Typing Pinyin Is Essential For Learning Chinese

john  —  September 1, 2013

Aug20_PinyinI recently met some­one who had just started to learn Chi­nese and asked me if it was impor­tant to learn pinyin. He wanted to learn to read Chi­nese char­ac­ters, but thought learn­ing pinyin was a waste of time. How­ever, I explained that under­stand­ing pinyin is really impor­tant to be able to pro­nounce the words. It also helps in being able to prac­tice the right pro­nun­ci­a­tion with the right tone. It’s hard at first, as many of the ini­tials and finals are not spo­ken the way we would in Eng­lish. But it gets eas­ier once you know the basics and then it’s just prac­tice. The best part of know­ing how to write pinyin is using it to type emails and SMS in Chi­nese. Of course you still have to know the right Chi­nese char­ac­ter, which is the hard­est part. How­ever, mas­ter­ing pinyin is an essen­tial foun­da­tion to speak­ing good Mandarin.

PS. There are lots of online tools which are great for learn­ing pinyin and prac­tic­ing tones. My favourite is Chinesepod’s pinyin tool which can be down­load to your desktop.

(Blog posted by Ray on August 20, 2013. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)