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Basic Rules for Writing Chinese Characters

In the mobile era, people are now busy with typing instead of handwriting. It might be good news for Mandarin-Chinese learners.

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Chinese Song Happy Birthday

I will teach you this simple but beautiful song: happy birthday to you(祝你生日快乐)(zhu4 ni3 sheng1 ri4 kuai4 le4) in Mandarin-Chinese.

Next time, you can sing this beautiful song in both English and Mandarin-Chinese at your family or friend’s birthday party.

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Chinese Children’s Song: Two Tigers

“Two Tigers” (两只老虎) (liang3 zhi1 lao3 hu3) is one of my favorite songs when I was little.

In Chinese culture, tiger is regarded as the king of animals. We believe in a tiger has a power.

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How to Pronounce Mandarin-Chinese Tones

Mandarin-Chinese is a tonal language. Tones are more like music notes, which guide you on how to pronounce each character. In this sense, speaking Mandarin-Chinese is more like singing.

It sounds fun but might be confusing to English speakers who are never exposed to tonal languages. However, if you know the trick, you will find it is not difficult at all.

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Chinese Children Song: Number Song

We will learn a number song. Below is the lyric in Mandarin Chinese. Take a look to see if you know the number.

Do you know how to count eleven? Easy! 十一. Twelve? 十二. Thirteen? 十三. Fourteen? 十四.  Fifteen? 十五. Twenty? 二十. Twenty one? 二十一. Twenty two? 二十二. Thirty? 三十. Forty? 四十. Fifty? 五十. One hundred? 一百 (yi4 bai3). One thousand? 一千 (yi4 qian1).

As we know, in English culture, some numbers are not welcomed. For example, number 13.

In Chinese culture, 4 is not a good number. Why? 4  (si4) pronounces similar as 死 (si3) (death), so Chinese people don’t like it.

However, many of us like the number 8. Why? In Cantonese, 8 (ba1) sounds similar as 发 (fa1) that has a meaning of “getting rich”, later Mandarin speakers also adopted this idea.

Except 8, we also like number 6, and we believe 6 could brings us good luck.

9 is a good number too with a meaning of “long lasting”. Also, 9 is the biggest digit number and we believe 9 has the power.

2 is good number. It means double. 1 is a good number, it means number one.

Some times we play around the number because of the pronunciation.

For example, one day my friend received a big bunch of roses from her boyfriend with 57 roses. 57 (wu3 qi1) sounds like: 我妻 (wo3 qi1) that means: my wife.

By the way, it is very important to know the cultural meaning about Chinese numbers if you do business with Chinese people.

For more information about the meaning of numbers in Chinese culture, please check out the link on Wiki: Numbers in Chinese Culture.