Friday, August 08, 2008

Hi Teacher!

Now I know what the word teacher is in Chinese. I also know how to say hello. But, I haven't really registered words in a sequence.

If someone says in English, "How do you say teacher?" I would say, "Lou shi." However, when my students speak to me in Chinese. This is what I hear: blaaah, blaAAAh, blah, blah (This is my impression of Chinese tones).

Recently, my student said (in Chinese), "Hey teacher." And I understood and responded in English. I realize it's the base form of communication, but good god I was excited. I've been here 2 months people. I don't think I'm a natural when it comes to Chinese. I'm what we in the language education world lovingly call a slow student.

Fun story. The end.


ticknart said...

The Chinese they speak there, is it Mandarin or Cantonese?

Alliya said...

The main language spoken is Mandarin, but a lot of people speak Taiwanese as well.

otis said...

I wouldn't assume that you're slow. THe first two months are tough, you've got to get used to your job, new food and lifestyle, and fight off the homesickness.

I think the list of words that I had down after two months was something like: Teacher, Hello, Good-bye, Dog-meat, Blue, Foreigner, Electrical Fire, Public Square,the name of the kindergarten where I worked and the phrase "I can't speak Chinese".

Jason said...

I wouldn't really say that she's homesick. In fact, it's more likely that she's less sick because she's no longer in this cold-ass, mold-infested beach shanty!

But otherwise, O's right, you'll pick it up soon.

Alliya said...

Awww. I miss the beach shanty. And my kickass roommates. But you're right, I don't miss the SF summers.