How To Maintain The Chinese Language Skills You’ve Learned
First of all, congratulations! It takes hard work and dedication to pick up a foreign language. Therefore, it is vital that you maintain the Chinese language skills you have learnt so that your efforts will not go to waste.
Like riding a bicycle, once you have learnt a new language and understand it, you are unlikely to forget about it. However, constant practice and usage are required to improve your vocabulary and familiarity outside of the classroom. If you are having trouble maintaining what you have learned, allow us to share three practical tips with you to help you shake off your rust and refresh your language skills.
1. Read newspapers and books
It is crucial to keep yourself immersed in the new language you have picked up. Your language skills will inevitably get rusty the less you use them. Suppose you do not have someone to practice with. In that case, reading a newspaper or a book in Chinese is an excellent alternative, and you can even improve your vocabulary skills.
The news industry as a whole is transitioning to online platforms to publish their news. There are now vast resources at one’s fingertips, and you can easily find a Chinese newspaper article with a quick Google search.
In addition to reading the news, you can also search for recommended Chinese texts to read. Not only are you practising your language skills by reading these classic works of literature, but you are also learning more about another culture.
2. Look for a study buddy
It can be beneficial for you to practice with another person, especially if he/she is also trying to learn the Chinese language. If you are currently enrolled in a language class, you can consider practising with your peers. It does not have to be a study session either. Everyone can hang out at a relaxing café and practice conversing in Chinese.
If you are self-taught, you can consider teaching an interested friend or relative. As a non-native Chinese speaker, you know how hard it is to learn the language, making you the ideal teacher. You’ve already been down this path before, so you are better equipped to impart your knowledge. You may also discover some new things about the language that you were not familiar with before.
3. Enrol in a refresher course
It is easy to make rudimentary mistakes when learning a new language, especially when you are self-taught. Enrolling in an online Mandarin course is an excellent way to familiarise yourself with the language again. These courses are taught by qualified instructors with years of experience. Therefore, they are better-equipped to point out your mistakes and the areas you can improve.
Learning does not stop, even after you have completed your language course. It is essential you continue to read, speak, and write in your new language outside the classroom. The less you utilise your Chinese language skills, the rustier you get. We recommend that you engage in regular activities concerning your second language so that you can keep your knowledge fresh.