Chinese is one of the most popular languages in the world with more than a billion speakers. If you have been to a Chinese speaking country, then you might also be aware of the common misconception of Chinese as one of the hardest languages to learn. Non-native Chinese speakers will also tell you how hard it is to learn the language. However, picking up Chinese is not as hard as most people would try to make you believe. Many sign up for chinese language courses in singapore to help them on this journey.
Why is Chinese Deemed Hard to Learn?
Learning Chinese is drastically different from French or Spanish, especially if you have a background in Latin languages. This is because Chinese uses characters that appear complicated and indecipherable by just looking at them. English does not use these characters, making it challenging for anyone to comprehend without studying them. Chinese is also a tonal language and learning the tones may be a little challenging at first.
Every language has its unique features which make learning it a little harder initially. However, this gets better with time, depending on your attitude and motivation. Chinese itself has its own set of defining characteristics that can be easy to grasp if you approach them with the right enthusiasm and attitude. Below are some reasons that are going to change your perception of learning Chinese.
You will find that Chinese has one of the most interesting and simple grammatical structures of any language. You will be amazed by how much you can get away with while learning Chinese since you do not have to change most of the words. This means that you will be able to comfortably construct sentences a few months after learning the language. The verbs remain the same in all tenses while nouns do not change in their plural form. Chinese does not make a distinction between the genders. Do not shy away from speaking the language since your attempts will be mostly met with encouragement from most Singaporeans.
Over 95% of the characters you find in most newspapers and journals consists of the 2000 most common Chinese words. Therefore, it will be easier for you to read and write if you are familiar with these commonly used characters. Learning Chinese words will be slow initially, but the learning process becomes easier after a short time since most Chinese words are built on a few basic words. In fact, you require knowledge of only 5000 words to enrol in a Chinese university as opposed to the 20,000 words needed in English speaking universities.
- Chinese Tones
Using tones in Chinese will be entirely new to you if English is your native language. This is the only complicated part of learning Chinese, but you will get better with time. Chinese only has four tones and a slight stumble while speaking can mean a very different thing. For example, you can quickly change a statement into a question by using the wrong tone. However, it is not hard to learn how to use these tones.
Most people will be intimidated by the look of Chinese characters, but they are not as hard as you may think. There are thousands of characters, but you do not have to learn them from the beginning. You may start by converting the characters a Roman alphabetical form known as pinyin to make them readable. Pinyin is easier to understand compared to the characters since it consists of 400 Chinese syllables. However, you may be required to learn the characters to have a good grasp of Chinese language.
Learning Chinese language is not as hard as you may think. It may be overwhelming at first, but it gets easier the moment you overcome all the fears and immerse yourself in learning the vocabulary, characters and grammar.