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My name is Yuanyuan (pronounced as UN UN by English speakers), I'm from Sichuan, China and a graduate of China West Normal University where I majored in English Education. I have taught English to junior high and primary school students. I have also taught Mandarin Chinese language and cultural lessons to Peace Corps volunteers and foreigners in China. I believe that knowing about the culture of a foreign country helps tremendously when one's learning the language of that country. My skills and practices of teaching both English and Chinese to people helped me figure out an integrated and contrasting teaching method. Also, my experiences of working for translation company translating between English and Chinese helped me achieve fuller understanding of both languages to be able to teach them more sufficiently.
I was born and grew up in China. I majored in English Education in China West Normal University. I have taught English to primary and middle school students in China. I have also given Chinese and cultural lessons to Peace Corps volunteers and foreigners in China in the past 4 years (before I moved to America). I have done English/Chinese subtitles for a Peace Corps documentary and some TV shows. I also worked as a translator translating both English and Chinese materials. Those experiences helped me gain a better understanding and appreciation of both languages, cultures and the ways of how they can be turned into each other.
Learning Chinese is not as hard as people think. In my opinion, there are mainly two ways to learn Chinese: extensive and intensive learning.
Extensive learning is good for people who just want to know enough Chinese for certain serviceable purposes, such as business trips, traveling plans, or just for fun. For this kind of learning, certain basic phrases and expressions will be provided, plus simple grammar introductions. The lessons are easy, fast and concise. Practices will be focused more on speaking and listening, less on reading and writing. Of course, students can always require to learn specific things about Chinese language.
Intensive learning is good for people who want to learn this language for long-term goals and master it. This requires learning Pinyin (Chinese phonetic alphabet), strokes, tones, grammar and very importantly, Chinese culture. This kind of learning will involve more systematic planning and serious practices for listening, speaking, reading and writing. Intensive learning also can be boosted with Chinese culture understanding, which will help students acquaint the whole learning project and make learning experiences more interesting, efficient and enjoyable.
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