It’s been a little while since we worked on our Mandarin Chinese, due to computer issues. With that in mind, we revised some basics today. (There seems a never ending list of to-do issues. You can tell it’s about time for half term!)
We’re not at a character reading level but we can manage some pinyin, so we did reading, tracing, writing, and finding pinyin words – hello, I am, years, and numbers. (You can download my free pinyin worksheets from TpT.) The mini word searches are by way of a worksheet bribe; it’s one of their favourite homeschool activities.
It went pretty well, bearing in mind this is effectively the fourth language, in total, that we’ve embarked upon. (We speak English, we study Spanish and Mandarin, and they’ve previously studied some French. We dropped the French because they didn’t like it and they preferred Spanish.) They remembered the tones, even if the pronunciation needed a little tweaking. There was the usual funnies like, “Why is si4 four not yes?” (Well, that’s because it’s not Spanish! Still, great for observational and correlational skills, I guess.) And we got through shi4 versus shi2 without awkwardness, which I will count as a definite win. In fact, being the young sponges they are, they remember this stuff better than I ever do. They have the ears for it.
After half term, I’m going to get them back on Gus on the Go Mandarin, to re-associate Chinese characters with fun again. They still find them alien, which is why we mainly focus on pinyin. I’m just glad to be doing a little Chinese with them, for cultural reasons. They are doing super well with Spanish, so I’m not worried about how far they do or don’t take Mandarin. One has to pick and choose one battles, of which the main one is usually time…