In doing some research for a publisher in Hong Kong for whom we are going to sell a brand new Chinese textbook, I found this interesting list online. Hope you find it helpful!
The Benefits of Studying Chinese
Many students do not realize the benefits of studying Chinese and what makes it easy. There are many benefits to studying Chinese. Here is a list of reasons to study Chinese and why it can easier to study than other languages.
Why study Chinese?
- China is the most populous country in the world with over 1.4 billion people. Mandarin is spoken by almost one billion people. It is the #1 spoken language in the world. One out of five people in the world is Chinese.
- Mandarin is spoken in the People's Republic of China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, The Philippines, and Mongolia.
- China is one of the world's oldest civilizations, over 5000 years old.
- China has the second largest economy in the world. Knowing Chinese will allow students to compete effectively in the global economy of the future.
- China is one of America's largest trading partners.
- Many American companies do business in China, including Motorola, Coca Cola, and Ford.
- Knowing Chinese may be an edge when competing for a job. The demand for business people who know Chinese is skyrocketing.
- China is playing a major role in world affairs and will continue to do so.
- A May 2006 Newsweek article stated that "In U.S. homes, Chinese has eclipsed French, German and Italian and become the third most commonly spoken language after English and Spanish."
- By studying Chinese, students will develop an appreciation for Chinese culture and history.
- Leaning a second language develops critical and creative thinking skills.
Why Chinese is easy?
- There are no verb conjugations.
- There is no gender.
- There is no noun-adjective agreement.
- There are no articles (the, a, an).
- There is no number agreement (three books).
- Numbers are easy: 20 = 2-10s, èr shì; 30 = 3-10s, san shì
- Days of the week and months are easy. Monday = day one of the week; Tuesday = day two of the week; Wednesday = day three of the week…; January = one month, February = two month, March = three month…
- There are no capital and small letters.
- If you know 1000 commonly used characters, you will recognize 90% of the characters in Chinese newspapers.
What makes Chinese hard?
- There are four different tones.
- Character writing can be difficult with all of the strokes. There is a Romanized system called pinyin; some letter-sounds combinations are different from English combinations.
- Some structures can be difficult, such as measure words. The word modifying the number changes depending on whether it is general, paper/book, cup/bottle, etc