‘Ch’ Pronunciation And A Language Learning Method From Japan

Today I felt like fixing my ‘ch’ pronunciation so I checked my Chinese pronunciation book again. It’s a Japanese book and the explanation goes like this:

  1. Say ta,ta,ta,ta… (the usual Japanese sound ‘ta’) slowly
    Notice the shape of your tongue and where it touches inside your mouth. Say ‘ta, ta, ta…’ with sound and make sure you know the position that your tongue touches.
  2. Make your tongue tip touches that position and slowly say ta, ta, ta, ta…
    There will be no ‘ta’ sound came out, only a sound of strong and sharp breath, but don’t worry and just pronounce it that way. In this process, remember the position of your tongue tip and the sense of pronouncing with only your tongue tip.
  3. With only your tongue tip, pronounce ‘chi, chi, chi, chi…’ slowly.

I didn’t really understand how to do the instructions, but I tried my best to imitate the CD.

And then I think I did it. I think I can say ‘ch’. Of course I can’t be sure because I will need a real Chinese person to tell me whether I pronounce ‘ch’ correctly but I’m satisfied enough. For now.

From this YouTube video, I learned the expression:

Have you had meal yet? 你吃饭了吗?Nǐ chīfàn le ma?
Yes, I have. 吃了。Chī le.

I said ‘你吃饭了吗?’ to Google Voice Search on my tablet and it showed my  Chinese right! I was so happy I took a screen capture.


Google Voice Search can understand my Chinese!

And then I tried the same thing with Naver Papago but it failed to understand my ‘你吃饭了吗?’ . Maybe the app is just not that good at recognizing Chinese language? Yeah, that must be it. Because my Chinese is perfect. Just kidding.

It’s day 12. I’ve learned 96 words.
I’m surprised that I’m still using the same book for 12 days in a row because I usually got super bored with the same material on day 4. I think Roy Nishizawa is right that even just thinking ‘I must study’ to yourself actually kills your motivation to study.  He is a Japanese author who wrote books in Japanese about his method to learn English. He calls himself English Doctor. His method is meant for adults or people who are having difficulties in the memorization department and think they are not good at learning English (me, with my Chinese).

In one of his books, he wrote that focusing on listening and reading in large quantity only would not give you satisfying results and this made people quit learning altogether before they got any result (Aha! I knew it!). He wrote that learners should focus on quality than quantity. I’m in the middle of reading his books but I already feel ‘hopeful’ again about learning Chinese. His books about learning English are my source of motivation for learning Chinese right now.

Yesterday he quoted my tweet about his book.

I was thrilled that he noticed. I tweeted to him in English asking him to release audio version of his books and he ‘liked’ my tweet. ###


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