Interview With a Polyglot

foto (1)Today, we bring to you an ardent language lover who shares some of his unique tips on how to approach the Chinese language. A graduate of International relations and Chinese studies,  Vladimir currently lives in Taiwan working as a language consultant for a Taiwanese company.  Slovakia-born, he has lived in different parts of Europe for the most part in Slovakia, Czech republic, Austria, Great Britain, France and Italy and outside of Europe in the USA and Russia.  Vladimir is not only fluent in Chinese but in a number of other languages and agreed to give us an insider’s view on how to best absorb, love and experience the languages we speak! Enjoy!

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Josh Summer on Exploring Xinjiang and the Silk Road

Josh SummersJosh Summer lives in one of China’s lesser known and remote provinces. His blog is not simply a great introduction to Xinjiang, but an amusing, touching and extremely practical and personal companion to all those who are planning to travel or are simply interested in learning more about this faraway land! Josh has been running his Xinjiang blog, Far West China, since the summer of 2006, when he and his wife arrived to the area. He mentions that back then “the only thing we knew was that we’d be teaching English in a remote part of China, but nothing could have prepared us for the adventure that lay ahead”. A few years and hundreds of blog posts later, it is safe to say that he has become an expert in the area. Let’s hear what he has to say. Continue reading

“I want to be bilingual”: Letter from a Newborn Baby

I-Want-to-Be-BilingualAdam Beck is the blogger of Bilingual Monkeys, “a fun jungle of ideas and inspiration for raising bilingual kids (without going bananas).” Based in Hiroshima, Japan, he is a former teacher at Hiroshima International School and now a writer for the Hiroshima Peace Media Center. Adam is the father of two children who are bilingual in English and Japanese. Continue reading

A peek into Selly’s Little World

sellyThis week, we bring to you a  very special girl, whose positive outlook on life, the world and its mysterious ways is contagious.At least that’s how everyone who read her interview here in Chinese Tools feels! German-born Selly lived in Ireland for a pretty good amount of time, before China won her heart for good! Her blog, Selly’s little world, is an extremely entertaining, moving and certainly poetic anthology of thoughts, experiences and pieces of good literary work. As its title indicates, it is a window to a new world, an inspirational description of life in China! Enjoy meeting its creator!

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The World of Chinese: A window to China’s greatest stories

2013-Issue-6A language is a window to a new and enchanting world; a world of different cultural, political and social complications and intricacies. As a foreigner and language learner, one might feel lost when in contact with this utterly unknown environment. There is only one way to deal with this shock: delve in, find good sources of information and let them be your guiding light in your effort of getting to know a new country. Chinese Tools is proud to present a magazine that will definitely help you discover lesser known or under-exposed aspects of China. Continue reading

Dani Wang on how to Grasp Chinese

Grasp Chinese _photoIn order boost the efforts of all you Chinese language learners, Chinese Tools is presenting to you a language school with an alternative approach to learning. GraspChinese is a company founded by Beijing-born Dani Wang, who combined her deep knowledge of her native tongue with her profound understanding of the Western ways of learning, experienced first-hand through her studies in Europe.  Chinese Tools spoke with her about the difficulties and delights of both learning and teaching Chinese.  Continue reading

A guide to impractical living and other tales of China

mary anne 2She is the creator of not one, but three China-related blogs, which despite their different orientations have one thing in common: they tell the story of life in China as perceived by a talented blogger with a unique outlook on the world and its complexities! Reading through Mary Anne Oxendale’s Totally impractical guide to living in Shanghai one can find anything from information about Shanghai to personal accounts of what learning Chinese means in practice.  Her second website, Wok with me Baby has an element of surprise: Instead of going for your typical exotic cookery blog, Mary Anne chose to document her experience as a westerner trying to cook her own food in a country where ovens are few and far between.  Last but not least, Awesome Mops of China tells the untold story of millions of Chinese mops. A combination of storytelling and photography, this website depicts China in a most unique and amusing way.  Continue reading

Tales of home cooking: An interview with Pat Tanumihardja

paperback_coverpaperback_coverFor some, cooking is a family affair: A way of adapting the wisdom of previous generations to today’s fast-paced, multicultural and complicated world. And there are innumerable families whose members left their birthplace to make it in faraway lands, carrying with them their ways of living and more importantly, a taste of home.  In her successful book The Asian Grandmother’s Cookbook, author Pat Tanumihardja has assembled 130 tantalizing Asian dishes revealed to her by Asian grandmothers, the ultimate keepers of Asia’s cultural and culinary past.  Chinese tools is proud to present you Pat Tanumihardja, a unique food and travel writer, blogger and photographer, whose work has been revered by critics and food aficionados alike.

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Jocelyn Eikenburg speaks of China

087Jocelyn Eikenburg is not just another expat blogging about her China adventures. She’s the writer and creator of Speaking of China, a blog about love, family and relationships in China, with a special focus on intercultural relationships and in particular relationships between Chinese men and Western women. Last year, Jocelyn was interviewed by BBC News about Speaking of China and her cross-cultural marriage. Jocelyn’s writing is also featured in Unsavory Elements (Earnshaw Press) and the forthcoming How Does One Dress to Buy Dragonfruit? (Signal 8 Press). Continue reading

China through the lens – Eric Leleu

camera 1China through the Lens and Chinese Tools have the joy of hosting the work of yet another photographer, whose special outlook on China has received international attention. France-born Eric Leleu settled in China in 2005 and has been actively working as a photographer ever since.   Continue reading