Is Chinese Really A Language? Here’s What You Should Know
Did you know that there are as many as 302 spoken languages in China? Although we frequently refer to Putonghua or Mandarin as simply Chinese, it can be misleading to some people, as they use Chinese to refer to all the various tongues that originated in China.
If this is your first time hearing of this, or you simply want to know more about the languages of China, read on to find out more!
What language do Chinese people use?
Chinese is not just a singular language. Instead, it is an umbrella term used to describe multiple languages and dialects. This includes Hakka, Cantonese, and Mandarin, as well as hundreds more dialects used in China. However, when you pick up a Chinese course, you are not trying to learn all of them.
Most people who are interested in trying to learn the Chinese language will often only learn Mandarin. This is because it is the national language of China, and an official language of Taiwan and Singapore. Additionally, Mandarin has the most amount of speakers around the world, with estimates being a billion Mandarin speakers.
In addition, despite having more than 300 dialects, every school in China teaches its students Mandarin. Thus, Mandarin is the language of choice in China. Although certain regions speak Mandarin “better” as compared to others, and there are certain areas that don’t use Mandarin at all or use it sparingly, learning Mandarin is vital. If you are planning on going to or working in China, it is best to enrol in Mandarin lessons so that you can pick up the language before travelling.
What are the ways to learn Chinese?
There are many ways to learn Chinese. One way is to enrol in an online Chinese course in Singapore! There are multiple learning platforms available online that can immerse you in the Chinese language. Some even go as far as to offer personalised and private language-learning sessions. However, one advantage of an online course is being able to communicate and learn with other native speakers online.
There are many communities dedicated to helping individuals that are interested in learning Chinese, often for free. Even if it is only for a few minutes every day, it always helps to regularly practice the language that you are trying to learn. This is especially true for learning Chinese, which can be tricky for non-native speakers. In particular, the different tones and pronunciations is something that a lot of learners struggle with. However, if you have someone to practice with, you can go further with your learning of Chinese.
There is no single best way to learn Chinese. Some people learn better on their own, while others learn better through instruction. Some may also prefer to learn in a classroom-type setting. It is essential to try and explore the different ways of learning Chinese rather than sticking to one learning method.
Learning a new language like Chinese is not just good for your career, but it is also good for your personal development. Learning a new language also has many cognitive benefits too, such as delaying the progression of dementia, and sharpening your brain functions.