Cars buzz by. Crowds of people push through. Buses cut off pedestrians as they try to cross the street. Hello Shanghai! You have just arrived in China’s largest and wealthiest city. This eastern port city is beautiful, bustling and crowded with a population of over 20 million people. It feels like you’ve entered another world where anything can happen and everything is possible… with one exception: hailing a cab. Read More
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If you’ve been learning Mandarin for a while, then you probably know a thing or two about KTV. You probably know that KTV stands for Karaoke Television and is popular not just in China but in many countries across Asia. You may also know it differs vastly from Western-style karaoke where you are typically invited onstage to sing your favorite songs in front of an audience of strangers. Does that sound intimidating? Well lay your worries to rest: KTV is not designed to test your inner stage-fright limits. Instead, it involves booking your own private room with your best friends or colleagues, and singing to your heart’s content for as long as you desire (with some booze involved, if that’s your thing) whether it’s just for one hour or an all night-long marathon session.
More often than not, Mandarin learners who do not feel confident in their language or singing ability tend to decline offers to go to KTV. By doing so, you are shutting yourself out of a culturally important (and fun!) activity and an excellent opportunity to improve their Mandarin language skills. But have no fear: as the ever popular Taiwanese group May Day （五月天） famously sang “Wǒ bù yuàn ràng nǐ yīgè rén｜我不愿让你一个人” | I won’t leave you on your own any longer when it comes to KTV. Read more for the 3 things you need to know to optimize your next KTV experience. Read More
Language learning is a dynamic process: it isn’t all about listening to a podcast or endlessly writing characters; it is also about finding the confidence to converse with native speakers. Finding a native speaker to practice Mandarin with can be a struggle. This can be quite discouraging when all you want to do is practice the language that you are working so hard to learn! Never fear: thanks to modern technology, you now have HelloTalk to add to your language learning arsenal.
HelloTalk meets at the crossroads of a instant messaging mobile app and a passionate language learning community. It’s a free app, available on iOS and Android, that instantly connects you with like-minded people who want to learn another language. Read more for our in-depth review of the app, as well as a special download link! Read More
For those who don’t know — a Reddit AMA is an open “Question and Answer” session that takes place on Reddit (AMA=Ask Me Anything). Two weeks ago, we opened up our laptops and held our own AMA on the Chinese Language subreddit. The questions ranged from “How does one improve listening skills?” to “How do you pronounce Gwilym?” It was a great opportunity for us to directly communicate with the Chinese language learning community and we plan to continue these AMA sessions monthly… subscribe to our Facebook Events to get notifications on when a session is coming up!
In the meantime, read more for our six favorite questions from the session with extended answers for this blog! Also, don’t miss the exclusive Promo Code for a free month of our Annual Premium Subscription on ChinesePod at the end of the post. Read More