This first lesson begins with some simple greetings that you can use at any time of day. Grammar focuses on two common forms of asking questions. Explanations are given for writing the eight new characters taught in this lesson.
How are you?
I am fine, thank you.
I am fine too.
|你||pron. (singular) you|
|我||pron. I, me, self
|好||adj. good, fine
|很||adv. very, quite, very much|
|也||adv. also; too
|谢||vb. thanks, thank you
|吗||pt. (question form used at the end of sentence)|
|呢||pt. (for questions on a subject under consideration)
你好 is the most common greeting and can be used at any time of day.
您 is a polite usage of 你 that is used to show respect when addressing elders.
Asking questions with 吗
There are many forms for interrogative sentences in Chinese. One of the most common is to add 吗 to the end of a sentence. It is not necessary to change the word order of the sentence.
Asking questions with 呢
Another form of interrogative sentence in Chinese is to add 呢 after the noun and pronoun. 你呢? is similar to “And you?” in English.
Read the following phrases and translate them into English.
If possible use paper with squares on it. Remember each character should appear as if it is inside a square without touching the edges of the square. Refer to the writing basics lesson if you are unsure of the different strokes.
This concludes the first lesson. You should now be familiar with 7 different Chinese characters and be able to make several sentences using them. Read over this lesson’s contents as many times as necessary until you feel you have mastered all the material.