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The Reason Why Mike Is Late

May. 16, 2012

Study the vocabulary then read through the conversation. Why is Mike late?


迟到 (chídào) adj. late


路过 (lùguò) v. to pass by


路标 (lùbiāo) n. signpost/road sign



               Mike, nǐ zěnme měitiān shàngxué dōu chídào?
Teacher: Mike,你 怎么    每天     上学        都    迟到?


               Mike, why are you late every day?

               Wǒ měicì lùguò guǎijiǎo, dōu kànjiàn yíge lùbiāo shàngmian xiězhe: 
Mike: 我   每次    路过   拐角,  都      看见    一个 路标     上面         写着:
               qiánfāng xuéxiào, qǐng màn xíng.            
                前方          学校,  请     慢   行。


               Every day when I pass by the corner, I see a signpost that says: School ahead! Slow down!


On the road, there are many signs warning drivers and the pedestrians, such as, “前方施工,车辆慢行 (Qián fāng shīgōng, chēliàng màn xíng) Construction ahead! Slow down!” or “前方拐弯,小心慢行 (Qián fāng guǎiwān, xiǎoxīn màn xíng) Corner ahead! Slow down!” Signs like these are found all over China and might intimidate you by having many words, so let’s take a closer look at the most common words you’re likely to see.

More Vocabulary:

慢行 (màn xíng) v. to slow down


小心 (xiǎoxīn) adj. attention/careful


前方 (qiánfāng) n. ahead


注意 (zhùyì) v. to look out


公共 (gōnggòng) adj. public


禁止 (jìnzhǐ) v. to prohibit


These are the most important words you’ll need for understanding signs in China. Take a look below at these examples.


小心地滑 (xiǎoxīn dì huá) Slippery Floor!


小心梯级 (xiǎoxīn tī jí) Mind the Step!


公共厕所 (gōnggòng cèsuǒ) Public Toilets


禁止入内 (jìnzhǐ rùnèi) Do Not Enter!


There you have it. Signs aren’t that hard after all! As you go through your day, you can think about the signs you see and how to say them in Chinese.

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