"Success is the result of perfection, hard work, learning from failure, loyalty, and persistence." -Colin Powell
Learning a new language is not an easy task for many; however, success is possible, even with the most difficult of languages.
Certain languages such as Arabic, Spanish, and Mandarin Chinese are extremely useful in today's world for social and economic reasons. Nonetheless, of the three previously mentioned languages, Arabic and Chinese are some of the most difficult to acquire for native-English speakers.
Mandarin Chinese may be a headache for beginners; nevertheless, with over one billion speakers worldwide it can be practised and spoken without even leaving the UK.
Therefore, without further ado, Superprof is here to instruct curious Brummies about some vital aspects of Chinese culture and where Mandarin can be acquired at a language school or through private tutoring in the city of Birmingham.
Essential Aspects of Chinese Culture
To truly immerse yourself in language learning or the acquisition of a foreign tongue, it is necessary to learn more about the culture and the people associated with the language you have chosen to learn.
Discovering the essential aspects of culture, family traditions, delicious dishes, and ancient roots make learning Chinese an unforgettable experience.
Therefore, to help Chinese learners stay motivated, develop a love for the language and culture, and acquire the fundamentals more rapidly, the following are some of the significant aspects of Chinese culture that inspire students to continue learning:
- Confucianism: Confucious' beliefs and ideas have influenced all major aspects of Chinese culture for over 2,500 years. Confucious, born in 551 BC and died in 479 BC, was a Chinese teacher, politician, and philosopher. His philosophical ideas that focused on education and creating ethical models within the family and the public have been grouped and are now known as Confucianism. While many consider Confucianism to be a religion, it is better understood as a system of social and ethical philosophy. To understand the roots of Chinese culture is to understand Confucianism. Check out Confucious' most famous quotes to get a glimpse into his wisdom.
- Chinese Festivals: the Chinese are internationally known for their festivals and ancient traditions that are celebrated all over the world in Chinese communities. The Chinese New Year or Chinese Spring Festival is the most well-known and most important. The Chinese Spring Festival begins on the first day of the first month of the Chinese calendar and ends with the Lantern Festival which is on the 15th day of the month. It is a time when families get together and cook delicious foods such as dumplings. Another famous festival is the Qingming Festival or Tomb Sweeping Day in English. Celebrated from the 4 to the 6 of April each year it is the most crucial day for offering sacrifices to their ancestors. The previously mentioned are only two of the many Chinese festivals; there are many more to be learnt about before visiting China.
- Chinese Food: with more than 5000 years of history, the Chinese have had plenty of time to perfect their delicious dishes! Chinese cuisine has many different styles and is quite varied. The most famous culinary traditions include Guangdong (Cantonese) cuisine, Shandong cuisine, Jiangsu cuisine, Sichuan cuisine, Fujian cuisine, Hunan cuisine, Anhui cuisine and Zhejiang cuisine. When eating, Chinese people use chopsticks and pick food from a shared dish; and it is not uncommon for the Chinese to go out for a delicious meal when talking business. Delicious plates of Chinese food can be enjoyed all over the world and is many foreigners favourite type of cuisine.
By investigating more about the three previously mentioned aspects of Chinese culture, students will feel more involved in their language and culture studies and be motivated to speak to Chinese people in their mother tongue.
Learning the Basics of Chinese at a Language School in Birmingham
Since Birmingham is often referred to as the UK's "second city", many immigrants from all over the world are seeking work opportunities in Birmingham to earn more money than in their country of origin and enjoy a better life.
Brummies have become accustomed to working along or conversing with immigrants from distinct countries such as China, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and India.
Since there are so many demographics, there are many opportunities to learn and speak a foreign tongue in the city of Birmingham.
Therefore, to meet the needs of Brummies interested in learning Chinese as a foreign tongue, the following are some of the best language schools in the city of Birmingham to learn the fundamentals of Chinese:
- Brasshouse Languages: located at the library of Birmingham, Brasshouse Languages is the best place in the city of Birmingham to learn Mandarin Chinese since it is widely regarded as being the largest adult education centre in the UK specialising in language courses and services. According to the most recent brochure, there are seven Mandarin Chinese classes offered to students of all learning levels. For example, there are courses for beginners, beginners plus, improvers, intermediate students, and a programme for advanced learners known as advanced conversation & culture. Courses have a month duration and cost £72. Check out their website and brochure to learn more about attending language classes at Brasshouse.
- Languages for All at the University of Birmingham: Mandarin Chinese is undoubtedly one of the most popular languages currently being learnt on campus at the University of Birmingham. The Languages for All programme offers the possibility for the general public and undergraduate students at the University of Birmingham to learn more about critical foreign languages on the world scene. The teachers are highly qualified, and classes are tailored for students of all levels. Check out their website to contact the Language for All programme to learn more about the Mandarin Chinese classes offered on campus.
- Listen & Learn: offering language courses across the UK & Ireland, Listen & Learn is a highly recommended academic institute to review the basics of Mandarin Chinese. Native-speaking, qualified Mandarin teachers offer classes in a business setting with other colleagues or private lessons at home at a time most convenient for the student. Course books are provided for students interested in learning General or Business Mandarin. There is even the option to complete classes with your Mandarin tutor via Skype.
The language schools mentioned above offer the most highly qualified Chinese Mandarin classes in the city of Birmingham.
It is important to note that attending foreign language classes with other motivated students is a unique and rewarding experience that won't soon be forgotten. So, for what are you waiting? Start attending Chinese courses today!
The Best Online Resources for Brummies to Find Chinese Tutors
With the rapid development of modern-day technology, many aspects of daily life have been affected.
For example, we read the tabloids on electronic devices rather than a newspaper, we send emails instead of letters, and we learn essential academic disciplines using apps on our smartphones rather than reviewing textbooks.
It is important to state that technology has made language learning more accessible to all since it can be done via video calling with a qualified tutor halfway around the world.
But how does one find a professional tutor?
Easy, by scrolling through the profiles of accredited tutors on highly recommended tutoring sites. Therefore, without further ado, to help interested ones wanting to gain proficiency in Mandarin Chinese in the Birmingham area, the following are the best online resources to find an experienced Chinese tutor offering online or face-to-face language courses:
- Tutorhunt: a terrific site that claims to have the best prices on the market since they offer zero commission tutoring. Tutorhunt currently features a wide variety of highly recommended Mandarin Chinese tutors in Birmingham and its surroundings that boast excellent reviews and are willing to travel some miles to conduct classes. Hourly rates range from £10-30 depending on the expertise and experience of the tutor. Check out their website to find a Mandarin tutor that suits your unique learning needs.
- Superprof: our tutors at Superprof have a reputation for academic excellence. According to our site, 26 tutors are offering Chinese lessons in the Greater Birmingham area. Prices are competitive, lesson plans are tailormade for the student, and the 1st lesson is offered for free! Trust us when we say that there will be no problem finding a qualified and engaging Mandarin tutor at Superprof.
When students choose to learn Mandarin Chinese outside the classroom with a private tutor, they are effectively taught since classes are one-to-one without distractions, and tailored to the needs of the learner. The previously mentioned sites are highly recommended to find the best Mandarin tutors available.
By following the helpful tips of experts, attending a language school or private classes with a tutor, and taking it one step at a time, Brummies can acquire fluency in Chinese without even leaving their city!