What textbook do you use for the lessons?
In Los Angeles and Irvine of California, for beginner level, we use My Chinese Classroom as our textbook. With a CD, it all together costs $50. However, if you have your own textbook and want to continue your Chinese lessons where you left off, we can help you to continue your lessons using your own textbook.
In other cities, our private tutors are at their discretion at selecting textbooks.
Do you offer group lessons or private lessons?
Currently we focus on private lessons because we believe one on one lessons are more effective for students. However, group lessons are also available in Alhambra, West Los Angeles and Irvine of California.
When can I start my lessons?
Private lessons can be started as soon as possible. Please contact us for group classes.
How much do you charge for a lesson?
In order to accommodate students' schedules, we charge by the hour. Each hour we charge $45. Students for two lessons. Cancellations must be made by giving a 24 hour prior notice. Students are responsible for the tuition fees if cancellations are made without a 24 hour prior notice.
As cost of livings vary in other cities, we may charge at different prices in other cities.
Can tutors come to my home to give lessons?
Yes. If you live in Beverly Hills, Pasadena, San Marino, Irvine, we can give lessons at your own home for a minimum of a 2 hour lesson. If you live in other cities, home study lessons can be given at the discretion of our tutors. Please contact us for more information.
Should I learn Cantonese or Mandarin?
The short answer is Mandarin, because people who speak Cantonese are learning Mandarin, but not vice versa. Mandarin is spoken by majority of the Chinese population. It's the official language of China, Taiwan, and one of the official languages in Singapore. Cantonese is spoken by people in Hong Kong and southern part of China.
Do you teach Mandarin with a Chinese accent or Taiwanese accent?
We teach you Mandarin with the standard accent. The truth is, educated people in Mainland China and Taiwanese television or radio broadcasters speak Mandarin with little difference. However, it is true that Taiwanese people in general speak differently from Taiwanese television or radio broadcasters (You might wonder why Taiwanese people in general don't learn the standard Mandarin from their TV or radio broadcasters. Don't ask me, ask your Taiwanese friends :-) ). For example, while educated people in Mainland China and Taiwanese television or radio broadcasters pronounce "to be" as "shir4", Taiwanese people in general pronounce it as "si4".
Our instructors come from Beijing, Shanghai, and Taipei, and they speak Mandarin with standard Mandarin pronunciation. However, in case you would like to learn Mandarin from a Taiwanese instructor, we will supply you with a Taiwanese instructor.
Do you teach Simplified Chinese Characters or Traditional Chinese Characters?
We teach both. However, for beginners, we recommend them to learn simplified Chinese characters used by Mainland China and Singapore, and Chinese communities in continental Europe. We also teach traditional Chinese characters used by people in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Chinese communities in the United States and the United Kingdom.
I read your information on "Why Learn Chinese". What other languages do you think are useful in the future?
Good question! We believe that English is definitely a must for people who do not speak English. Then, depending on their interest, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, French, German are all good options. The founder of our institution, Samuel Chong, personally believes that Chinese and Spanish would be the most useful languages in the future, especially for people living in the United States. Please read the "Why learn Spanish" article.
Therefore, to Taiwanese parents, besides teaching your children Taiwanese, teach them to learn English and Mandarin! (Evidence suggests that Taiwanese students' English are already disappointing educators)
To people in the United States, teach your children to learn a foreign language! Chinese is a useful language in the future, so is Spanish. Japanese, French, German, Italian are all good options. Don't let the continental Europeans say "You Americans and British are monolinguals!" Ask your children to take it seriously, and to learn a language of the future. Besides, it's fun to experience different cultures through their languages.
How do I Read Chinese Characters on Your Site?
Do you have other advice for us?
Besides learning Chinese and Spanish, education is important. Learning Chinese and Spanish is just a tool for your education. If you cannot get formal education, you may try self-education. Great business and political leaders spend tremendous time educating themselves through reading books, learning from friends and families, and other means.
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