How Can We Use Technology to Facilitate Students’ Learning of the Chinese Language
It goes without saying that technology has significantly improved many aspects of our lives. This is no different for language learning. Students can use different tools and digital resources to learn languages more efficiently and effectively.
A language as complex as Chinese requires special attention and effort on the learners’ side, so it’s great to have different tech tools that can help during the process of learning the language. Hence, here’s how you can use technology to facilitate students’ learning of the Chinese language.
#1 Find Numerous Free and Paid Resources
By far the most obvious technology that you can use for learning Chinese is the Internet. This means that you are getting access to numerous free and paid resources just by having a wi-fi connection. Both native speakers and fellow students have been sharing valuable resources for learning Chinese for decades now.
In addition to that, you can install different apps and programs for learning languages that are available both for free and as paid options. All these free resources are extremely valuable for students who can’t afford to pay for courses.
#2 Access Learning Resources Anytime
You not only get access to numerous resources, but you can also access them anytime from anywhere. This means that you could be revising vocabulary, listening to an audiobook in Chinese, or watching movies in Chinese while commuting to work or during breaks throughout the day.
Before, you would have to get your heavy textbook with you if you wanted to be learning something on the go. But today, you can simply download the textbook’s e-book version to your smartphone, tablet, or e-reader and access it whenever you feel like it. It’s both comfortable and eco-friendly.
#3 Use Different Methods for Learning Vocabulary
Different students prefer different methods for memorizing new words and phrases. Indeed, there is no one method that fits absolutely everyone. Luckily, by using technology, you can use all kinds of methods for learning new vocabulary.
For example, an app like Quizlet is perfect for those who like using flashcards to learn words and phrases. Essentially, it is just like regular flashcards but in digital form that you can create and organize yourself.
#4 Check Your Writing with Proofreaders
If you’ve ever written anything in English and wanted to proofread it, you probably know about the seemingly endless number of proofreading tools available both for free and for a price. This is true for other languages as well, including Chinese.
What this means for you as a student is that you can write something in Chinese and then run it through a proofreader to see where you made mistakes. You can also order texts on different topics from professional writers from the writing services reviews site Trust My Paper and then translate them to practice your Chinese. Then, run the translations through a proofreader to check them the same way.
#5 Change the Language Settings
Something as simple as changing the language settings on your devices and social media accounts can make a huge difference for you. Instead of using your devices and social media accounts in your native language, change the settings to Chinese and challenge yourself this way.
Of course, you will likely remember some things already simply due to habit, but it can still be a great way for you to learn new words and phrases and get used to reading Chinese continuously throughout the day.
#6 Instantly Translate Words and Phrases
While Google Translate doesn’t have the best reputation, it is still a decent option for instantly translating words and phrases instead of reaching for a heavy physical dictionary. Besides, there are many other translation tools and apps you can try if you don’t like Google Translate.
The instant translation feature can be particularly useful on social media. For instance, on Twitter, you can translate tweets immediately (though translations are not always correct). Other social media platforms have similar translation options.
#7 Chat with Native Speakers to Improve Speaking
One of the easiest ways to improve your speaking is by directly communicating with native speakers. This is obviously quite difficult to do if you aren’t in China and don’t have any Chinese friends that you could practice with.
Luckily, there are apps that can connect you with native Chinese speakers with whom you can text or talk via video and voice calls. You need to select your native language and the language you are learning (Chinese). The app will then help you find a Chinese person learning your native language with whom you will practice Chinese while they practice your native language with you.
#8 Test Your Chinese Knowledge with Games
Another method for practicing vocabulary and grammar as well as verifying your level of Chinese is through games specially designed for this. Such games can help you identify the gaps in your knowledge of Chinese.
If you want to have an app completely personalized to your needs, you can look for different game builders where you can build one yourself. You can also hire an experienced writer from the custom writing reviews site All Top Reviews to help you design your Chinese learning app or game.
#9 Listen to Audiobooks During Car Rides
If you regularly drive your car (e.g. to get to work), you will find audiobooks helpful for learning Chinese. Some of these are available as CDs while others can be played from your smartphone by connecting it to your audio system by Bluetooth.
Even if you don’t drive a car, you can still make use of audiobooks. Download them to your device and listen to them on the train, bus, or any other transport you use to move around your city or town.
#10 Watch YouTube or Netflix to Learn Chinese
Last but not least, YouTube and Netflix can be quite valuable for learning Chinese. You can watch videos, movies, and shows in Chinese to practice your listening skills and get used to the way words and phrases are pronounced.
In addition to simply watching, you can turn on subtitles in Chinese to see how the words and phrases are written. If your Chinese isn’t too good yet, you can also turn on subtitles in your native language.
At the end of the day, the way you learn Chinese depends on your own learning needs and preferences, but using these techniques will definitely help you master the language faster and in a more engaging and effective way.