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Learning Chinese: How do Children Choose Textbooks?

The selection of teaching materials for overseas Chinese children when learning Chinese has always been a very important task. After all, It will directly affect children’s interest and enthusiasm in learning at the initial stage. No matter what you study, choosing textbooks is a very important task, because it will directly affect students’ learning effect.

At present, for overseas Chinese children, there are mainly the following teaching materials to learn Chinese: Ji Da Chinese, Ma Liping, Xin Shuang Shuang, domestic Chinese, and Chinese online school independent teaching materials. These kinds of teaching materials have their own characteristics Consequently, people must consider many factors when selecting teaching materials. For example, the children’s own Chinese level (whether they speak Chinese from childhood and are fluent in listening and speaking), how much time and energy parents and children can devote to learning Chinese (whether there are other higher priority academic and extracurricular activities), and parents’ expectations for their children to learn Chinese, etc.

Read Chinese books
Read Chinese books

So, which one is more suitable for your children? Today, let’s talk about the characteristics and applicable groups of these textbooks systematically.

1. Ji Da Chinese  for Learning Chinese《暨大中文

This textbook was compiled by Jinan University, and many overseas Chinese schools are using it. The original schedule of this textbook is two volumes in one academic year, with twelve volumes in total, which will be completed in six years.

The advantage of Ji-Chinese is that it is moderately difficult. In addition,  it is gradual. Plus! there is a matching workbook, which pays more attention to writing. This set of textbooks is more suitable for children with ordinary Chinese reading and writing skills.

However, this textbook also has its shortcomings. On the one hand, the textbook has not been updated for several years,  on another, the reading volume is insufficient. so if you use this textbook, you need to add extra supplementary reading to your children.

2. Ma Liping’s Learning Chinese Textbook 马立平中文教材

Ma Liping’s Chinese textbook is widely used in Chinese schools in North America. The advantage of this textbook is that it provides abundant after-school textbooks and pays attention to reading comprehension. Even if it is not used as a textbook, it is quite good to use it simply as supplementary reading materials for children. Compared with Ji Da Chinese, Ma Liping’s Chinese textbook will learn Pinyin later, and the amount of handwritten homework is not particularly large. However, the number of new words is quite large. In contrast, the texts in the Maliping textbook are in line with children’s age growth, which is equivalent to a set of advanced Chinese reading materials. It is very suitable for families who mainly learn reading and writing and intend to learn Chinese for a long time.

The disadvantage of this textbook is that from grade 4 onwards, the difficulty and requirements of learning will increase sharply, which is not as gradual as Ji Da Chinese.

3. Three, Four, Five Fast-reading Textbooks for Learning Chinese《四五快读教材》

Like Ma Liping’s idea, this set is an introduction to Chinese characters. However, it is more difficult for students with weak foundations. In addition, parents of some students report that Wukong Literacy APP is very convenient to use.  children who learn Chinese characters with it are easily attracted because of its accessible interface. You can also try it.  It is still beneficial to read it quickly and repeatedly. At least the 1,000 Chinese characters students claimed in this set of books can be remembered because of its down-to-earth approach. Parents can also occasionally test their children to see if they really remember and understand the meaning.

4. Compile Studying Chinese Teaching Materials

At present, 50% of primary and secondary schools in China have uniformly used the so-called Ministry-edited version of Chinese textbooks. there is essentially no such thing as a Ministry-edited version and people’s education version at present. This set of textbooks focuses on all-round Chinese enlightenment education for students and comprehensively improving their Chinese literacy. At the same time, it covers Chinese history, culture, geography and other knowledge. However, this is the most difficult set of all Chinese textbooks. If the children are in preschool, they can be enlightened first with children’s literacy books such as 45 Fast Reading, Preschool Literacy 600, Hong En Literacy, etc., and it is advisable to wait until the children reach the first grade before starting the edition of the learning department.

If your expectation for children is to learn Chinese to the level of their mother tongue, and children have a good Chinese foundation and fluent listening and speaking, then this textbook is the most suitable one.

I hope this sharing can provide some useful information for parents in their children’s choice of Chinese learning materials. Whether you are tutoring your children or letting them go to Chinese schools, looking for effective textbooks is always imperative. I hope you can find Chinese teaching materials suitable for your children!

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