Today, most beginner foreign students of the Chinese language are taught concepts that do not help them understand the fundamentals of the language. For instance, they are asked to pronounce sounds over and over, memorize characters without understanding their meaning and origin, know the number of strokes of each character and such. However, none of these details provides an explanation useful or meaningful to a beginner.
◙ Chinese Step-by-Step™ has a total of 10 lessons. Each of them introduces a new topic:
1) How to write Chinese characters
2) The structure of a Chinese character
3) The function of sound in the Chinese written language
4) The evolution of the Chinese characters
5) Simplified and Traditional Chinese writing
6) Looking up Chinese characters in a Chinese dictionary
7) Are “characters” “words”?
8) Chinese Idioms
9) The Chinese Zodiac and the use of radicals representing animals in characters
10) Dialects, sounds and borrowings for phonetic reasons
◙ Chinese Step-by-Step Level 1 introduces a set of 200 Chinese characters, which are the most important and commonly used Chinese characters a beginner should know.
◙ Each lesson has its set of interactive exercises (in total 60) that test your newly acquired knowledge and memory:
• Match a definition to a character; match a character to a definition;
• Character writing
• Identify the radical in a character
• Identify tones and sounds
• Convert a sound to pinyin
• Convert a sound to a character
• Story dictation: convert a story to pinyin
• Story dictation: convert a story to characters
Only when all exercises for a given lesson have been successfully passed with a minimum of 60% will you be able to move on to the next lesson.
◙ “Final Tests” consists of 3 large interactive tests that cover the entire knowledge you will have acquired in the lessons.
◙ Finally, once all lessons have been successfully passed, in “Practical Chinese” you will be given a short story in Chinese that you will translate, read, take a dictation, record and listen to your own voice.
Chinese Step-by-Step Level 1 is part of a series of 4 levels that are developed in collaboration with the University of Shenzhen (深圳大学). The content of Chinese Step-by-Step™ is provided by the Professor Liu Huijun (刘慧军).
April 22, 2014 Initial Release