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First published in UK 2007 by Hodder Education, an Hachette UK Company, 338 Euston Road, London NW1 3BH. Total Mandarin Chinese Copyright 2007, 2011, in the methodology, Thomas Keymaster Languages LLC, all rights reserved; in the content, Harold Goodman. Total Mandarin Chinese Vocabulary Copyright 2009, 2011, in the methodology, Thomas Keymaster Languages LLC, all rights reserved; in the content, Harold Goodman. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher or under licence from the Copyright Licensing Agency Limited. Further details of such licences (for reprographic reproduction) may be obtained from the Copyright Licensing Agency Limited, Saffron House, 610 Kirby Street, London EC1N 8TS, UK. Typeset by Transet Limited, Coventry, England. Printed in Great Britain. Impression 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 Year 2014 2013 2012 2011 ISBN 978 1444 13803 0

Welcome to the Michel Thomas Method Total Mandarin Chinese index Total Mandarin Chinese Vocabulary index Mandarin ChineseEnglish glossary Learning the tones using hand movements 2 4 13 17 20

Welcome to the Michel Thomas Method

Congratulations on purchasing the truly remarkable way to learn a language. With the Michel Thomas Method theres no reading, no writing and no homework. Just sit back, absorb, and soon youll be speaking another language with confidence. The Michel Thomas Method works by breaking a language down into its component parts and enabling you to reconstruct the language yourself to form your own sentences and to say what you want, when you want. By learning the language in small steps, you can build it up yourself to produce ever more complicated sentences. Perfected over 25 years, the all-audio Michel Thomas Method has been used by millions of people around the world. Now its your turn. To get started, simply insert CD 1 and press play!

About Michel Thomas

Michel Thomas (19142005) was a gifted linguist who mastered more than ten languages in his lifetime and became famous for teaching much of Hollywoods A list how to speak a foreign language. Film stars such as Woody Allen, Emma Thompson and Barbra Streisand paid thousands of dollars each for face-to-face lessons. Michel, a Polish Jew, developed his method after discovering the untapped potential of the human mind during his traumatic wartime experiences. The only way he survived this period of his life, which included being captured by the Gestapo, was by concentrating and placing his mind beyond the physical. Fascinated by this experience, he was determined that after the war he would devote himself to exploring further the power of the human mind, and so dedicated his life to education. In 1947, he moved to Los Angeles and set up the Michel Thomas Language Centers, from where he taught languages for over fifty years in New York, Beverly Hills and London. Michel Thomas died at his home in New York City on Saturday 8th January 2005. He was 90 years old.

Total Mandarin Chinese index

Note about transliteration The Mandarin words are transliterated in this track listing using the pin-yin method of romanization. In this method the tones are represented by marks on the vowels that look like the hand movements that were using (see pages 2021): - flat tone (green thumb out) rising tone (blue finger up) v falling and rising tone (red V for victory) ` falling tone (black finger down) In addition, two dots are used above the letter u (). This indicates that the u should be pronounced like the oo in moon, but while you say oo, shape your lips towards the i sound in sit. CD 1 Track 1 Introduction. How to use this course. Background to Chinese. CD 1 Track 2 Tones in Chinese languages. CD 1 Track 3 Flat tone (green thumb out); zhng middle CD 1 Track 4 Rising tone (blue finger up); rn person CD 1 Track 5 Falling and rising tone (red V for victory); w I, me CD 1 Track 6 Falling tone (black finger down); sh to be CD 1 Track 7 The form of the verb to be in Chinese doesnt change: sh (to be) also means am, are, is; w sh I am CD 1 Track 8 n you; n sh you are; the forms of Chinese verbs never change. No word for a or an: w sh rn I am a person

CD 1 Track 9 gu kingdom, nation; zhng gu middle kingdom = China; zhng gu rn middle kingdom person = Chinese (person) CD 1 Track 10 t he, him, she, her, it; du both, all; h and; position of du both, all in Mandarin sentences: You and he both are Chinese, not are both, as in English CD 1 Track 11 mi beautiful; mi gu America; mi gu rn American; yng brave; yng gu England, Britain; yng gu rn English CD 1 Track 12 men = plural form of individual, single form; wmen we, us; nmen you; tmen they, them; ksh but CD 1 Track 13 ma = question marker, to change a statement into a question; sh is can be used to mean yes CD 1 Track 14 nne how about you?; tmenne how about them? CD 1 Track 15 mng busy; also means to be busy CD 1 Track 16 b no, not CD 1 Tracks 1 and 2 hn very, also fulfils the two-syllable meter rule: a dummy word to go with an adjective; b mng not busy CD 1 Tracks 3 and 4 n ho hello; ho good, to be good, do well; n ho ma you good? you doing well? = how are you?

CD 2 Track 5 In Chinese the character/word has the same form for both individual and plural form; word order determines meaning CD 2 Track 6 y also, too; b hn ho not very good, well CD 2 Track 7 b sh not is (trampoline rule) CD 2 Track 8 A question with a question word, such as wi shnme why. All Chinese languages use the same characters to mean the same thing, but their pronunciation differs. CD 2 Track 9 kn to look, see; sh book; kn sh to read book; saying yes by repeating verb CD 2 Track 10 xin zi now; zi at emphasizes at this very moment CD 2 Track 11 Word order in Chinese: whowhenwhat is happening CD 2 Track 12 xing would like to CD 2 Track 13 jin to get together, see somebody, meet; b xing would not like to CD 2 Track 14 ti too; nng can; b nng cannot; tai b nng too no can = too to CD 3 Track 1 ynwei because

CD 3 Track 2 -de indicates possession: wde my, mine; nde your, yours; tde his, her, hers, its; wmende our, ours; nmende your, yours; tmende their, theirs; pngyu friend CD 3 Track 3 losh teacher CD 3 Track 4 wn literature, culture; zhngwn Chinese language ; yngwn English language; xing (would like to) in Chinese can only be followed by a verb CD 3 Track 5 kn dinsh to watch TV; din electrical; sh vision; zi at represents doing something at this moment; word order in Chinese: whowhenhowwhat is happening CD 3 Track 6 zh this; n(de) h wde your and my: you can omit the first de (possessive marker) after n you when you have both nde your and wde my CD 3 Track 7 n that; sh is: can be used to answer yes to a question without using the verb in the question; b not: can be used to answer no to a question without using the verb CD 3 Track 8 titai wife; ti b nng too no can = too to CD 3 Track 9 shnme what; zh sh shnme what is this?; n sh shnme what is that?; word order in questions and answers CD 3 Track 10 shu to speak, say; shu yngwn speak English; shu zhngwn speak Chinese

CD 4 Track 1 hu to be able to (involves ability); b hu not able to; hu shu able to speak; w hu I am able to CD 4 Track 2 ydinr a little bit of CD 4 Track 3 dngrn of course CD 4 Track 4 shi who CD 4 Track 5 xusheng student; h (and) cannot be used to connect sentences or phrases CD 4 Track 6 zhende really; zhende ma really? (as a question); mma mother, Mum CD 4 Track 7 ge = classifier; zhge sh this book; nge rn that man; nge pngyu that friend; n female CD 4 Tracks 8 and 9 yge a, an, one; yge xusheng a student; yge ho losh a good teacher; yge sh a book CD 4 Track 10 ji home; zi ji to be at home; zi in Chinese can be used as and functions as a verb (to be at ) CD 5 Track 1 nr where; zi nr at where CD 5 Track 2 yun far CD 5 Track 3 dgi maybe; bijng Beijing (northern capital)

CD 5 Track 4 zh (zi) to live, stay; shng hi Shanghai (on the sea); shng on; hi sea CD 5 Track 5 yu to have CD 5 Tracks 6 and 7 nn male; word order: whowhenwhat is happening CD 5 Track 8 csu toilet CD 5 Track 9 mi yu not have CD 5 Track 10 nme well, in that case; yuge (from yu yge) have a; shge (from sh yge) be a CD 5 Track 11 More practice with yu have and zh live. CD 5 Track 12 ti ho le wonderful CD 5 Track 13 zi ji to be at home / in the house; zi ji l inside the house; zi [possessive] ji l in [someones] house CD 6 Track 1 zhuzi table CD 6 Track 2 l not used with geographical location; lndn London CD 6 Tracks 3 and 4 yo to want; b yo not want CD 6 Track 5 hn du a lot of; w yo zhge / nge I want this one / that one


CD 6 Track 6 ` to go to q CD 6 Track 7 rnshi to meet, to be acquainted with CD 6 Track 8 jntin today; jn current; tin day CD 6 Track 9 qng wn excuse me; qng please; wn to ask; aiya too bad, very bad, my God CD 6 Track 10 shng to be on; zi shng on CD 6 Track 11 kn jin to notice, see CD 7 Track 1 zi xi to be under CD 7 Track 2 d big; b d not big CD 7 Track 3 yu there is, there are; mi yu there is not; zi nr yu sh? where is there a book?; omitting zi to be at with yu there is and mi yu there is not CD 7 Track 4 xuxio school CD 7 Track 5 zhr here; zi zhr to be here; nr there CD 7 Track 6 mi every; mitin every day

CD 7 Track 7 yude (there is / are) some; zi to be at can be omitted with yu there is and mi yu there is not when there is no ambiguity as to who is doing the action; ji family; mi ji every family CD 7 Track 8 du correct; b cu not bad; cu bad; three ways to say yes: repeat the verb, sh is, du correct; y either / too CD 7 Track 9 b du not correct CD 7 Tracks 10 and 11 zi ji to be at home; zi ji l at [somebodys] home CD 8 Track 1 qng wn excuse me; two-syllable meter rule CD 8 Track 2 bba father, Dad; zh do to know CD 8 Track 3 yo shu want to speak; nng shu can speak CD 8 Track 4 xinsheng (or sheng) Mister, husband; xin first, before; wng xinsheng Mr. Wang CD 8 Track 5 hn du very many, many CD 8 Track 6 xi xie Thank you, thanks; b xi no thanks, you are welcome; when to say xi xie CD 8 Track 7 zi jin Good bye, see you again; zi again; jin to see someone / to meet; li to come; b nng li cannot come CD 8 Track 8 du(ma)? right?



CD 8 Track 9 mi to buy; b yo not want CD 8 Track 10 dngxi a thing, things CD 8 Track 11 knkan to take a look

Total Mandarin Chinese Vocabulary index

NB CD references below refer to CDs 1 and 2 of Total Mandarin Chinese Vocabulary. CD 1 Track 1 Introduction CD 1 Track 2 gu to cross, pass time, is added after a repeatable action to indicate have you?, e.g. n qu guo zhng guo ma? Have you ever been/gone to China? To say you do not do something in the present tense, use bu + do something, e.g. w bu qu na I dont go there. To say you have not done something in the past tense, use mi do guo something, e.g. w mi qu guo mi guo I have not been/gone to America. niu yue New York; bi de other, different CD 1 Track 3 zh only gi to give; gi somebody something give somebody something, e.g. qng gi w bi de sh Please give me a different book. qin money, also a popular Chinese surname CD 1 Track 4 sh hou time, shn me sh hou what time?, e.g. n gi t qian de sh hou when you give her money gi somebody kn to show to somebody, e.g. w gi n kan I show you; dng xi things, zh xi dng xi these things CD 1 Track 5 k y may; dng ran k y of course, you may j is used to ask how many, usually referring to a smaller quantity such as ten or less. j implies a question, so ma is not needed at the end of the sentence, e.g. n ji yu j ge rn How many people are in your family (home)? CD 1 Track 6 ling pair of hi zi children



nan hai zi boy (where nan means male), n hai zi girl (where n means female)
CD 1 Track 7 xio little. It is common to call a young child xio png you little friend. Also to address 2030-year-olds as xio + surname in the workplace, e.g. xio Wang, and to address elders as lo old + surname, e.g. lo Wang k fi gun coffee shop sn three, e.g. n yu ling ge hai zi hai sh sn ge hai zi Do you have two children or three children? CD 1 Track 9 yao (you) will, (you) want, speaking of the future, e.g. w yao qu n (de) ji I will go to your house. zu to do h zho passport d hit, e.g. w yao d dian hua I will make a phone call = hit a telephone. CD 1 Track 10 bo newspaper cng from (somewhere), zu by means of (vehicle), do to, towards (somewhere), e.g. w cng bi jng zu hu ch do shang hi I am taking a train from Beijing to Shanghai. CD 1 Track 11 ch vehicle; hu ch train = fire vehicle; fi j airplane = fly machine; q ch car = vapour vehicle; gng gng q ch bus = public vapour vehicle CD 1 Track 12 ki ch to drive a vehicle; xing gng Hong Kong bi jng Beijing, northern capital, bi north; nan jng Nanjing, southern capital, nan south; xn Xian, western peace, x west; shn dng Shangdong province, dng east CD 2 Track 1 gao su to tell, inform, let know le is used to indicate that something is done, e.g. w mi le ling ge q ch I bought two cars. Another use of le is to indicate a change from the way things were. li tired, e.g. w li le I am tired.

CD 2 Track 2 kui about to, almost, soon to happen, e.g. t zuo hu ch kuai dao ni yu le He took the train and just arrived in New York. cuo bad, mistake; cu can also be used as a verb, to make a mistake, e.g. w cu le I am mistaken, I made a mistake. CD 2 Track 3 bi cup, y bi cha a cup of tea CD 2 Track 4 ho ch very tasty = good eat; ho h good drink wn late CD 2 Track 5 yng gi should cha bu do about the same y yng the same, just like; b y yng different, not the same CD 2 Track 6 pio ticket; fi j piao airline ticket; hu ch piao train ticket mi to sell: be careful not to mix up mi to sell and mi to buy. Tones matter. CD 2 Track 7 s four; w five; liu six CD 2 Track 8 kui colloquial term for a unit of currency rn mn b Chinese money: literally peoples currency: currency of China as distinct from Taiwan where the New Taiwan Dollar (Ta b) is used. sh ten CD 2 Track 9 s sh forty, w sh fifty; s sh sn forty-three r two; use r in telephone numbers, dates or counting, e.g. r sh twenty. Otherwise use ling, e.g. ling ge hai zi a pair of children. CD 2 Track 10 xng q week (start + period of time); xng q y Monday; xng q r Tuesday; xng q sn Wednesday; xng q s Thursday; xng q w Friday; xng q li Saturday



CD 2 Track 11 xng q tin/r Sunday. r = sun, e.g. xng q tin jian See you on Sunday. q seven; ba eight; jiu nine xia ge next; shang ge last ho number, e.g. dian hua hao telephone number CD 2 Track 12 lng zero nin year yu month; y yu January; r yu February; sn yu March; s yu April; w yu May; liu yu June; q yu July; b yu August; ji yu September; sh yu October; sh y yu November; sh r yu December CD 2 Track 13 When giving a date start with the biggest unit. CD 2 Track 14 Conclusion

Mandarin ChineseEnglish glossary

NB This glossary contains vocabulary from Total Mandarin Chinese Vocabulary, as well as some extra vocabulary which is taught in Perfect Mandarin Chinese with the Michel Thomas Method. Go to for more information.


ba indicates suggestion of agreement b eight bi hundred bi wn million bn half bn to solve a problem bn f method, way of doing something bng to do something to help to do something bng someone mng to help someone out bo newspaper bei cup bi north bi de other, different bu k qi dont be polite, dont mention it bu xi dont thank me b yo qin free b y yng different ci food, dish cn gun restaurant c times (one time, two times, the first time, an occasion) cha tea ch b do about the same ch vehicle ch fn to eat chung bed cng from d hit d ji everyone, all d ji ha Hello, everyone. (a way to say Hello to or begin speaking to any group) do to, toward

dn wi company, workgroup, workpace dng ran of course dng to wait din oclock din hu telephone (electrical speech) din t lift, elevator = electric stairs dng east dng to comprehend, understand du bu q sorry du more du fu tofu du ji le how long have? du sho how much?, how many? (referring to any number, especially a larger number) hungry r two fn din hotel fng jin room fi j airplane = fly machine fi j chang airport f qin to pay money gao su to tell, inform, let know gi to give gi somebody kn to show to somebody gng gng q ch bus = shared vapour vehicle gu expensive gu cross, pass time hai sh or (used in question sentences) hi zi children ho OK


ho number (telephone number) ho bu ho OK?, is that OK? ho ch delicious, tasty (good eat) ho kn pretty (good look) h someone shu hu to speak with someone h to drink h zho passport hu spoken language hui broken, bad hu ch train = fire vehicle hu zh or (in positive sentence) j how many? (referring to a relatively small quantity) jio to be called ji nine ji wine ji passage of time, a long time passed ju de to feel, think k fi coffee k fi gun coffee shop ki ch to drive a car kn de dng to understand by seeing k x its a pity k y may kng p afraid that..., perhaps... kui about to, almost kui unit of currency (colloquial term) kui fast lo elder lo bn boss, person in charge le sentence + le represents something changes li tired l mian inside ling pair of lng zero li six mi to sell mi dong xi to buy something (go shopping) mn slow mi shn me dont worry,

its nothing mi (yu) bn f theres nothing to be done about it mi yu rn no one mi gun xi never mind, does not matter mi wn t no problem mi yu did not (do something in the past) mng tin tomorrow mng zi name

n to take something n which? n ge which one? n li response to a compliment to express politeness n xi which of these? nan south nn hi zi boy = male child nin year ni yue NewYork n hi zi girl = female child p ji beer pio ticket q seven q ch car = vapour vehicle qin money qin thousand qng please rn hu then (after some time has passed) r sun sn three shng ge last shng w a.m., morning sho few, less shi de whose? shn me de so on, etc. shn me du everything (non-specific) shn me something du every specific thing shn me sh hu when?, what time?

shn me yng de what kind of...? sh ten sh hu time sh fu mate, buddy shu (jio) to sleep s four (unlucky number: same sound as s death, different tone) tng de dng to understand from hearing tng shuo heard wi out wi gu foreign wi mian outside wn late wn ten thousand wn fn evening food, supper wn shang evening wn t problem, question w five x west x huan to like to do something xi ge next xi w afternoon, p.m. xing gng Hong Kong xio little xio sh hour xi plural marker instead of ge (zh xi rn these men) xng q week xng q r Tuesday xng q li Saturday xng q r/tin Sunday xng q sn Wednesday xng q s Thursday xng q y Monday xng q w Friday

xi xi to rest xu x to study, learn yo will, shall yo b rn otherwise y bi ch a cup of tea y dng definitely, certainly y hu after, behind y jng already y qin before y yng the same, just like yn hng bank (silver money firm) yng gi should yu mi yu is there?, do you have? yu qin rich yu y si interesting yu yng useful yng to use y fish yu month zn me how? zn me bn? whats to be done? zn me yng how is it going?, what do you think of?, how about? zhn stop, station zho to seek, look for zh only z word zu to walk, go, depart zu most zu ha very best zu to do zu by means of (different character from zu to do) zu tin yesterday zo to sit down



Learning the tones using hand movements

Mandarin has four tones, plus a neutral non-tone, which are critical for communication. While there is considerable leeway for differences in pronunciation (many Chinese learn Mandarin as a second language) there is very little for tones. If your tone is off you wont be understood. Tones, when made user-friendly, are actually quite simple to grasp and integrate into your learning. The method for learning the tones* which you will experience in this course is specifically designed to address all styles of language learning. It will permit your central nervous system to permanently create pathways that reflect your personal learning style (visual, kinaesthetic, auditory, etc.) and support you in effortless recall and usage of the correct tone at the proper moment in your communication. It works on a subconscious level. You will very quickly find that you are using the movements as a natural part of your learning. These movements work. They have been tested and refined on students without any previous knowledge of Mandarin from many different backgrounds and age levels (teens to the elderly). I encourage you to allow your hands to move with the movements. For some of you that will be essential. For others, this will be less essential. Trust whatever helps you. It will work for you as you permit it to do so. In this method of teaching tones, each movement is linked to a tone and colour. Romanized Mandarin (pin-yin) is written with four distinct tones, which are shown with marks over the affected vowel. These marks are shown in brackets below. The tones are generally listed in the following order when taught and when words are listed in a dictionary.

*patent pending

First tone: ( ) long, steady tone. Colour: Green. Movement: Thumb out to side with closed fist. Example: zhng (middle).


Second tone: ( ) rising tone. Colour: Blue. Movement: Index finger pointing up. Example: rn (person).

Third tone: ( ) fallingrising tone. This tone actually resembles a tick mark (UK) or check mark (US) (). It starts rather low, goes down a bit and then rises up to the level of the green tone. Please pay close attention to the Chinese native speakers demonstration of this tone. Colour: Red. Movement: Closed fist with index and middle fingers forming a V and pointing up. Example: w (I, me).

Fourth tone: ( ` ) falling tone. Colour: Black. Movement: Index finger pointing down. Example: sh (to be, am, is, are).

Neutral non-tone: toneless. Colour: None. Movement: Closed fist. Example: ma (question marker).

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