ERIC Number: ED382001
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Oct-21
Teaching Chinese as a Second Language: Some Practical Methods.
Shen, Yin-Shyan Irene
Classroom techniques for teaching Chinese to students in the United States are presented for four areas of instruction: pronunciation; writing; grammar; and culture. A discussion of Chinese phonology offers comparisons with English phonetic patterns and articulation, and advises emphasizing pronunciation of individual syllables. It is also recommended that students be taught the four basic tones before the fifth is introduced, and that teachers not introduce suprasegmentals (contour, pitch) until students can perform four tones in sentences without difficulty. A parallel is drawn between the Chinese ideograph system and the English alphabet system, and it is suggested that characters are best introduced at the same time as the corresponding vocabulary. A method of character de-construction and re-construction is recommended for compound characters, with some attention given to cultural connotations and interconnected meanings of both character elements and compounds. When grammar is taught, emphasis on word choice over grammatical structure is advised. Finally, teachers are encouraged to incorporate cultural factors into language instruction from the beginning. Several games useful in Chinese instruction are noted. A brief bibliography is included. (MSE)
Descriptors: Articulation (Speech), Chinese, Class Activities, Classroom Techniques, Contrastive Linguistics, Cultural Awareness, Cultural Education, Games, Grammar, Higher Education, Ideography, Intonation, Phonetics, Pronunciation Instruction, Second Language Instruction, Second Language Learning, Sociocultural Patterns, Suprasegmentals, Tone Languages, Writing Instruction
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mid-Atlantic Association for Asian Studies (19th, New Jersey, October 1990).