Archive | Chinese Grammar

Chinese grammar tips for beginners.

What You’ve Gotta Know About the Chinese Verb “Shi”

shi chinese

What could be simpler than the little verb “to be”?

A lot, as it turns out.

The good news is that the Chinese verb for “to be,” 是 (shì), isn’t irregular like it is in so many European …

Moving on Up: 9 Must-know Chinese Grammar Patterns for the Intermediate Learner

intermediate chinese grammar

Remember cubbies, sharing and nap time?

It’s a distant memory, isn’t it?

Our kindergarten days are long past.

So we’d better sound like we’ve grown up some since then, right?

Then say goodbye to simple Chinese sentence structures!

Even …

The Definite Guide to the Chinese Ba Construction

chinese ba

Chinese grammar has a way of lulling you into a false sense of security.

No verb conjugation?

No singulars or plurals?

No gender?

Subject-verb-object word order?

Chinese grammar? Easy peasy.

That is, until you’ve built up a solid base of …

5 Solid Structures for Building Simple Mandarin Chinese Sentences

5 solid structures for building simple mandarin chinese sentences

Whether you just started studying Chinese or have been working daily to improve, it can be hard to take everything in and put it all together.

Sometimes fear can cripple you.

So take a step back and stop over

13 Mandarin Chinese Grammar Patterns and Structures We Love to Hate

mandarin chinese grammar patterns structures

The conventional wisdom is that Mandarin Chinese grammar is easy.

After all, the hard parts are Chinese tones, characters, and chengyu, right?

If you’re no longer a newbie, you might be cursing that conventional wisdom right now.

Because we …

No Nonsense Newbie Tips: Differences between 的, 得 and 地!


They all sound the same but don’t mean the same thing?!

The differences between 的,  得 and 地 in Chinese are like their, they’re and there. 

They have completely different meanings, even though they sound the same.

Just like how …

No Nonsense Newbie Tips: Question Particles 吗, 吧, 呢


One of the pure joys and enduring charms of spoken Chinese is the prevalence of “exclamatory particles”.  

These are one syllable, neutral tone words which slip off your tongue at the end of a sentence to add emphasis, soften or …