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Monday, October 28, 2013

Which Chinese Textbooks for a 5th Grader - Ask Ray

When figuring out the right textbook a couple of questions you need to answer:
1. Traditional or Simplified.

2. Is there access to a native Chinese Speaker for checking the work?
I am going to assume Simplified Chinese, with limited access to a Chinese Teacher.

My list of textbooks for grades 6+
I would recommend:
Discovering Chinese

It has a good teacher manual that is in English and lots of supplemental material. I like practical Chinese a lot, but it's not as polished and does not have a Teacher Manual. Chinese Made Easy is widely used, but you need a Chinese tutor with it. Kuaile Hanyu - Happy Chinese I like the CD Rom a huge amount (does not work on Mac). The textbooks you need a Chinese Teacher, but they are great for Middle School students.

I hope this helps,

Ray, Owner
Learning Chinese Materials for Kids

My 5th grader was in a Chinese immersion classroom from kindergarten thru 3rd grade, but now is in reg class.  We want her to keep up her Chinese, but we need recommendation on what kind of materials are appropriate.  She's not a beginner.  Is there intermediate materials that would be appropriate for her?  Would luv a workbook to practice characters.  She can write Chinese sentences like "I love my friends...in my house I have an older sister, 2 older brothers and my mom & dad, etc"

Can u make some suggestions?  Don't want it too easy.  She will use these materials at school when other kids are doing  Spanish.


Friday, October 25, 2013

Sued Over Pay, Condé Nast Ends Internship Program

I have mixed feelings on this, but I understand Conde Nast's viewpoint.

The name recognition you get on your resume is incredible, but no pay is hard.

Sued Over Pay, Condé Nast Ends Internship Program - The New York Times

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Is Amazon a Charity?

Amazon is an amazing company, and I have been a customer for a long time. When they were first starting, they sent out travel mugs to some customers, and I still have one. But, their profit margins don't make sense. It's hard to keep on losing money as a business. The raising of their free shipping minimum from $25 to $35 is a big change. Shipping, unfortunately costs.

This is a great quote:

“Amazon, as best I can tell, is a charitable organization being run by elements of the investment community for the benefit of consumers,” Slate’s Matthew Yglesias joked earlier this year.

The Amazon Mystery: What America's Strangest Tech Company Is Really Up To - The Atlantic

Same Old Amazon: All Sales, No Profit - Business Week

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Friday, October 18, 2013

Macy's in China?

My advice would be start small, and see what works, and does not work. With joint ventures, be very very careful. From what I read the huge headaches for e-commerce operations in China is logistics and payment.

Macy’s pauses on selling online in China - Internet Retailer
The retailer backs off plans to sell via a Chinese e-retailer that it invested in.

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US Chinatowns Disappearing?

I have mixed feelings on this. Luxury condo's are going up in Chinatowns industrial spaces, that is resulting in hipsters moving in. Some of this has happened in LA.

US Chinatowns face risk of disappearing: year-long study warns - ChinaDaily USA

My list of ChinaTowns of the US:


Thursday, October 17, 2013

China Agency Downgrades US Credit Rating

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Chinese Media on Us Debt Deal


Debt debate turns America into a laughing stock: China mocks default limit 'monkey business' as it depicts the U.S. as a beggar

  • Cartoons in Chinese state media ridicule US attempts to raise debt ceiling
  • Chinese minister: Capitol 'gentlemen' are damaging America's reputation


Strange Themed Restroom Cafe Opens

I noticed this restaurant about a month ago, when I was getting some Dim Sum to go in the same plaza. I googled the concept, and found out there was a couple of successful restaurants like this in Taiwan that were doing well. The link below has some pictures.

Outrageously Themed Magic Restroom Cafe Soft Opens,  - LA.Eater

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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Young Chinese: Take This Factory Job and Shove It

Another big change...

The question are there enough other jobs in China. China has been increasing the amount of college graduates, the problem is there have not been enough of the white collar jobs to go with this. Something similar is happening in the US, where many college graduates take jobs that a college degree is not needed. Another challenge is as China's wages increase, automation and moving to other locations become more attractive to factory owners.

Young Chinese: Take This Factory Job and Shove It - Via Media

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1418 Admiral Zheng discovered America?

My opinion is Admiral Zheng did visit America, unfortunately due to internal politics China stopped visiting the outside world. It's amazing the difference in size between Admiral Zheng's ships, and the ones in Columbus's fleet.

Zheng's Fleet Vs. Columbus:
Zheng's ship was 400 ft. long vs.  Columbus's largest ship was only 85 feet long
300 ships, vs. 3 ships
28,000 men vs. 90

Does this map from 1418 prove historian's controversial claim that the New World was discovered by the CHINESE 70 years before Columbus? - Daily News

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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Turkey gets Chinese ABM System

I am surprised that Turkey is buying from China an anti-missile defense. A reason that does not go into the messy political issues that I do not want to write about, is Turkey wants to export more weapons, and China is offering technology sharing.

A point not mentioned, is this also shows how high tech China's weapons have become. Through what ever means, China has advanced the technology of their weapons considerably in the past 30 years. The US is perceived as the leading Weapons Technology supplier in the world, and is by weapons exports by sales per Wikipedia, Russia is 2nd, and China fifth.

Turkey goes for Chinese take-away defense - Asia Times

I read it about this on The American Interest, and found the article with more details.

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Why Do So Many Americans Drop Out of College?

Good article:
 Why Do So Many Americans Drop Out of College? - The Atlantic

This quote is mostly correct:

Obviously, the system we have now, where students flock to college, only to be overwhelmed by it, isn't working. 

Should read:

Obviously, the system we have now, where most students flock to college, only to be overwhelmed by it, isn't working.

Not all students are overwhelmed by college. My daughter should be graduating from her college in 3 years.

The drop out rate at my under graduate, Cal Poly Pomona (great school for Engineering, and some other degrees) is around 50%. 4 Year Graduation rate is 12%, and in 6 years 50%. A bit of Schadenfreude, but Of course my wife's college, Cal State Fullerton (great business program), has slightly higher drop out rate. The school my daughter is going to has a lower drop out rate.

It's surprising how much the graduation rate varies by college. When selecting a college, graduation rate is something you need to find and look at. The other piece of useful information, sometimes it's hard to find, is the starting graduation salaries and employment rates for a major from that college. A great piece of advice I read when helping my daughter select colleges, was select the major, and then the college.


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