Let’s be honest. Back to twenty years ago, no people asked this question. Why? Because few people were interested in learning Mandarin Chinese.
However, in the past ten years, especially, recently, more and more people start to ask this question: Why learn Mandarin Chinese?
Some people argue that it is unnecessary to learn Chinese based on four reasons.
1, English is the universal language these days. Even Chinese people are learning English. So English speakers needn’t learn Chinese.
2, The popularity of Mandarin Chinese will be short lived, so it is unworthy to learn.
Back to 80s, many people studied Japanese and found out Japanese language skill was not that important when Japan suffered economic recession.
3, With assistance of technology such as Google translation, people can communicate without learning Mandarin Chinese.
4, Chinese is a difficult language to learn. Why waste time on learning it.
However, people with Yes answer have their solid reasons.
1, Mandarin Chinese speaking countries and areas, especially China is playing a very important role in today’s global market. Learning Mandarin Chinese will provide more business and professional opportunities.
2, With its huge population and market potentials, China will keep its economic power for a long time. It is worthy to invest time learning Mandarin Chinese.
3, Technology assistance like Google translation can’t take the place of learning Mandarin Chinese. Google translation has its limits.
Google translation has many mistakes. Google translation sounds like machine talking, it is not real effective human-like communication.
Also, people can’t get cultural sense and background knowledge based on Google translation.
4, Even many Chinese people learn English, however many of them can’t communicate in English effectively, let alone there are a hug population of Chinese people knowing few English.
5, Chinese is not a difficult language as people thought. Chinese grammar is very simple. You just need learn about 3000 mostly used characters, you could handle daily life without difficulty.
In the past, Chinese writing needs a lot of practice. However, with typing on screen nowadays, Chinese writing is not necessary if you know how to type Pinyin.
If you ask me this question: Why you wish your child learn Mandarin Chinese? I have my own reasons.
1, I hope my child can communicate with my family back in China.
My parent, siblings and many other relatives don’t know English. If my child doesn’t learn Chinese, he will have no chance to communicate with other family members.
2, I want my child feels comfortable with his background.
If my child learned Mandarin Chinese, it will be easier for him to accept and appreciate his difference, he will have an easier life in a diverse country as a minority.
By learning Mandarin Chinese, my child will be proud of his bicultural identity rather than struggling all the time.
3, I believe in the power of learning a second language.
Learning a second language helps my child become a more open minded person.
Because of the Internet and convenient transportation, my child will be more likely to grow up in a more diverse global society.
I wish my child will be mindset ready for a more diverse society by learning a second language, especially his parents’ naive language, Mandarin Chinese.
4, Learning Mandarin Chinese will bring my child more potential opportunities.
China is a big country. China has a huge population. China is developing quickly.
Many people working on high profile industries saw the potential. That is why they push their kids learn Mandarin Chinese.
I see the potential too.
Take a look at the list of 100 most popular websites worldwild on Wiki, China has 15 websites on the list.
I believe, there will be more websites from China on the list in the coming future if Chinese people from rural areas know how to surf Internet.
Pay attention to the amazon.com traffic data on alexa.com, the third biggest traffic is from China.
Considering the fact that amazon.com is an English website, amazon has a Chinese version website and English is not China’s official language, this data is surprising.
Pay attention to business news. Read this one from Wall Street Journal: Facebook Woos Chinese Advertisers. No wonder why CEO Mark Zuckerberg spends time learning Chinese.
So what is your reason to learn Mandarin Chinese or have your child learn Mandarin Chinese?
It will be nice to hear from you. Enjoy your reading.