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Selective Learning in Chinese Words

In the classroom teaching system of teaching overseas students Chinese, the words teaching plays a crucial part. It is the foundation and precondition of learning and understanding the texts. It is also an important measure for students learn Chinese in China to master words and increase their vocabulary.

However, there are so many words in Chinese language for students study in China to learn. Therefore, we should take a selective learning when we studying Chinese words. Firstly, teachers should explain function words in detail but teach the content words generally.

Before we discuss this point, we should know some frequently used function words. Four types will be mentioned, they are the preposition, the adverb, the conjunction and the auxiliary word. All above are popular when students learn Mandarin Chinese.

The preposition is a difficult point in for students to learn in Chinese learning programs. Even though the prepositions in Chinese language are not so many, they can collocate widely with other words. Some can draw forth time like “当”, “在”, “从”, and “离”. Some lead the direction like “向”, “往” and “朝”. Some lead objects like “对”, “跟”, “和”, “比” and “给”, etc.

The second one is the adverb, which positioned before verbs to describe, modify and limit the time, degree, frequency, tone and limits of the verbs. It is a little difficult for students who learn Chinese to understand the adverbs because they are obscure.

Those who learn Mandarin in China should know some differences between the adverbs. For example, “已经”, “正在” and “总是” are all the adverbs to express time but different in meaning. “已经” is to describe the things have happened. “正在” is to indicate the happening things while “总是” is to say the existence of the actions and status in a limited times. After being told the tiny differences between them, students can understand better and have a deep impression.

Some conjunctions are used to connect the words or phrases while some connect the clauses. Here are two examples illustrated to help study Chinese. “我和你”, “老虎和狮子” and “不但我们没去,而且他们也都没去”. When using the conjunctions, we should pay more attention to the relationships between the parts they connect.

The auxiliary words are attached to other words to complete the grammar function like “的”, “地” and “得”. “的” can be used together with nouns, pronouns and adjectives. “地” is with adjectives and adverbs and “得” positioned after the verbs to lead the complements. It would be great help to study Mandarin Chinese after knowing how to use them.

During the process of Chinese language teaching, teachers can teach some words have typical cultural characteristics to increase the vocabulary and to stimulate their interest when introducing Chinese culture. Of course, if interested, students can learn Chinese online free. Here are some typical words “红娘”, “旗袍” and “月老”. Some others have particular meanings in culture like “贫农” and “情人”.

From the respective of the word meaning, words can be classified into antonyms, synonyms and words have more than two meanings. In the one-on-one Chinese learning programs, teachers will tell you more about them. If the words meanings are specific, the words become the content words, if abstract, they are functional words.

If the meanings of two words are the opposite, the two words are antonyms. Since they are the opposite, when you affirm one word, the other will be negated. But there are some words have the relative third meaning between two meanings. For example, between “黑” and “白”, we have “灰白” or “浅黑”.

However, if the words have similar meanings, we call them synonyms. The point of teaching synonyms is to distinguish the usage on the foundation of telling apart the meaning differences. And we can distinguish words according to the parts of speech. For example, we can tell apart nouns in size or color and distinguish adjectives in objects or grammar functions.

All in all, the most important thing in words teaching is to help students to take a selective learning by choosing words appropriately to teach.

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