What's a Good System for Learning a New Chinese Word Daily?


Quick Answer

The "Integrated Chinese" textbook and the Anki flash card and Line Dictionary apps are valuable resources for learning new Chinese words. Reading, writing and listening are a must to learn and remember Chinese characters and their associated pronunciations.

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Full Answer

"Integrated Chinese: Simplified Characters Textbook, Level 1, Part 1" is an entry-level textbook. The associated listening CDs must be purchased separately. Moving through the textbook with the supplementary CDs at a slow pace is an ideal way for beginners to start to learn Chinese words. Repetition is key to remembering how to read and write Chinese words. Many words and characters may look the same but have a slight difference, which alters the meaning entirely.

Another way to learn Chinese words daily is Line Dictionary, an online website and iPhone and Android app. Each day, Line Dictionary features new expressions, quotes and proverbs. The website also has a Word Card feature that lets users save words for studying.

Anki, a flash card program and iPhone app, is a spaced repetition system. Remembered flash cards get spaced out, creating a longer time until review, while forgotten flash cards come up for review more frequently until they are remembered. Spaced repetition is designed to let users study hard-to-remember items while keeping the easy ones away. Anki must be used daily to get the full effect of the spaced repetition system.

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