How to Learn Mandarin Chinese in 10 Minutes Every Day?

Introduction

Are you a parent thinking about introducing your child to a new, non-native language – Mandarin Chinese? Do you seek to make language learning a daily routine of your child? Are you on the lookout for a learning program that can teach the Mandarin Chinese language to children in enjoyable and gainful ways? If yes, then this article is for you. It provides practical tips and guidelines on following a routine to make your child learn Mandarin Chinese in 10 minutes of their daily time. The article also calls attention to the new-age techniques for children of all age groups to help them get well-versed in Mandarin Chinese.

A Little Background of the Chinese Language and Culture

Learning a non-native language is an added advantage in today’s globalized world. Many parents now opt for Mandarin Chinese when contemplating picking a new language for their children. However, it is vital to understand the attributes and culture of the language before starting.

Attributes

Mandarin Chinese is a tonal language, wherein the meaning of the words changes based on the tone used to pronounce them. Unlike English, it does not use the full-fledged grammar of verb tenses and conjugations. The written form of Mandarin Chinese contains several characters in various forms like ideographs, pictographs, and visual symbols. Each character has a set of strokes and is written in a specified manner to represent an object, word, or concept.

Culture

Mandarin Chinese script is a group of Sinitic languages with Beijing dialect natively spoken across several parts of northern and southwestern China. Chinese culture is unique and has diverse expositions in its art, heritage, food, customs, and festivals. The traditional Chinese cultural values exert a dominant influence on East Asian traditions, etiquette, and philosophy.

Why Learn Mandarin Chinese?

Mandarin Chinese is one of the most powerful and widely spoken languages worldwide. With China becoming the second largest economic power, the popularity of this language is spiraling the demand among the masses. Thus, learning Mandarin Chinese will make it possible for your child to communicate with billions of people worldwide. It will also increase their prospects of getting admissions to reputed international schools and broaden the scope of choosing career options in the future.

Writing Mandarin Chinese at an early age helps the young learners gain proficiency in reading and interpreting the characters and symbols. It helps enhance their visual communication, analytical, and problem-solving skills. The detailed study of patterns and counting the strokes of the characters develops their mathematical and cognitive abilities and improves their language fluency.

Actionable Tips to Learn Mandarin Chinese In 10 Minutes a Day

Once you have made up your mind about making your child learn Mandarin Chinese, it is time to take the initial steps to get started. Hard work and focused learning can help them learn Mandarin Chinese in 10 minutes every day. Learning a language is an art that gets furbished with practice. Persistent reading, writing, speaking, and listening lead to the desired results. For this, your role as a parent is to create a learning environment for your child at home.

Here are a few tips to help your child learn Mandarin Chinese fast.

1. Pinyin is a starting point for non-native learners

Mandarin Chinese is based on five tones to distinguish letters and words. Different uses of tonality may change the entire meaning and concept. Thus, use Pinyin to gain proficiency in articulating the words correctly. It is a Latinized version of Mandarin Chinese (an official Romanization system) that transcribes the Chinese characters by using diacritics to indicate the tones of different words. It helps with correct pronunciation and comprehension of the words. Pinyin is a powerful system to help learners write words by listening to the tones and phonics. Thus, practicing 10 minutes daily on this system will help them learn Mandarin Chinese fast.

2. Conversing in Mandarin Chinese helps

As with learning their mother tongue, children will attempt speaking Mandarin Chinese when they listen to it more often from their parents. If Mandarin Chinese is the native language of one of the parents, they must converse with the child in this language as much as possible. Prompt the child to pay attention to the tonality and pronunciation. Motivate them to articulate in a like manner. The more they practice, the better they learn. If you do not know the language, look out for native speakers in your neighborhood to enable your child to converse with them regularly.

3. Practice is the key

If you enroll your children in language classes, ask them daily the new words they learned and encourage them to teach you those words. Make them practice reciting and writing the newly-learned characters and words. Help them revise the lessons daily for at least 10 minutes for long-standing retention.

4. Storybooks are effective learning tools

Buy some good bilingual Mandarin Chinese storybooks for your child. Ace Early Learning, a leading digital Chinese reading platform, provides an assortment of high-quality books to make the reading experience fun for your child. If you know the language, read the stories with them. Point to the words as you read and change the voice tone on specific syllables to make them understand semantic differences.

As for non-native parents, sign up for e-books (with read-aloud features), online videos, and audiobooks to make them watch and listen to the Mandarin Chinese stories. Daily story reading and listening habits will help them learn Mandarin Chinese in 10 minutes.

5. Cartoons are a fun way to learn

Children love watching cartoon shows and often imitate their favorite cartoon characters. Subscribe to Mandarin Chinese cartoon channels for your child. Many cartoon shows are now available online that are entertaining, informative, and engaging. Change the language settings of your existing English cartoon channels to Mandarin Chinese (select subtitles as English). Make them watch cartoon programs for 10 minutes a day to enhance their listening comprehension and accelerate the learning process.

6. Creative resources make learning playful

Playing while learning keeps children immersed and receptive. Gather creative resources and materials to make learning playful for them, such as

  • Chinese board games (such as Scrabble) and flashcards
  • Popular Mandarin Chinese music videos (songs and rhymes) and movie CDs (short movies with subtitles in English)
  • Online Chinese games and quizzes
  • Online bilingual dictionaries

Thus, setting aside 10 minutes in a day to use these creative learning techniques will go a long way in sustaining their interest in learning Mandarin Chinese.

Conclusion

Nearly a billion of the world population speaks Mandarin Chinese, making it the most widely spoken language on the planet. It is not surprising that many parents are now choosing it as a second or third language for their children. Just as learning English or any other language, learning Mandarin Chinese requires time, effort, and patience. Daily learning practices aid in the better retention of the language and persistence of the learning process and not making it overwhelming for the children.

So, hand-hold your child in their journey to learn Chinese through your constant encouragement and support. The everyday tips will make the learning journey more easy and enjoyable for them.

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