Chinese Filler Words – How to “Um” and “Uh” in Chinese

Yoyo chinese picYoyo chinese is a video-based online education site focused on teaching Mandarin through an English-speaker’s perspective. This particular article, written by one of their course designers, Julie Tha Gyaw, teaches authentic Mandarin filler words. Learn all 4 of them and you’ll be um-ing and uh-ing like a native Chinese speaker in no time.

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Roaming the streets for Chinese food

peachFrank Kasell, the creator of chinesestreetfood, has set out to explore one of China’s most interesting and unknown aspects: food served in the streets, food that the Republic’s real people eat! Browsing through his work, one will understand that despite Chinese cuisine’s international fame, in reality westerners don’t have a clue about it. So sit back and savor one of the most delicious interviews ever hosted by Chinese Tools.  Continue reading

Aaron Myers’ 25 Ways to Find or Create Comprehensible Input

edll_headerAaron Myers, the creator of The Everyday Language Learner, is the most appropriate person to encourage those of you who feel stuck in your learning process. An ardent language learner himself, Aaron created his blog merely out of the need to inspire, inform and help other learners navigate the road to fluency in another language. Aaron was generous to share one of his articles with Chinese Tools. Enjoy and get inspired! Continue reading

Adopting in China? Do your homework!

ccai picMany foreign couples considering adoption from China are overwhelmed with all the information and the practical and cultural difficulties arising from such a choice. Adoption is an immense step and though it is considered the ultimate gift in the life of both an orphaned child and the parents that welcome it to their home, the procedure might be long, dreary and exhausting. In our effort to further explore the matter, we contacted CCAI, one of China’s top adoption agencies, and asked them a few questions on how to best approach the adopting procedure.

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Chinese Feng Shui Is Basically Common Sense

ChineseLook, I am not saying ALL of Feng Shui is common sense. As one of Chinese’s oldest guide in harmonizing everything with the natural forces, this practice may be subject to a few superstitions and beliefs – same with other beliefs, practices and religion. What I want to send across is that Feng Shui is not all about Qi, positive force, negative force, alignments, and other terms it is usually associated with. Feng Shui is just common sense. Here I’ll discuss the details many Feng Shui things- as well as gaming and online gambling (e.g. in online-casino sites).
I am a half-Chinese and a half-Filipino. My mother is a devoted Catholic while my Chinese father is a practicing Buddhist. Though one may think that this is a little complicated, it is not. I grew up in a house with icons from both religions. My father applied some Feng Shui logic into our house and later on I realized that the system actually works!

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China Elevator Stories – A blog that makes the difference

china elevatorMany people live in China and blog about it. Many feel the need to share their Chinese experience with the world and process their thoughts better in doing so. But here’s a blogger whose point of view differs, because she doesn’t just limit herself to words. Ruth’s China is as a colorful mosaic of illustrations, drawings, pictures and words; a joyful voyage combining art, technology and the one-of-a-kind approach of a very talented young lady, who made China her home. Chinese Tools brings to you China Elevator Stories, one of the most unique blogs about China.

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5 Ways to Motivate Yourself When Chinese Gets Hard

by Logan Murphy

Here’s a list of five ways to motivate yourself to keep learning Chinese when the going gets tough!


1. Find a Chinese girl/guy that you like
This worked like a charm for me, and I’m sure it will for you too! Nothing like a pretty smile to motivate you, I mean, how are you going to make it work with your new crush if you can’t speak their language? Continue reading

My Favorite Apps: Studying Chinese

Mishi 1Technology and language learning are closely knit nowadays. Especially with a language such as Chinese, things like apps, games, online dictionaries, grammars and illustrations can prove to be extremely helpful to learners who are struggling to unlock the language’s gates and discover its magic. Chinese Tools contacted Peter Gokey (Chinese name高岩松) who is currently learning Chinese at Keats School in Kunming. An ardent lover of technology, Peter agreed to share his Chinese learning experience with us and talk to us about the digital tools he has found to be very helpful in the process. Here is what he has to say: “The continual evolution of technology transforms every area of our lives. The development of smart phones, tablets, and the applications (apps) that run on them have revolutionized the way I learn chinese. Here are two such apps that I highly recommend to anyone studying Chinese.”

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Immersion, the best trick to learn Chinese

LTL program (1)Learning Mandarin is more than learning a language it is learning something about an ancient culture that has been developing for thousands of years. Even though Mandarin is the official language of China most people are not aware that it is not spoken in the entire country. The further you go to the south the less you hear spoken Mandarin. In Shanghai the population speaks Shanghaihua, in Hongkong they speak Cantonese and in other southern regions you can hear Jin, Ping and many other languages on the streets.

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A Ninja Wind of Change

jet blackThe catch of this week is an adventure for teenagers and grownups alike! Jet Black and the Ninja Wind is a playful, vivid and adventurous book that promises you a trip to a world of fantasy and legends. Jet Black, the heroine of the book, is a ninja but doesn’t know it. All she knows is that, after her mother’s death, she has to go to her ancestral land, Japan, to protect a well-hidden family treasure. Bounty hunters are sent after her. Her life is in danger and to top all that, she desperately falls in love with the man who’s been sent to kill her. Will she be strong enough to protect the treasure and preserve an ancient culture? Chinese Tools managed to get hold of Leza Lowitz and Shogo Oketani, the authors of Jet Black and the Ninja Wind, and ask them more about this compulsively readable story. Here is what they have to say. Continue reading