So during our trip I've been trying to learn as many Chinese words as possible. So far the words I know that Chinese people actually understand when I say them are the words for beautiful, really really good, your welcome, thank you, America, and no thank you. What makes learning Chinese so difficult is the tones you use when you speak. Akmed and Saife explained this to me when they described the words for water and sleep. Both use the word shway except one is pronounced flat while the other one loops like sh-waaaay. Our tour guide today explained there are 4 different tones. The first is flat like aahh. The second is rising like aaaaaaah. The third is falling like aah. The final is the swoop like aaaaa-hhhhhh. Its hard to describe these sounds in writing but I think this is so interesting as it is much different then American language. Its fairly difficult as I always described myself as tone deaf and have trouble with tones with singing in english. I really really enjoy trying to learn Chinese and I think it would be nice to try and learn more of the individual sounds Chinese syllables make up. One sound that is hard for all of us is the sound x makes as its more of an shh sounds then what we're used to. I've also wondered that because Chinese Language uses tones more if its better for singing. When we go to KTV all the Chinese students sing beautifully. This is most likely due to the fact they sing very often, but I also wondered that since their language uses tones like our singing does. I know very little about singing and even less about Chinese language but I thought it was an interesting speculation.
TrackBack URL: http://blog.lib.umn.edu/cgi-bin/mt-tb.cgi/190375