Have you been spending a great deal of your time learning how to perfectly recall and write Chinese characters? Maybe you should not be. Here is an article about reasons why you should only learn how to recognize and read the Chinese characters-not write.
For any Chinese language student, the task may seem daunting at first. In addition to having to learn an entirely new language, you have to learn a grammar that is entirely different than English language grammar. To top it off, you also have to learn Chinese characters- one for every word in the Chinese language. Good news: You do not have to learn how to write all of those characters, just read them.
Why You Do Not Need to Write Chinese Characters- Ever
Think carefully: When was the last time you wrote something by hand? In this day and age, many people converse using computers. This is good news for any Chinese language learner. If you want to learn Chinese, make sure to focus on the pinyin for the characters. Then, all you need to do is open up Microsoft pinyin and type the way the word sounds and the character will pop up. Rather than repetitively write each character over and over so that you can recall it, save time and use a computer. When you are traveling you will seldom need to write anything out other than your name, learning how to write characters would be a waste of your time.
Learning to Recognize Chinese Characters
So there is no use in learning how to write Chinese characters perfectly, but you still ought to learn how to recognize and read them. In addition to needing them for in class assignments, you will also need to be able to read menus while you are traveling, price tags, road signs, nutritional information and street signs. Being able to recognize the characters will make your life much easier in addition to impressing any Chinese person that you meet.
Tips on Learning to Recognize Chinese Characters
The most obvious method for learning to recognize Chinese characters is to use a set of flashcards and run through them once or twice a day. Another method that worked very well for me was to listen to a CD read a story while I followed along in my book. This also greatly helped me to improve my pronunciation in Chinese. Another idea is to try learning the stories behind the characters. If you go to Amazon you can find several books on the subject, one of them is titled Chinese Characters for Beginners. If you just want to see how the parts of a character are made up of a story, try checking out one of the articles listed below. The one on the Chinese word for soldier goes into detail about how the character came into being over time.
Learning to recognize Chinese characters can greatly benefit your Chinese language training. If you are lucky, you have a teacher who allows you to type out your answers and essays. If this is so, you just saved your self hundreds of hours of misspent time. In the modern era, few people hand write things and even some Chinese people have difficulty remembering all of the characters and have to resort to using a computer. Learning alternative ways around writing Chinese characters can help you to save time.