Learning Chinese Through Reading: Chinese Books for Non-Chinese Children

As the world celebrates World Book Day, it’s an excellent time to encourage your children to read some books. For non-Chinese children interested in learning Chinese, reading Chinese books can be a fun and engaging way to learn new words and phrases. It can also help them understand the culture of China better by introducing them to stories from Chinese authors. With various genres available, there is something for every age group and interest level. Reading Chinese books can be a great way for your child to improve their language skills while having fun.
Today, let’s see what kind of bilingual books eChineseLearning recommends for non-Chinese children to read:

No.1 First Words-Mandarin by Lonely Planet Kids

The book is designed to help young children learn their first Chinese words and phrases in a fun and engaging way. Featuring colorful illustrations and easy-to-read text, it introduces children to basic Chinese vocabulary related to daily life, such as food, animals, family members, and objects. The book also includes pinyin, the phonetic system used to write Chinese words using Roman letters, to help children learn pronunciation. In addition to vocabulary words, First Chinese Words also includes helpful cultural notes that explain concepts such as the importance of family and the symbolism of Chinese dragons. It is a great book for young children who are interested in learning Chinese or who want to expand their knowledge of different cultures.

No.2 My First Book of Chinese Words: An ABC Rhyming Book by Faye-Lynn Wu

This book teaches Chinese vocabulary through a series of nursery rhymes that are easy for young children to remember. The book features colorful illustrations and easy-to-read text, and it introduces children to Chinese vocabulary related to everyday life, such as animals, food, and family members. Each page features a different Chinese character along with its pinyin pronunciation and English translation, as well as a rhyming description of the object or concept depicted in the illustration. The rhyming format and colorful illustrations make the book a delightful read for young children, and the inclusion of cultural notes helps to broaden their understanding of Chinese culture and traditions.

No.3 Ni Hao, Kai-Lan: Happy Chinese New Year, Kai-Lan! by Lauryn Silverhardt

The book is recommended for children ages 4-8. Based on the popular animated series “Ni Hao, Kai-Lan,” this book, which follows the adventures of a young Chinese-American girl named Kai-Lan and her animal friends as they explore Chinese culture and language. The book introduces children to Chinese New Year traditions such as making dumplings, giving red envelopes filled with money, and watching lion dances. Throughout the story, Chinese vocabulary words and phrases are included with English translations, making it a great resource for non-Chinese children learning Chinese. With colorful illustrations and relatable characters, it is a delightful read for children and parents alike.

No.4 Little Tadpoles Search for Their Mother by Yingying Yang

This book tells the story of a group of little tadpoles who set out on a journey to find their mother. Through the simple yet engaging storyline, children will be introduced to basic Chinese vocabulary and phrases. The use of repetition and context clues also makes it easy for young readers to pick up new words and phrases, while the adorable illustrations bring the story to life and keep children engaged. The book’s themes of family, friendship, and perseverance are universal, making it an enjoyable read for all children, making this book an excellent book for kids learning Chinese.
All of these books are great resources for non-Chinese children who are interested in learning Chinese. They provide a fun and engaging way to learn basic vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation, and can help children build a strong foundation for language learning. They also offer activities that make learning enjoyable and interactive. Whether your child is starting to learn Chinese or is looking to improve their skills, these bilingual books are a great place to start.

You May Want to Learn More:

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