Hacking Chinese

A better way of learning Mandarin

Articles tagged with ‘Chinese characters’

  1. Outlier Chinese Character Masterclass review: Understand more, learn faster, remember longer

    Mastering Chinese characters, whether you find them enchantingly beautiful or overwhelmingly complex, is essential for literacy in Chinese. Outlier Linguistics will help you understand how the Chinese writing system works, making it easier to learn!

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  2. Why flashcards are terrible for learning Chinese

    Flashcards are often viewed as a silver bullet, promising swift mastery of characters, words and more, but relying on flashcards too much has serious drawbacks, and if you’re not careful, they can hinder more than they help.

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  3. Chinese vocabulary challenge, June 2024

    It’s time for a vocabulary challenge! It starts on June 10th, so enrol, set your goal and learn as many characters and words as you can before the end of the month. This challenge is sponsored by Skritter, so there are also prizes on the line! This article contains more information about the challenge, some important things to keep in mind as well as some advice about learning Chinese characters and words.

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  4. Student Q&A, December 2023: How many words to learn, if it’s good to learn radicals, and whether to learn simplified or traditional characters

    How many words is reasonable to learn in a day? Will focusing on radicals make learning characters easier? And should you learn simplified or traditional characters, or maybe both?

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  5. Shapeshifting Chinese characters

    Most Chinese character components are well-behaved; they look the same in different compounds and aren’t hard to recognise. Some components are sneaky, though; they change appearance depending on context! Let’s have a closer look at these shapeshifting characters. 

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  6. Kickstart your learning with the Skritter Character Course

    What’s the best way to learn Chinese characters as a beginner? The Skritter character course is my best attempt at answering that question.

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  7. Hacking Chinese Podcast two-year anniversary Q&A

    This is a Q&A to mark the second anniversary of the Hacking Chinese Podcast! How do you stop translating in your head? Is it worthwhile to study a Pinyin chart? And how do you learn traditional characters after learning simplified?

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  8. Do you have to learn to write Chinese characters by hand?

    Chinese characters are beautiful, but they take a long time to learn, especially if you want to be able to write by hand. But do you actually need handwriting? When might you be required to write by hand? And are there any other benefits with handwriting that might make it all worthwhile?

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  9. The building blocks of Chinese, part 5: Making sense of Chinese words

    How many characters do you need to know to be able to read Chinese? The truth is that characters only provide a foundation, so regardless of how many you know, you won’t be able to read much unless you also know many words.

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  10. Why spaced repetition software is uniquely well suited to learning Chinese characters

    While spaced repetition software can be very useful, it also has some serious drawbacks. Fortunately, most of them don’t apply to learning to write Chinese characters!

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