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General Chinese

eChineselearning provides a huge number of Chinese resources for Chinese language learners. The materials in this section are designed to teach Chinese to non-native Chinese learners of various skill levels. These basic Chinese language materials are edited by eChineselearning's professional teaching staff. And best of all, they are totally FREE! If you are interested in learning Chinese, the basic Chinese language resources in this section will be of a great use to you!

In the past, we have introduced two of China’s most disgusting foods, stinky tofu “臭豆腐” and preserved eggs “皮蛋”. In case you have forgotten, stinky tofu, or “臭豆腐(chòudòufu),” is a dish that smells awful but is actually quite savory. This fried tofu, crispy on the outside but tender inside, is always served with delicious, thick ...


Chinese pinyin is a phonetic system to help people learn Chinese easier and make sense of it quicker. The alphabet is the key tool for learning Mandarin Chinese as it encompasses every sound in Mandarin Chinese.


Before we introduced one of China’s delicious breakfast duos, 豆浆油条(dòujiāng yóutiáo) or soy milk and fried dough sticks. A breakfast meal for the hearty looking to be filled with a full, warm meal. Yet there is another breakfast option for those who enjoy eating a lighter, healthier breakfast. If this sounds better to you, then traditional ...


Most mornings people don’t have much time before work or school to make breakfast. Its a troublesome problem for many that still want something filling to have in the morning. But, in China, the perfect solution has been found! This simple, yet delicious, breakfast consists of warm soy milk “豆浆(dòujiāng)” accompanied by crispy, deep-fried twisted dough ...


Nowadays, everyone is using the internet for something, whether it be for shopping online or just surfing the web, the internet has become an important tool for daily life. This means in your journey to become fluent in Chinese, it is important to learn some words related to using the internet. This way you can ...


Did you know that by knowing some simple English words you already can speak some popular colloquial Chinese phrases? If you have been studying Chinese for a while some words might immediately jump to mind. What occurs is actually the adoption of particular words from one foreign language into another. You would be surprised how ...


Read the Story:
“五个手指头的对话(Wǔ gè Shǒuzhǐtou de Duìhuà)” The Five Fingers’ Dialogue

Yìtiān wǎnshang, wǔ gè shǒuzhǐtou tǎng zài chuáng shàng liáotiān.
一天     晚上,     五  个   手指头        躺    在    床        上       聊天。
One night, five fingers laid on the bed ...


Every language has colloquial expressions that have a literal meaning that’s different from what the sentence is used for. As a Mandarin learner, you may often hear expressions that confuse you. Usually these expressions are just a part of spoken language or “口语(kǒuyǔ)” and are not found in “书面语(shūmiànyǔ)” or written language as much. Learning ...


One of the hardest parts of learning the Chinese language is understanding the various meanings of the same word, and then knowing how and when to throw them into a conversation. Today we will take a look at a simple, yet versatile phrase: “干吗? (gànmá?)”
First off, let’s break down the phrase character by character. ...


(Click to enlarge image)
Finding a good Chinese tutor is key if you want to learn the Chinese language correctly and in an effective way, but how do you know if your tutor is the right one for you? Use the following checklist as a guide:
1. Customized to Your Needs
Find a proper Mandarin tutor according to ...


In a recent newsletter, we introduced the key Chinese phrases you will need to buy “火车票(huǒchēpiào) train tickets” in China. With all the choices you have when it comes to type and class of travel, it can certainly get a little confusing. Now that you know how to get from one city to another, today ...


One of the best things about traveling in China is the country’s convenient transportation network. China’s cities are well connected by trains, which are generally quick, comfortable, and with regular departures to choose from. To enjoy your trip in China, you must learn some essential phrases, e.g. how to buy train tickets in Chinese, etc. ...


New technology is being developed every day, and the Chinese are always up-to-date on what’s hot, with the newest gadget in hand. People in China are especially obsessed with smartphones. Take a trip on a bus or the subway in any Chinese city and have a look around. Chances are everyone around you has their ...


Recently, a Chinese cat named Luhu was deemed “the most depressed cat in the world” by many netizens, thanks to the permanently gloomy expression on the feline’s face.

Meanwhile, Grumpy Dog, a pooch from America with an annoyed look, went viral on the internet after its photo was posted on Reddit.

Just as animals are capable of ...


In China you will certainly find yourself needing to take a taxi at some point. Compared to many other countries, taxis in China are generally an affordable and convenient way to get where you want to go quickly. So what lingo do we need to master to get around town by taxi? Let’s take a ...


Family plays an important role in every culture, and it is a topic you will certainly cover when learning any new language. As you might guess, there are many terms used to describe relationships in a Chinese family, which can be quite confusing because terms differ depending on the side of the family. So how ...


Today, we’ll teach you how to make Chinese friends! Or, at least the very first step: greetings. You’ll learn how to greet people in Mandarin Chinese, ask them how they are doing, and reply when they ask you. Sit back, listen, and you’ll be able to show off with a few sentences yourself in no ...


Many phrases in spoken Chinese take on completely new meanings when just one or two words are changed. Take the phrase we will learn today for instance: “大不了(dà bù liǎo).” You will find that this versatile phrase is used a lot in daily conversations. Let’s have a look!
1. “大不了(dà bù liǎo)” = At worst
“大不了(dà bù ...


There is a saying in English that goes, “Never trouble trouble till trouble troubles you.” In Chinese, this same phrase can be translated as “麻烦没有来找你, 你就永远不要去找麻烦(Máfan méiyǒu lái zhǎo nǐ, nǐ jiù yóngyuǎn búyào qù zhǎo máfan),” or, in brief, “不要自找麻烦(búyào zì zhǎo máfan).” The moral here is, don’t seek out trouble, and in Chinese ...


In a previous lesson we learned how to address young Chinese women, so how about young Chinese men?
In general, depending on different situations and the age of the person speaking, there are four ways to address young Chinese men:
帅哥(shuàigē)
“帅哥(shuàigē)” literally means “handsome man.” This casual term is usually used to address peers in informal situations. ...


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