An effective way to easily learn Chinese is to find out which learning style fits you best.
Learning Chinese is often a daunting task but if you find the right learning style that works for you, you can utilize that approach to boost your performance and efficiency.
Knowing your learning styles is important when you’re learning a language because it can help you organize your knowledge in a way that makes sense to you. Everyone has a different approach to learning, and one can even have a multitude of styles that work for them.
Here’s a guide to find out which learning style fits you best and the tools that can help you get jump-started on your Chinese learning journey!
Are you an auditory learner?
Auditory learners have the natural ability to learn through speaking and listening. Learning through conversations or talking with your friends is a great way for auditory learners to learn Chinese from scratch. You can also listen to music, podcasts, Chinese movies, audiobooks, radio shows, or even just listen to native speakers speaking in their mother tongue. Here’s some practical tips to improve your Chinese listening skills.
There are many resources out there for auditory learners that will help you build up your vocabulary while learning new words at the same time! Here’s a tool that can help you get started in no time.
Best Chinese-learning tool for auditory learners: Pimsleur Audio Courses
This 30-min audio course centers on improving word retention that is backed by scientific research. This course states that you can speak the language in 30 days with near-native diction! It focuses on back-chaining, which enables you to learn how to pronounce difficult words. This course also focuses on giving small doses of information at a time to prevent the dreaded “information overload.” They also teach the context of each word used, periodically review each vocabulary, and teach students the ability to come up with the right answers. It’s a comprehensive course that offers a 7-day free trial and a subscription package after. Learn more here.
Are you a visual learner?
Visual learners are good at picturing things in their minds. They can remember images and colors, as well as shapes and patterns. This type of learner learns best when using pictures, images, and diagrams. When learning Chinese, you can make use of flashcards, diagrams, and mind maps. Color coordinating notes and making use of visual mnemonics is a good way to supplement this type of learning.
Mnemonics is a technique that helps in memorizing information effectively through the use of visualization and association. Another effective method for visual learners is called spaced repetition, which requires you to review information several times before you fully forget it.
Best hanzi-learning tool for visual learners: Pandanese
Pandanese is a web-based curriculum created by language experts that teaches you the basics of learning Chinese. It’s an easy way to learn Chinese and build vocabulary of up to 6,000 hanzi each year. You will learn through radicals and characters while employing science-based learning methods like the flashcard system, spaced repetition, and mnemonic devices all while enjoying your learning experience! The best part is Pandanese offers a 15-day free trial to get you started on your learning journey. Get started now!
Are you a linguistic learner?
Linguistic learners learn best through reading and writing, it’s one of the most important ways to absorb new words and sentences. Learning Chinese through reading and writing also means that once you get a grasp of the basics of Chinese, it’s easy to move into advanced forms like spoken conversation or essays.
There are plenty of resources to learn to read in Chinese, like the 8 best books to teach yourself Chinese; although writing is not often highlighted. One resource tool we’ve found that focuses on learning Chinese through writing is Skritter.
Best linguistic-learning tool for Chinese: Skritter
Skritter is a web and app-based learning tool that focuses on learning Chinese through writing. You can write Chinese characters directly from your browser and it even helps you with each stroke and corrects your mistakes in real-time! It also uses a smart flashcard system to help you with your progress. Skitter is subscription based but offers a 7-day free trial for you to test the waters.
Are you a kinesthetic learner?
Kinesthetic learners learn best by doing and being engaged. An effective method of learning Chinese is through immersing yourself in Chinese culture. You can take different classes like Chinese dance classes, cooking classes, and even martial arts whilst learning the language through movement and concepts. Calligraphy is also an effective way to learn Chinese through practicing brush strokes and art forms.
For Kinesthetic learners, experience is the best teacher. You can do study abroad programs, cultural exchanges, or travel to Chinese-speaking communities all over the world to get first-hand experience of learning Chinese.
Best kinesthetic-learning tool for Chinese: TEAN – Semester in Shanghai
A good study abroad program is by The Education Abroad Network Semester in Shanghai, which offers the opportunity to learn at a top university in China. You can fully immerse yourself in the culture, learn the language, and integrate with the locals – all while exploring the vibrant city of Shanghai for 4 months! Reach out to them here.
While you’re out there, don’t limit yourself to just Shanghai! Explore the beautiful country of China – Here’s our guide to the 5 must visit spots in China!
Frequently asked questions about learning Chinese
One way to start learning Chinese is to evaluate your learning style and pick a tool that caters to the way you learn best. Use the tools in this article to choose effective tools that support your learning!
Definitely! You just have to take one step at a time. There are a lot of resources available out there to learn Chinese, it can often get overwhelming. Knowing your learning style is a great way to sort out all the tools available for an approach that works best and is suited to your preferences and needs. Learning through your preferred style is a good stepping stone to having a foundation for learning the language, but don’t limit yourself to learning Chinese through only one method. It is best to use these different approaches as a supplement to each other in your learning journey.
Learning Chinese is like learning how to walk. You just have to take one step at a time and then you’ll be running in no time!
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