British Chef details how she self taught herself Mandarin Chinese in Taiwan.

British Chef Amy Rattinger details why she came to Taiwan and the process she used to self teach herself Mandarin Chinese on the way to starting two restaurants in Taipei.

Listen to find out:

  • What brought her to Taiwan
  • Why she began learning Mandarin Chinese
  • Her initial approach to learning Chinese
  • How she self taught herself Chinese characters
  • Her process for learning new vocabulary
  • Her approach to Chinese tones
  • The benefits to speaking Chinese in Taiwan
  • How she transitioned from teaching English to opening a restaurant
  • Cultural differences between Taiwanese employees and British ones
  • How to get direct feedback from Chinese staff
  • Why your Chinese tutor needs to be direct with you
  • What she would have done differently regarding learning Chinese

Why many language teachers fail at teaching Mandarin Chinese [Podcast Interview]

Watch on youtube

American Jenna Cody details how she learned Mandarin Chinese and Taiwanese, while living in Taiwan and why she feels many teachers and language schools fail at teaching Mandarin Chinese.

Listen to find out:

  • What brought her to Asia
  • How she initially learned Chinese in China
  • How she resumed learning Chinese in Taiwan
  • Why she didn’t like her first language schools
  • Her self study process to learn Chinese
  • The problem with most language teaching systems
  • How her Chinese benefits her in daily life in Taiwan
  • Her current jobs in Taiwan
  • What career advice she has for expats in Taiwan
  • Why she started learning the Taiwanese language
  • The resources she uses to learn Taiwanese
  • How the romanization and tones work in Taiwanese
  • The reaction she gets in public from speaking Taiwanese
  • How Taiwanese people mix Taiwanese and Mandarin
  • What she would have done differently if she were to start learning again
  • What she recommends students look for in a teacher
  • How she practices reading
  • How flashcard systems can be beneficial

Learn Chinese Insights Podcast Episode 048: Ron

Watch on YouTube

In this interview, Ron Hanson from New Zealand details the steps he took to learn Mandarin Chinese to allow him to research topics to write on for his magazine: Listen to find out:

  • What brought him to Taiwan
  • How he first started learning Chinese
  • Why he decided to learn Chinese characters
  • Why he feels learning Chinese characters are important
  • His character learning process at school
  • His process for researching in Chinese
  • His process for learning new vocabulary
  • Why learning Chinese is like learning Shakespeare
  • How he uses the Pleco Chinese dictionary app
  • How he feels about having a western accent when speaking Chinese
  • The benefits he gets from speaking Chinese
  • What he does to progress towards Chinese fluency
  • The trouble with learning Chinese handwriting
  • What he wishes he’d done differently when learning Chinese

Learn Chinese Insights Podcast Episode 047: Anthony

Watch on Youtube

In this podcast episode, Canadian Anthony Van Dyck details the steps he took to self teach himself Mandarin Chinese, which enabled him to branch out from teaching English and climb the corporate ladder all the way to COO of an energy company in Taiwan.

Listen to find out:

  • What brought him to Taiwan
  • What it was like living in Chiayi in the 80s
  • His first words in Mandarin
  • How he learned Bopomofo (zhuyin fuhao)
  • What business culture was like in rural Taiwan
  • Distinguishing between Taiwanese Mandarin and standard Chinese
  • Learning to count in Chinese
  • Learning Chinese from movies
  • Learning Chinese from love songs
  • Making friends with Taiwanese
  • Learning Chinese from the iPhone
  • Learning Chinese on the job
  • How speaking Chinese got him promoted
  • His Chinese phone hotline story
  • How he switched career paths
  • Why CVs aren’t good enough to get a job
  • Raising bilingual kids in Taiwan
  • Education in Taiwan
  • The problem with education in Taiwan
  • Why expats should learn Chinese
  • The benefit of an Master’s degree
  • A useful idiom to learn
  • How to develop your social environment in Taiwan
  • How to learn new idioms

Learn Chinese Insights Podcast Episode 046: Karen

In this episode, I interview Karen Chung, an American who has lived in Taiwan for 40 years.

Watch on YouTube

Listen to find out:

  • What brought her to Taiwan
  • What Taiwan was like in the 70s
  • Why studying in university is not enough to learn Chinese
  • What mistakes she made in Chinese early on
  • Why she began to worry about her English level, more than her Chinese
  • Her experience teaching Chinese at the University of Hawaii
  • The number one mistake foreigners make when learning Chinese
  • The proper way to learn Chinese tones
  • The importance of using proper tones beyond just being understood
  • Her experience learning characters
  • Why she prefers pinyin over zhuyin
  • Common mistakes that foreigners make when learning Chinese
  • What she recommends you do with your teacher / language exchange partner
  • The benefits of being able to speak Chinese at a higher level
  • Her advice on raising kids in Taiwan
  • Her advice on improving English education in Taiwan