I was worried that we can't guide Elyssa with her chinese homework when she goes to school. So at the end of last year, when I thought about my 2010 New Years Resolution, I decided that I wanted to learn how to read and write basic Mandarin.
I found an adult chinese learning class near my area. I went there to find out more but was told they didn't have enough students to start a class yet. Anyway, I ventured into Popular Bookstore one day and then thought, hmmm...... mebbe I can just do this myself !!! I can speak basic mandarin so it's not like I'm starting totally from scratch.
So for the past few months, I got myself busy with all these -
My reading materials (yup, pre-school books !!!)
(for chinese characters, it's all about repetition, repetition! I think I've finished about 10 exercise books)
My well-used dictionary.
A very good investment @ only RM19.90! I really like this as it shows stroke sequence and the words are big enough for a beginner like me.
My daily homework (about 10-20 mins)
Start with the pre-school story book. For new characters -
(i) check meaning in dictionary
(ii) if not sure about pronunciation, go to this website to find out.
(iii) learn stroke sequence from dictionary
(iv) write out character over and over again in exercise book.
(v) add character to my "list of new words learnt". (another exercise book)
My personal target was 5 new characters a day with a minimum of 2 characters if I was busy.
Ha hahhh........ with a minimum set like that, yup, my daily norm is .......... TWO characters a day ;)
I know I'm inching forward like a snail with just 2 characters a day when there are tens and thousands of chinese characters out there, but at least I'm making an effort eh?
Surprisingly, I actually enjoy this daily routine. It is satisfying when I come across more and more words that I recognise. And after a stressful day dealing with all sorts of people and expectations at work, it is somehow therapeutic to just write and write the characters in my exercise book.
So I started all these for Elyssa, but somehow along the way, it feels as it's for ME as well :)