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While we initially have been teaching you by translating everything into English, at some point it will be necessary to start thinking in Chinese. In order to develop fluency, you don’t have time to translate everything you hear in Chinese to English before your brain will process it. The videos are meant to help in this area by associating words and phrases with concrete images you can visualize rather than trying to remember the English equivalent. You may have noticed that in level 3, we have stopped identifying the individual tones of new vocabulary. This is done on purpose to get you to listen to the sound and determine on your own what it sounds like, rather than thinking about the tone equivalent. We will be using more such approaches in this and future levels to get you more into Chinese mode, in order to improve your fluency.

When learning Chinese (or any language for that matter) you will notice that there are some words or phrases that you can never remember, no matter how many times you come across them. Each time, you may find yourself looking up the meaning even though you have heard it so many times before. Yet there are other words or phrases that you may only come across once that inexplicably stick in your mind forever! This is a normal quirk of learning; so don’t get frustrated by it. Just realize that it all averages out the same in the end!

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