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How to Learn Mandarin Chinese

Mandarin Chinese learning service is one of Tannet's special offers for China expats. Begin your study of Mandarin Chinese with the four tones. These are the cornerstones to good pronunciation, and once you have mastered them, everything else will fall in place.

There are four Mandarin tones - high and level; rising; falling and rising; and falling. A syllable takes its meaning from both the sound and tone. For example, the syllable "ma" can mean "horse," "mother," "scold," or "hemp" depending on which tone is used.

The Four Mandarin Tones
Mandarin Chinese is a tonal language. The way a word or syllable is pronounced changes its meaning. Mastery of the four Mandarin tones is the essential first step to learning this language.

The four tones in Mandarin are:
1) high level – first tone
2) rising – second tone
3) falling rising – third tone
4) falling – fourth tone

Mandarin Pronunciation Guide
There are 37 unique sounds in Mandarin Chinese - 21 consonants and 16 vowels. This chart has audio files of all 37 sounds along with their Pinyin spellings.

Pinyin Romanization
Pinyin is a way to write Chinese using the Roman (Western) alphabet. It is the most common of many forms of Romanization, and is used in most teaching materials.

Pinyin allows the student of Mandarin to read and write Chinese without using Chinese characters. This allows students to concentrate on spoken Mandarin before tackling the formidable task of learning Chinese characters.

Essential Vocabulary
1) Begin your study of Mandarin Chinese with these essential vocabulary lessons.
2) Mandarin Pronouns
3) Mandarin Numbers
4) Mandarin Greetings
5) Telling the Time
6) The Mandarin Calendar
7) Saying Goodbye
8) Mandarin Colors
9) Mandarin Directions
10) Mandarin Geography
11) Mandarin Nationalities

Expanding Your Vocabulary
As you progress in your mastery of Mandarin, you will need to learn more vocabulary. These lessons prepare you for particular situations.
1) Food Vocabulary
2) Restaurant Vocabulary
3) Hotel Vocabulary
4) Shopping Vocabulary
5) Shopping for Clothes
6) Banking Vocabulary
7) Using the Phone
8) Where Do You Live?

Mandarin Grammar
Mandarin grammar is very different from English and other Western languages. Learning how to think in Mandarin will help you become a fluent speaker.
1) Mandarin Sentence Structure
2) Mandarin Negatives
3) Mandarin Questions
4) Mandarin Adjectives
5) Mandarin Measure Words
6) Mandarin Past Tense

Reading and Writing Chinese Characters
The Chinese writing system is the hardest part of learning Mandarin. You must learn about 2,000 Chinese characters to read a newspaper. Here are some resources to get you started.
1) Introduction to Chinese Characters
2) Beginning to Read Chinese Characters
3) Using Pinyin to Write Chinese Characters
4) Write Chinese Characters Using Windows XP

Contact Us
If you have further queries, don’t hesitate to contact Tannet anytime, anywhere by simply visiting Tannet’s website or, or calling Hong Kong hotline at 852-27826888 or China hotline at 86-755-82143422 or 86-755-82143181 or emailing to


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