First Chinese Book


Only 1 sentence on this page. 😀


Some words I looked up.

I finished reading my first Chinese book. It’s a very thin book from Disney’s Lilo and Stitch series. There are only 20 sentences in the picture book. LOL. And it’s a bilingual English-Chinese (with pinyin). I doubt that I can remember these words from the picture book now. I don’t know what the title means 小魔星,’small evil planet’? ###


Learn Chinese – Spotify Playlist

I have Spotify Premium subscription (49,900 rupiah a month) but even if you don’t want to pay, you can listen to songs on Spotify for free, with a short advertisement in between.

This is Spotify official playlist ‘Learn Chinese’

The length is 27 hours 49 minutes in total. That’s a lot of Chinese expressions!

I’ll try finish this one first: Learn in Your Car – Mandarin Chinese – Level 1
. I imitated/repeated the Chinese and also English expressions on Lesson 1 and 2 today. I enjoyed it.

I want. 我要。Wǒ yào.
I don’t want. 我不要 Wǒ búyào.
Where? 哪里? 哪儿?Nǎli? Nǎr?

Just reading something in order to learn a language might be boring but sounding out foreign words -even only to yourself- is actually fun. Maybe it helps reduce stress, too. Like singing karaoke.

Now that I can differentiate Chinese tones -not perfectly, but better than the first time I found the playlist- I finally find those audio courses on Spotify useful. I think it’s good for revising Chinese words/sentences I already learned from a textbook, but it’s just impossible for me to remember new ones just by listening only, without looking at them in writing. But I can look them up in dictionary.

There are also many other albums for learning Chinese (and other languages) on Spotify. ###

New Books

My book basket

My book basket


Chineasy – The New Way to Read Chinese by Shaolan


Road to Success – ‘Threshold’ Level from Beijing Language and Culture University Press


中国語が面白いほど身につく本 by 鈴木義昭 and 王延偉(おう えんい) /’a book that will make you master Chinese so easily that you will find it amusing’


Lilo and Stitch – bilingual English-Chinese for 3-7 years old from Singapore, only about 20 sentences.


Some Japanese books, bunko (mini) sized


This Japanese novel has 2 covers: original and movie version

The books in Japanese and Chinese I bought at Kinokuniya in Plaza Senayan, Jakarta last Sunday. The English ones I bought online on Book Depository. ###

Whale Browser from Naver (Korean)

Naver's papago on Naver's Whale browser

Whale has built-in Papago (online translator)

Naver has launched its own browser ‘Whale’ (beta version) for free download: so I tried it yesterday and I found it useful to help me learn Chinese.

  • E-books from Google Play and e-magazines from Fujisan load smoothly and faster on Whale than on Firefox or Chrome, which means less frustration for me when reading my Chinese textbooks.
  • I can use Papago (online translator) as a pop-up window when I study from Chinese e-book so I don’t need to move from tab to tab to look up words and sentences. The Chinese audio for Papago sounds even more natural than Naver Translate but I think it would be better for learners if it showed pinyin/romanization.

Whale is entirely in Korean, maybe they will release English version later? Maybe not? ###



Chinese Collocations

I saw a Japanese publisher tweeted this English textbook: 英語はもっとコロケーションで話そう(Let’s Speak More English with Collocations). On the cover: ‘intense pain’, ‘throbbing pain’, ‘chronic pain’, ‘do business’, ‘establish business’, ‘discuss business’, ‘accept invitations’, ‘accept facts’, ‘accept challenges’, ‘finally decide’, ‘reluctantly decide’, ‘unanimously decide’, and so on.

I looked up the word ‘collocation’ on online English dictionary (Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries) and got this definition:

Collocation: a combination of words in a language, that happens very often and more frequently than would happen by chance.
‘Resounding success’ and ‘crying shame’ are English collocations.

A search on YouTube led me to this video: Collocations In English – Vocabulary Lesson.

From this video by BBC Learning English I got this tip for learning vocabulary:

Instead of learning individual new words, try learning small chunks of language. They will be easier to learn and they make your English sound a lot more natural.

learn small chunks

BBC Learning English on YouTube

I thought it was interesting and maybe I should apply it to my Chinese because my Chinese word book sometimes teaches usages for words like this: 裤子 [kùzi] (trousers) – 穿裤子 [chuān kùzi] (to wear trousers).

I also found this Japanese website to memorize a lot of Chinese collocations (with audio):

Chinese Collocations

Chinese Collocations (website in Japanese)

From now on, I will pay attention to memorizing Chinese words in ‘small chunks’.
I think it is true that it will build my confidence in speaking Chinese than just memorize Chinese words individually.
Even though, memorizing in small chunks is no small task either. 加油!###

Basic Sentence Patterns

From the book ‘233 Core Patterns for Chinese Conversations’ (중국어회화 핵심패턴233) written by Uhm Sang-cheon (엄상천), translated roughly:

A = B

Pattern no. 1: A is B

Do you know what you should do in order to speak Chinese fluently?
I will tell you the simplest way to do it.

  • Step 1: learn and master the sentence patterns (which are the bones)
  • Step 2: learn and master the vocabulary (which is the meat that stick to the bones)
  • Step 3: practice the sentence patterns over and over by changing the words.

All you have to do is repeat those 3 steps over and over. Practice until you master the patterns and vocabulary, until you can say them without hesitation.

Sounds doable. I’ll start learning sentence patterns from the book tomorrow. Maybe I can learn a pattern a day.

I purchased the book 중국어회화 핵심패턴233 on Google Play (with audio inside the e-book): ###