53 minutes, where the full version has 82 minutes.

Labels: ,

Seeking Asian Female - Watch online through June 2nd

You can watch the video, Seeking Asian Female on the PBS website for free through June 2nd. I highly recommend it for anyone in a mixed relationship (Chinese & White). It's even better if you understand Mandarin, but still good for those of us who don't. It's a feel good film that I enjoyed watching with my wife last night.


Labels: ,

Monday, May 6, 2013

Suckered - Top 5 Chinese Restaurant in OC

I bought a Travel Zoo voucher for what was billed as one of the top 5 Chinese restaurants in Orange County CA.  It was a 50% off deal, and I thought it was a good deal. Did I check Yelp? No.

Did I make a mistake, Yes.

My mistake:
  1. Look at who does the review. By the pictures, the Chinese / Asian reviewers were very negative on the restaurant. The White reviewers were pretty positive.
  2. I should not have taken my wife to a Chinese restaurant with a daily deal. Both of us are very opinionated on Chinese food.
  3. We are spoiled in the San Gabriel Valley area with some of the best Chinese food in the US.
  4. My wife and my preference for Chinese food is great food at a low cost, ambiance is a lessor priority.
  5. I should have looked at the location of the restaurant on a map before buying it. It was a lot farther than I thought.

Labels: ,

They are all so beautiful - 5 Web episodes

The producer of Seeking Asian Women also produced 5 shorts for the web you can view at http://theyreallsobeautiful.com/

The first on Yellow Fever. Interesting to watch.

The entire inter-racial marriage between Asian and White has been interesting to observe in the US culture. The majority is between White Males, and Asian Females. I have seen a few with an Asian Male with a White Female.

Labels: , ,

Seeking Asian Female Move on PBS

Looks very good! If you are in a mixed relationship, you will understand.

Playing tonight, in LA area at 10PM 5-6-2013. Also available on iTunes.

Movie Website:

Interesting quote:

According to the filmmaker, there is an overriding perception that women of that particular race are more docile and make for obedient life partners, a stereotype that is offensive and often untrue.

Seeking Asian Female - Write up from the Daily Mail
The allure of 'yellow fever': New documentary explores why so many white American men aspire to marry Asian women - Daily Mail UK

About the movie:
Fourth-generation Chinese-American filmmaker Debbie Lum was inspired by personal experience to discover the psychology behind yellow fever. In the documentary, she follows the lives of Steven, a white 60-year-old Asiaphile, and Sandy, 30, his Chinese mail-order bride

Rotten Tomatoes Reviews:

Foreign Bride as a Fetish and a Person - NY Times Review

Labels: ,

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Learn To Read Chinese In Eight Minutes

Icons are so cute! It reminds me of the book long is a dragon (out of print, unfortunately), which showed how Chinese have evolved. The author has broken down 2,000 Chinese characters to their components, making it easier to learn Chinese.  Her website: http://chineasy.org/

I look forward to seeing where she is going. Her FB page has more.

Learn To Read Chinese In Eight Minutes - Forbes

The hardest part of Learning Chinese in my opinion is the characters.


Company Info
Account Info
Customer Service
News & Info