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Friday, April 18, 2014

Cantonese in Hong Kong, for non Native Speakers

Interesting:
http://www.soundstrue.com/shop/The-MBSR-Online-Course/4470.pd

Observations from the article:
  1. It's hard for a non native speaker to learn Cantonese in Hong Kong. The materials are made for native speakers.
  2. If you get the tones wrong in Chinese, native Chinese speakers will mock you. No comment about people in my family doing that to me when ever I speak Mandarin. Or asking me to repeat a word, after Of course, I don't do it when they make mistakes in English, and yes, that is a double standard. Or may be it's just funnier when a mistake is made in Chinese by a non native speaker?
  3. Great quote - Some students compared their experience of composing Chinese characters with drawing pictures, which, according to their teachers, could only be learned through rote learning and frequent practice. They found Chinese characters difficult to learn and easy to forget.

I am not understanding this paragraph:

Written Chinese is challenging for Chinese and non-Chinese speakers alike. This point is encapsulated in the title of an informative research-based book, Difficult Characters, which presents compelling empirical evidence showing speech plays a crucial role in the process of becoming literate in Chinese (and, indeed, in any language).

This makes sense:
Written Chinese is challenging for Chinese and non-Chinese speakers alike.

Not sure about this, since Chinese is Character based, and is not phonic like English:
showing speech plays a crucial role in the process of becoming literate in Chinese (and, indeed, in any language).

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