Previous Lesson Next Lesson

64 Responses to “CT_001: The Four Tones”

  1. Jorge Mendez

    Very Nice this will be my new favorite podcast to listen to during my train ride to work. I just have one comment.
    Kiran sounds like she is a little to far away from the mic, which made it a little hard to figure out the pronunciation of some of the words. I really like when Adam pronounces the word because he sounds like he is a little closer to the mic.

    Nice job

  2. Michelle Hernandez

    I agree with Jorge Mendez. I am a female with a deep voice and therefore, Adam’s voice is CLEARER to me for pronunciation. I would recommend that Kiran says the verse/word. And then Adam, then silence for us to practice. I would love to hear Adam’s voice pronunciate the words and versus. It gives me an idea of what a deeper voice sounds like when the words are spoken.
    PS. I love it, also, when Adam says stuff like, “Isn’t that interesting?” It gives the podcasts personality.
    Keep up the good work.
    I think I’m going to sign up for Premium content Monday. I’ve been listening thru lessons one thru 4 every day this week.
    I love it.
    Another suggestion, if I may……in your notes, or premium notes….
    adding the phonetic English sounds to the words. For example, zia = zeeah OR xie xie = shyeah shyeah. I was doing this with lessons one and two. It helped me ALOT!!

  3. Deborah, there is a ‘download’ link at the bottom of the player above. Right click on this link and choose ‘Save as.’ This will save it on your computer. From there, you are free to burn it on to CD or DVD if you wish. Use the Contact Us link on the right sidebar if you have any problems.

  4. I just found your site and checked out lesson 52; I would like to know more about advanced lessons. I have been learing Mandarin for about two years and I primarily need more listening tools and longer conversations. Your approach seems to be good. Any suggestions?

  5. Hi Pete. Every 30 lessons, I will be increasing the difficulty slightly by adding more Chinese within the lesson. Expect the next jump in lesson 61. The goal is to eventually be able to conduct most of the lesson in Chinese. I will also be adding more resources to the website in the form of music and videos to give you other forms of input. If you have any suggestions for anything specific you think would be of benefit, please send them this way.

  6. Thanks for your reply; I’ve found that listening is definitely the hardest part for me, even after two years of serious study and many visits to China. So many accents and different ways of saying things plus context is extremely important. By the way, how do you pay for this site? Premium subscribers? I don’t see many adds.

  7. Currently all the revenue used to support this website comes from Premium subscribers. However I’m looking to change the model over the next little while to allow me to have more content available on the “free” side, without having to resort to traditional ads so stay tuned!

  8. Hi Eric,

    I would say that the version you are hearing is probably closer to a “joo” sound. Different speakers from different regions will have slightly different ways of pronouncing it. In later lessons you will hear speakers from other regions as well, which will hopefully give you a better understanding of the different possibilities.

  9. Thank you for your help. I would like to make a suggestion, though. Can you put a Pinyin consonant and vowel pronunciation chart online that makes a more simplified and more actual conversion of the actual sound? I do not mean to be nit picking on an already established writing system, but it does not seem to me that the actual pronunciation matches the latin letters that are being used.

  10. Hi. Thank you for this. It is helpful so far. Could you help me translate something into pinyin please. I’m supposed to be going to Taiwan at the end of this month for a community tourism workshop. The english statement I wish to translate to mandarin is:

    “A democratic Taiwan that shows sacred regard for the inalienable Rights and Freedoms of man is to be preferred above any socialist system that interferes with these Rights and Freedoms”

  11. Thank you. This is what I got from someone who works in the embassy in my country here.

    zi you min zhu Taiwan chong shang chi ban ren quan, quan sheng guo na xie gan she ren men quan li han zi you de gong chan guo jia.

    I have not put in the tones as u can see. Does the above translation give the same meaning? whats the difference between that and the one you gave me? Thank you for your help. It is precious to me right now.

  12. My version says: Democratic Taiwan thinks more of people’s rights and freedoms than socialist countries.

    Your version says: Free and democratic Taiwan upholds human rights while communist countries interfere with people’s rights and freedoms.

    (A little advanced for lesson 1 of my course, but hopefully it helped)

  13. Jonatan

    I’d say Kevin, if you can understand the next lesson, you were right to move on 😉
    If you feel that you’ve reached a level that’s too high for you, just go back a few lessons and repeat them all.
    Hey, I made it to the end this way, so I think it’s an OK method. 🙂

    Most important thing is not to give up!

  14. Hi Kevin,

    I agree with Jonatan. As far as vocabulary goes, if a word is important enough it will show up again in later lessons. If you find yourself not understanding later lessons, then that’s usually a hint that it might be worthwhile to review some of the earlier lessons.

  15. Gareth Denyer

    yes, one of the real strengths of this course is that every effort is made to use words in several different lessons. Getting the words in different contexts really helps me to remember so much more than if I try and remember them by rote. Indeed, it’s quite a buzz when I recognise a word that was used in a previous lesson! 🙂

  16. Hi Mukesh,

    Each person’s learning rate is different. One nice thing about this course is that you can go at your own pace and stop and review anytime you feel yourself falling behind. We had one user go through 200 lessons in about 2 months!

    The transcripts and review exercises on the premium side are designed to help keep you on track too.

  17. I am working in China and think that your podcasts are great but I can’t work out how to get the early lessons onto my ipod. Could you provide some really simple instructions on how to do this as I’m not really a high-tech person. Thank you.

  18. Thanks for your prompt reply Adam. To be honest I think the problem lies with my computer which has been provided by the school I work for and has a mixture of English and Chinese software. I followed your instructions and after 2+ hours of downloading lessons 11-20 I opened the folder and found a bunch of pages bearing pictures of miniscule flags – no lessons. I guess that’s just part of Being in China – but thanks anyway. I will continue to follow your excellent lessons on my computer – just wish I could get them on to my ipod.

  19. Success! I still can’t do a block download but I am managing to download the old lessons one by one- so thanks for your help. I have a long bus trip ahead of me tomorrow and am looking forward to filling up my time with your lessons. Trisha

  20. Louis

    Dear Adam,

    At present I am using some of the free lessons from your site they are really great, the way you have designed the lessons deserve special commend. in addition, your teaching method is very productive and easy.

    Best Wishes

  21. Dear Sir Adam,
    This Site is very well 😀 hopefully I will learn Chinese faster that way than lokking on wikipedia..It’s a little bit hard to find the difference between rising and falling rising tone, but maybe I just need practise.

    Thank you!
    greetings from Vietnam

  22. 你好adam 老师
    im still abigner at chinies language although i learned it for one year but actually i didnt study hard but i becom like study chinese aftar i had see your great lessons and i hope to becom better at chinese language with your help and supporting to me…….

  23. Hi Will, Justine – you can use the download link found on the right of the play button at the top of this page. Then click the link on the right of the page to advance to lesson two, where you can do the same. You can do this for free for all 420 lessons in our course!

    If you prefer to download all the lessons at once, rather than individually this way, you can purchase a lesson download package for each of the 7 levels. The lessons there also feature integrated transcripts that you can view on your iPod screen while listening.

    Hope that helps!

  24. My friend wanted to learn chinese, so I thought I would learn it with her. We are both beginners and we would like to know how to write chinese characters properly. We just copy them down and there must be some proper way to do so. We really like your site. It is very helpful. Thanks.

  25. Luise (admin)

    Hi Dylan,

    Yes, in general strokes are made from left to right and top to bottom. If you keep following the stroke orders on our site, you will find yourself automatically following these rules for new characters. Keep it up!

  26. habab

    I’ve just listend to my first lesson and I found it easy and so clear, but I am having a problem with how to write because it’s not possible to write in English letters. am I supposed to start writing the words in lesson 1 because I don’t know how to do in chinese symbols.

  27. Alikie Creary

    I’m loving your podcasts. I have just downloaded the first 60 lessons. The first four free lessons were excellent.
    I hope that soon, I will be able to identify the tones with ease. I found some of the hints and tips offered on the site, quite amusing. I’m Jamaican, and some of the pronunciation sounds like our local dialect.

    Excellent pod. Keep up the good work.

  28. By purchasing the Combo Package does that give unlimited Online Access or only 6 weeks?

    I have attempted to purchase some lessons however the web site does not work for me i.e. I am unable to purchase. Can you please assist?

    I am currently in China and have tried to use the vocabulary Rec and Play however this is not working. Is that because it is associated with Facebook which is blocked in China?

  29. trevorjohnsullivan


    Not sure if it’s been pointed out yet but in the transcript, in the section

    “Now our course is a little bit different from other courses in tat it is progressive”

    There is a typo with tat, clearly mean to type “that”

    Great lessons so far.

  30. saldrichla27

    Your lessons are so great, and the music is adorable. I’ve been listening while driving, and got up to lesson 20, then back again to two-through-six a couple of times. Each time, I’m anticipating the answers and my pronunciation is getting better. FINALLY I’m looking on the website today. LOTS TO LEARN! haha. My biggest rush is hearing things I’ve learned spoken by characters in The Untamed. Since I could probably watch that show over and over until death, I consider it part of my lesson plan. Thanks for all your hard work and beautiful organizational skills.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.