From learning Chinese to using Chinese: the importance of reading (out loud)

One of the tools in learning languages that have been underestimated is reading, particularly reading out loud. To tell you the truth, I love reading my Spanish textbooks (I am currently learning Spanish). Reading is of great importance and it has helped me greatly in improve my speaking skills.

Reading is not looking at your books silently. What I mean by reading is to read out loud.

What can reading bring you?

 

1) It will help you to have a good feel for Chinese: many times we can’t explain why we use a particular word, or simply a hunch. Reading can help you reinforce this hunch. You will soon feel the Chinese when you speak.

2) hear your own tones: Chinese is a tone language. Unfortunately to practice tones you need to make some effort. I find reading can particularly help with your tones.

3) fluency: this goes without saying that fluency is needed.

How to read?

1) Make sure you block 10-15 minutes everyday to read: form a habit and make it a rule for yourself. This isn’t difficult and you do not need to read for a long time.

2) Reading loudly: to make it work, you really have to read out loud. At least you should be able to hear your own sound.

3) make a recording: if it’s possible, I also advise you to make a recording of your reading. Bring it to your teacher or any native speaker and ask them to hear it. They can easily point out any mistakes or tone problems you have.

5) pay special attention to words that you’d like to use: learn a word is one thing and be able to use it freely is another. Read a few times of the words that you’d like to change into yours.

6) recite: if you like a particular sentences or paragraphs, recite them! It’ll come out of your month without you noticing it.

What are your thoughts? How do you do your readings? Share below what you think.

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