iLearn Chinese is an iPhone/iPad application that introduces Chinese characters to non-native speakers or young kids in a fun and intuitive way: to understand their origins as pictures of the objects they represent. This application runs on both iPhone and iPad and we're going to give a mini tutorial here.
But why bother to learn Chinese in the first place? For one thing, there are more than 1 billion people who speak and write Chinese, that's one in every 5 people in the world. For another, Chinese economy has been developing fast so knowing this language may land you a good business or job opportunity in the future. You just never know. Please check these links for some sample reports:
Now let's come back to our program, iLearnChinese. New learners need to bear in mind that Chinese is a very different language from western ones. First of all, the characters don't represent pronunciation. Instead, the oldest characters were all pictures of the objects they represent. For example, the Chinese character for eye was originally a drawing of an eye. Over the history its strokes have been straightened up but you can still see the traces of its original shape.
An average Chinese must master about 3000 characters to read and communicate effectively. It is a daunting task to remember and to write these many characters, especially when you think these characters don't make any sense to you. But with this application you'll find that learning Chinese is not that tedious but can actually be fun. We'll only cover a few hundred characters in this application, but these characters are either the building blocks of more complex characters or are typical examples of compound character formation.
Once you understand how Chinese characters are formed, you'll not be intimidated by its seemingly complex strokes. If you have used this program, please rate or write a review about it in the App Store, and/or drop a comment or suggestion here in the Contact Us page!
A Tom came from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and has been living, teaching and studying in China for over a year. by
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