Duolingo now offers a course in Mandarin Chinese

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Duolingo now offers a course in Mandarin Chinese

If you’ve constantly wanted to learn the most widely voiced language in the world, now’s your opportunity.  

Starting today, the free of charge language-learning app Duolingo is offering a whole new course: Mandarin Chinese.  

If you don’t speak a word associated with Chinese, never fear: The program first teaches you the basics of titles, numbers, and greetings, before getting into foods, occupations, hobbies, and speaking skills for every occasion.  

If you already know some Chinese, there’s a positioning test that will allow you to skip more than early parts of the course. End up being warned, however , that Duolingo begins with both speaking and reading/writing right from the start. If you’re like me, and can speak several tentative Mandarin but can’t examine or write a word, you start at the beginning.  

The workouts vary in topic and construction, so you won’t get bored, or even too comfortable. In one lesson, I used to be asked to match characters with their pinyin (Romanized Chinese) syllables, translate pinyin syllables back to characters, match voiced Chinese words to their pinyin syllables, and finally translate characters to The english language. As you advance, the pinyin will be phased out, and you graduate from matching figures to translating full phrases plus sentences between English and Chinese language.  

There’s much more to keep track of than there would be in the French or Spanish class, however the course moves slowly, and you can return and repeat any lesson as often as you’d like. Duolingo will also offer practice exercises tailored to your weak points.  

And no matter how frustrating the lesson is, nothing can defeat the feeling of a cute eco-friendly owl congratulating you when you have done something right.  

Image: monica chin/duolingo

Chinese is a tough language to learn, particularly because the writing system and tonal components are incredibly different from anything acquainted to English speakers. But Duolingo has done an admirable job of creating the monumental task accessible plus fun.  

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