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u/sitefall · 18 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

No paid app/program/website suggestion is going to satisfy you. Things like ninchanese are designed for sales, and satisfying customers, not providing the best result. Studying is hard work, there's no escaping that. No manner of cute cat animation or ipad software is going to do better than traditional methods that beat the information into your head, paired with the motivation to study it.

The way it becomes more tolerable is for you to find some motivation to do it. If there's no stories you want to read, or friends you want to talk to, or teachers you want to impress, shows you want to watch, then you're going to have a slow, difficult time.

There's a near definitive grammar book in English that can answer all of the questions that even your Chinese teachers cannot. It's here

More beginner grammar rules that everyone should know are located here

There's graded readers you can check out which are very good called Chinese Breeze. Get the physical copies and they have audio CD's in multiple speeds. The back covers of the books have a paragraph that shows the difficulty of the book. If you can more or less read it, then it's maybe too easy, or just right. They cost like $6, and literally pennies if you buy them in China.

Put together an anki deck of your own with all your vocabulary. This software will help you manage it all. I started out with single words in a big anki deck, adding to it as I learned 10-20 words each week. Once the deck became over 2000 cards or so, I took a few days to go through the whole thing and turn them into sentences. Then I added new vocabulary in the form of sentences as I found them "in the wild" so to speak.

If you want to be able to write, you need to put pen to paper and write. As you review the anki deck, write it out each time as well. Yes it sucks. But it works. It sucks less if you're motivated to learn.

How do you get motivated to learn? Make friends. If you don't have any Mandarin speaking friends, or put yourself into an environment where you "need" to speak, you won't. Someone else in the comments here mentioned "girls" and got downvoted into oblivion. But I don't think anyone can deny that it's not a good form of motivation to learn. If you go out seeking a partner based on language, well, that's a different problem not suitable for addressing here. But the idea is sound, make good friends with common interests. You play the drums? Great, meet other people that play the drums. Join a local meetup. Volunteer at some Mandarin Language event or community center.

Language partners are valuable. I've talked to maybe 200 or more people that I met on sites like this which I highly recommend. Most of them, I spoke with once, and never again. A handful lasted a few weeks of regular talk/study. 4 or 5 of them turned out to be amazing people, teachers, friends. After making 2 very long term friends through that site, my skill level improved drastically. But overall, I learned something valuable from everyone, save for the odd student trying to get a good toefl score and just looking for a free English teacher.

u/elizabitchg · 4 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Hey! I’m also 16, I’ve been learning Chinese for 3 years now and I absolutely love it!!!

Don’t know much about online courses, I was lucky enough to take it at my high school. We don’t usually use our chinese books, but if you want to start there, the type we sometimes go off from is Integrated Chinese: Simplified Characters Textbook, Level 1, Part 1 (English and Chinese Edition) but man, that price is ridiculous! I’m sure you can find some better ones at a book resale shop or even a local goodwill, I’ve found plenty of good chinese language related items at Goodwill’s near me, whether it be movies, informational stuff, or made for learning. It just depends on what you find, sometimes you can get stumble across some real treasures!

Sorry to go so far off topic, but yeah, my advice would be to start with whatever cheapest learning book you can find and then see how you like it. But I also can’t stand learning things on a computer, so that could also be personal preference. Sorry I’m not much of help!

I do like the site FluentU a lot, they post lots of helpful videos and I believe that have many more learning tools you can utilize!

Here’s a link on their list of best textbooks and from there you can scour the site for whatever else you can find.

Best of luck, and you can do it! 加油!Oh! BTW, you should download the Pleco app, as there’s a quite large consensus among Chinese learners and teachers alike, all attesting to the notion that it does wonders. It’s literally my Chinese Bible—as in, it is a Chinese dictionary. Much better than Google Translate, (although Translate can also be useful when used the right way and not as a crutch) and Pleco also gives helpful context clues and sentence examples to make things make more sense.

u/vigernere1 · 3 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

>I was thinking of making an Anki deck with grammar points and practicing making sentences from that, but

At the bottom of this message is a copy/paste from a prior post. It's general advice, perhaps you'll find it helpful. In regards to your specific question:

  • I agree, reviewing dozens grammar patterns in Anki will quickly get boring.
  • The most important grammar patterns are are those you see/hear/read every day. It's more useful to learn those patterns really well rather than developing a broad but shallow understanding ones you'll rarely hear or use. (Note: as a student you may have to review more patterns than helpful because you will be tested on them).
  • Building on the prior point, the patterns you review should be sourced from the media you consume and the conversations you have.

    One thing you can try is keeping a journal. It's a great way to reinforce grammar and it's more holistic than writing practice sentences in isolation. You don't need to write much nor be especially creative. Each day pick one pattern and build a short paragraph around it. Spend no more than 10-15 minutes doing this. The following day, before you write, take a moment to review the prior day(s) writings/patterns. If possible, share your journal with a native speaking friend and ask them to provide feedback using the shared document's "comments" function. (Keep the comments as a record and do not "resolve" them). Do not edit your original text; you want to keep it as a record as well. (Any edits your partner wants to make can be added in-line as new text (in a different color), or in a separate paragraph. I find it easier to make quick comparisons with this method than using a red line/mark up function).

    Finally, here is a list of grammar resources that might help you:

    Appropriate for Beginning Learners

  • [Allset Learning Grammar Wiki] (
  • Modern Mandarin Chinese Grammar: A Practical Guide
  • Basic Patterns of Chinese Grammar
  • Schuam's Outlines of Chinese Grammar

    Appropriate for Intermediate or Advanced Learners

  • An A to Z Grammar for Chinese Language Learners, (traditional only) ISBN 9789570851069
  • Common Chinese Patterns 330
  • A Guide to Proper Usage of Spoken Chinese
  • Error Analysis of 900 Sample Sentences
  • A Learn's Handbook of Modern Chinese Written Expressions


    Repetition is the key to success, specifically: 1) high volume, 2) varied, 3) contextual, 4) mutual reinforcing, 5) enjoyable.

  • Varied: learning/using grammar and vocabulary through different topics and mediums
  • Contextual: not learning vocabulary/grammar in isolation
  • Mutual reinforcing: learning activities that reinforce and/or build upon each other
  • Enjoyable: liking the topic and methods through which you are learning it

u/warpzero · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

It's not the 214 Kanxi radicals per-se, but for my first 1500 characters I used method in the book Remembering Traditional Hanzi. There's also a Simplified version of the book. I find this method makes it really easy to memorize characters (well enough to write them), but actually one of the biggest benefits of the book I found was the order in which the characters are presented, making them even easier to remember.

Beyond that, if you really just want to memorize the 214 Kanxi radicals, I'd recommend using SRS flashcards like Mnemosyne or Anki. You can use these to memorize anything. Before I moved to Taiwan for instance, I compiled a list of all of the street names in all of Taipei and used Mnemosyne flashcards to memorize them all. It was unbelievably useful to make it easier to remember addresses and to speak to Taxi drivers while I was there.

There are lots of flashcard decks for the Kangxi radicals. Here's one I found with a very quick Google search. I'm sure there are others. Good luck!

u/amilliontomatoes · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

Thanks! I'm living in the UK at the moment, and about to move to a new city. I think i'll be able to find some chinese students there (it has two universities), so this should really be useful in practicing my mandarin!

Someone earlier recommended this book

I've been reading the sample version on amazon, and it seems to have a very well-thought out approach to learning chinese symbols; basically showing you the basics first (sun, mouth, companian, old, etc.) and then suggesting how they might alter the meaning of symbols when they form part of a symbol. Then it builds on chapter on chapter. It also comes with neat little stories! Is this the kind of thing you were suggesting?

And your general advice on writing chinese is very good! Once i've nailed a few basic phrases and greetings, i'll give the webchat one a go!

My plan of action is currently to take a listening course. Chinesepod seems to be the one that comes highly recommended, whilst at the same time working my way through the book of characters I posted earlier, and trying to find chinese friends to talk to!

In january I hope to start a proper chinese course at a local college.

Does this sound like a reasonable aim?

Thanks so much for your help. I have been quite overwhelmed by the level of enthusiasm and commitment on this subreddit!

u/Thoo-tau-lin · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I'm not sure specifically how tofu learn works as I didn't want to sign up just to see it, but what helped me immensely in the beginning stages of learning characters was learning by component instead of frequency. Learning character components is like learning the alphabet for English. There are about 200 components that make up Chinese characters, and once you start recognizing the constituent components, it gets easier and easier to remember characters. So 想 = 木+目+心 instead of a bunch of random strokes that have no meaning to you.


This website (ninchanese) seems like a good intro to things based on a quick google search. I personally used the James Heisig books when I started as I think it's the most systematic approach to the idea of learning by components that I've seen. I learned 15-30 characters a day during my lunch breaks at work and after a few months the whole Chinese writing system was demystified and I knew around 3000 characters. After that it's just a buttload of reading to get used to seeing everything in context, just as with any language.


There are other books out there nowadays, too. This one by Hoenig seems good.


All this is to say that I personally think a lot of time and frustration can be saved by learning one's first 1500 characters in a logical manner based on the character components instead of trying to memorize things based on frequency. Like, what's the point of learning 你 before 人 & 小? Or 我 before 手 & 戈?


Anyway, I hope this was slightly helpful! Good luck, and let me know if you have any questions?

u/fanuchman · 4 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I don't think a textbook is essential in the later stages of learning Chinese (say, past intermediate) but I do think it is essential for the begginer and early intermediate stages to have some structure. Some might disagree with me, but this is my opinion. I recommend the Integrated Chinese series because that's what I used for my first three Chinese classes and it teaches you the most important radicals before moving on to the first chapter. By learning the most important radicals first you will recognize them in the characters you learn and it will improve your reading and writing too. I'm sure you can find it on Amazon. For an alternative textbook, you could try the HSK textbooks like this one below, which will help you prepare for the 汉语水平考试 or HSK. However, if you are planning to go to Taiwan then I recommend preparing for the TOCFL, the Test of Chinese as a Foreign Language. I'm currently preparing for HSK 5 and using their HSK 5 book. If you have any other questions please let me know!

u/Hazachu · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Take the academic route. Start by purchasing or pirating Integrated Chinese (from what I understand it is by far the most popular chinese textbook) and the equivalent workbook if you'd like.

Use this site's vocab and definitions (they correspond with the vocab in the book but provide more accurate definitions). The rest of the site is actually also pretty useful for learning grammar and practicing reading, listening, and pronunciation.

Then learn how to use quizlet's 3 way flash card option for Chinese (its really poorly implemented but it does work, allows you to study character->definition or character->pinyin and vice versa). If you're curious how the quizlet feature works (its really poorly explained online) it requires you to make a set with one side set to chinese the other to english, on the chinese side have the character/word you want, on the english side have the definition and the pinyin within parentheses (if you have any other parenthses it will screw up and break the whole set, so I use brackets when I want to clarify definitions)

For example the chinese card would read: 水

the english card would read: water (shuǐ)

here's a template for further clarity

Also is the best site for stroke order and audio

In terms of vocabulary this combo of resources is working really well for me, I'm currently in a 6 hour a week chinese class but all the vocab learning I do at home and this is how. This so far has allowed me to recognize any character I've learned in the past, but if you want to have it solid enough that you can always write any character from memory you might want to make your own anki and update it as you learn new words since you'll end up forgetting how to write some of the lesser used characters if you don't.

As far as grammar it'll be tough on your own but you can do it from Integrated Chinese and other online resources.

u/shuishou · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I can't stress enough how great Chinese Demystified is! And basically the whole Demystiffied series is great. I found this to be one of the absolute best Chinese grammar books! I highly recommend it! Also try Basic Written Chinese which is a textbook, plus there is a workbook, which may or may not be needed, I'm not sure. There is also Basic Spoken Chinese as well which is the same.

u/imral · 18 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

The best way to learn to read handwritten Chinese is to learn to write handwritten Chinese.

This book is an old but good introduction in English.

If you are comfortable with Chinese only text, then I'd recommend this book, which is far more comprehensive.

You don't actually have to remember how to write the characters long-term, just go through all the exercises in those books and you'll find you'll then be able to read most handwriting without too much difficulty.

u/anchor68 · 3 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I also bought this book when I first started to learn, called Chinese Cursive Script: An Introduction to Handwriting in Chinese, by Fred Fang-yu Wang (non-affiliate Amazon link here). It's super old-school--it looks like a mimeograph and was written in 1958. If I remember correctly, it only includes traditional characters because of the date it was published. Regardless, many simplified/trad. characters look the same when written in cursive anyways. But it has great tips, and just helps you learn to read handwriting better anyways. I still have the book at home and I've been learning for 10 years.

u/suibian · 4 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

short stories! We're reading this in my 4th yr Chinese class now:

Starting with bilingual editions can be pretty helpful, too. I read this over the summer and found it to be very useful for me:
Being able to glance over at the English now and then made it easier for me to puzzle out certain sentence structures that I wouldn't have been able to figure out on my own.

You should really just start reading anything . . . no matter what you pick up you're going to have to look up characters, but you're definitely going to learn something. I've been studying Chinese for four years and I started reading Xi You Ji for my senior thesis this year and I find it pretty doable, way more doable than I expected.

u/agelastic · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

It's always useful to go through some book that discusses translation between your source and destination languages. I recently saw this one - not a recommendation, just a random example. Note it is written for English speakers - practically all good translators translate from their second language to their native one.

Heck, I'm Russian myself, and am reasonably OK with English (bar a noticeable accent). I'd never even try to translate, say, Master and Margarita. Dickens, on the other hand - easily ;)

u/kaisersozeyo · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

still pretty early, but at the end of my first year we had to read the lady in the painting ( ) which is probably the best you'll find at your level. helped me a lot, took some work but definitely worth the time.

u/SsaengQBellyMangchi · 3 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Here is one approach to learning handwritten Chinese. And here is another resource, a book in Chinese about how to learn handwritten Chinese, and Amazon has something that appears to be similar. According to another Reddit post, " You can find a "preview" using a clever google search (add .pdf to its name). " One more book that may be helpful is the book from Yale UP on cursive Chinese.

Think of it like English, there are a handful of forms that are more or less standard. But everyone comes up with their own way of writing quickly, some closer to those "standards," others a bit farther away. But if an individual's writing gets too far away fromt the standard, then nobody can read's like that. u/Luomulanren seems to be saying printed fonts and hand-written scripts naturally don't look the same, including variances like the "a" that you pointed out, as well as ornamental loops and how the letters are connected together.

u/choosymothers · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

You can check this out:

It's mostly a glossary of internet terms, but there's a few commonly used slang words. Additionally, there's a book called Niubi! which one of my Chinese friends is letting me borrow. It's pretty comprehensive, it provides history for the slang, and it even tells you whether a term is region-specific.

u/tapkap · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

This is the textbook I had in college, and seems to be what many universities in the USA use. If you get more, be care as there are textbooks and workbooks with similar covers for the various levels. The books were useful enough for me that I would recommend them. If you're only self teaching, then you could probably save your money and only get the textbooks.

u/Techtronic · 5 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Go to, they have an application that can show you the correct stroke order.
Something that you need to understand, though, is that even if you make your handwriting look exactly like the printed font, that's going to be considered "bad" by most natives. It'll be kind of equivalent to what a 2nd graders handwriting in English looks like. What you (probably) want to work towards is being able to read/write handwritten characters (which is in fact a totally different skill than being able to read printed font).

This book is generally considered the best for teaching that skill. You'll learn how to make your characters look like an adult wrote them, and you'll learn to read handwritten characters instead of just printed font.

u/CrimsonLiquid · 5 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

There's also an Integrated Chinese series of textbooks. They're used in my college classes. I'm just a beginner too but they seem pretty solid. Link. There's also this. Not sure what the difference is in this version and the reviews aren't as good, but I found these books the best when I first started.

u/WizardOfWisdom · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I used this series in school: They're pretty good books with very reasonably lengthed and fluid sections. The only thing I suggest is supplementing the grammar with some crosschecks online. I didn't find their explanations for 了 usage to be adequate, for example. But, they're pretty cheap and you can add on the workbooks if you want to do guided writing exercises. There is also a Traditional version if you want that instead.

u/menevets · 3 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

These books are more geared towards writing, but one of the side benefits of learning to write is it improves your cursive reading skills.

Download a bunch of handwritten fonts. They are out there. Take a segment you can read in a regular font and see what they look like in the HW fonts.

Try writing in semi cursive w/o lifting off paper and you'll understand why some words are written the way they are.

u/tonde · 4 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I bought this book called Niubi! a few years ago. It covers most stuff from everyday slang to internet lingo and obscure profanity.

The book provides both hanzi and pinyin for all the words, but the words are just explained in English and have no example sentences. I thought it was worth the money (it's pretty cheap), but maybe more as a fun book to skim through than for serious studying.

u/Zizzle_App · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

Heisig is awesome!

Personally I like Hoenig even better: They have shorter mnemonics and I think the overall organization of the book is better.

And then there is Matthews. They have even solved the problem with pronunciation! The problem with Matthews is that they only have around 800 characters though. So not really comprehensive...

u/Kos__ · 5 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

This one

I got the bundle which was HSK1&2, and a practice workbook all for like $25. It’s a great deal. I recommend doing it in pencil so you can erase and reuse the practice areas.

u/Meteorsw4rm · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I've found this book to be pretty helpful

It's intended for western students of Chinese who want to learn to write like an adult, and was originally written for the army.

u/yngwin · 5 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

> I do a lot of business with Chinese companies

Simplified (if you mean companies in Mainland China / PRC)

> Guangzhou


> studying the basics


> eventually taking the HSK


> Which one is most widely used in society?


See, I have made it simple for you! ;-)

But seriously, the overwhelming majority of Chinese people use Simplified, and because of that even people who use Traditional will be able to read Simplified. Unless you have an almost exclusive focus on Hong Kong, Taiwan and expat communities in the West, it is much more useful to study Simplified.

By the way, I recommend Matthews & Matthews' Learning Chinese Characters. It is based on the famous Heisig method, but adds memorization hints for pronunciation.

Also read this:

Good luck!

u/[deleted] · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Remember that writing of any language is essentially just a recording of the spoken language; also, in Chinese, most content words are two or more characters, so by just knowing the meanings of individual characters, you can't understand written Chinese.

Also, I've found personally that it's very hard to properly learn the pronunciation (especially tones) unless you actually hear and speak the words.

Somebody here has already mentioned the book Remembering Simplified Hanzi (and its counterpart "Remembering Traditional Hanzi"), which is very interesting -- its approach is to learn the basic meanings of the characters and how to write them first through through mnemonics -- I think it's a good idea. And fun. But not really necessary.

u/jamessfoster · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I haven't used it extensively, but every time I've looked through it I've been very impressed by the quality of the Integrated Chinese textbook. It has LookInside on Amazon, so you can check whether it's suitable for you.

Also, have you considered joining a class in your area?

u/mc1012can · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

You should use writing guides to help you. That’s how we learn to write. Here’s a link to an amazon page for that. You don’t have to get this one, just try to find the ones that have step by step guides on them. Remember to use pencils so that you can use them for multiple times. Learning Mandarin Chinese Characters Volume 1: The Quick and Easy Way to Learn Chinese Characters! (HSK Level 1 & AP Exam Prep)

u/zhouhaochen · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Heisig is a pretty good book if you only want to learn characters and he has a simplified and traditional version.

u/sasha_says · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I learned in college but we started with simplified story books that had glossaries of new characters at the end of each chapter like this one.

For more advanced reading/vocabulary I found the research paper assignments to be the most helpful. If you read multiple sources on one topic they tend to use similar vocabulary and phrases which helped me to remember them. Writing up a report forced me to learn the context and writing structure around the basic facts and phrases.

u/LokianEule · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

The Chinese Grammar Wiki is pretty kickass. You can also buy this book which I own and i think is good:

u/Indrial1 · 5 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

It's not as hard as it might seem- If you just start you'll notice that each character is just composed out of other characters; therefore the more you know; the easier you can learn vocabulary.

For example the character , ("pi" -> "Alcohol") which is composed of 口 (="Mouth" on the left side; indicating the meaning - something to drink) and 卑 ("bi" on the right side; indicating pronounciation) -

There are plenty of good books;

This is the one I use


u/goaway3000 · 10 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

This is a terrific question.

No, there is no name for this phenomenon in Chinese; at least, none that is stronger than 韵律, 'prosody.' But in Chinese, prosody leaks into grammar: 五言 and 七言 rhythms are so strongly embedded as to affect even ticket-sellers' calls -- "农科站-没票买票!" (That's pure 七言!)

More to your question, you'll find that extendable verbs -- e.g. 坐 and 乘坐 -- are never longer, but often shorter, than their objects. That is, you can't 乘坐车, but you can 坐公交车, and you can also 坐车.

The short answer is that rhythm is a part of Chinese grammar.

If you want to learn a lot about this subject, the book is An Anatomy of Chinese: Rhythm, Metaphor, Politics by Perry Link. Hope this points you on a road that can answer your question thoroughly!

u/trip_this_way · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

Niubi has proved to be fairly helpful in knowing a lot of general slang. It is a few years old, so it won't have a lot of the very recent stuff, but a lot of the terms used in the book are still used a fair amount in the right situations, and aren't restricted to flash slang that comes up on the internet and fades away rather quickly.

u/lucidicblur · 4 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I purchased both of these books from the Foreign Language Bookstore in Wangfujing in Beijing. They were the only sentence pattern books they had at the time.

u/Concise_Pirate · 7 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

In other words you're illiterate. :-)

I like this book.

u/michaelscarnish · 8 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I'm currently reading this book, A Learners' Handbook of Chinese Written Expressions, which covers 书面语 ("book language") words and grammatical points. It appears to be available only as a Kindle book now. I would only recommend this book to intermediate to advanced learners.

Here's a random sentence from the book:

9.4.4 殊 (quite)


It was quite unexpected that the Chinese team could make such an achievement.

u/denimisbackagain · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I would recommend this one. Amazon ships to Europe, right?

u/Chattery · 3 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

A listen-and-repeat package.

I've done five lessons, and the repetition is good, especially considering the four tones.

As for your mandarin-to-english dictionary, this is a beginner, and here's a fully-fledged dictionary. But have a look around and do "window shopping" as not every product will suit everybody's needs.

u/coldminnesotan · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I'd start with memrise. Memrise has four courses on Hakka. I browsed them all, and this one looks like the only one worth your time:

There's one Hakka T.V. station, Hakka TV: It's worth watching just to get the sound of the language down.

If you have money, definitely try to find a tutor online. I searched for "Hakka" in iTalki and got nothing, but you could probably put an ad out or find a friend-of-family or something.

If I understand it right, Hakka is usually written in Chinese characters. Heisig's books teach you how to read Chinese without learning how to talk in Chinese, so they may of may not be worth your time:

u/FruitFarmer2 · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

He really ought to have mentioned that their actually is a fast and easy way to learn characters

u/Spaztic_monkey · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

Yes there are official hsk textbooks and workbooks. HSK Standard Course 1 - Textbook

u/colorless_green_idea · 3 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

The Lady in the Painting is a short book written from 300 of the most basic characters. The end of each chapter has a short explanation of some vocabulary and sentence patterns.

u/PALillie · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

I have this it's a bit beyond me at the moment but it's Chinese on the left and the text in English on the right

u/toolboks · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

Sorry. It’s an English to Chinese textbook. Has levels introduction and up. It’s called integrated Chinese in English.

There’s a link.

u/ChinaFunn · 2 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

I started with this. No regrets choosing this as my starting point. Would recommend.

u/whiteskwirl2 · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

If you want common patterns, check out Common Chinese Patterns. Might be difficult for a beginner, though.

u/TimofeyPnin · 1 pointr/ChineseLanguage

Nobody here's giving you good advice, except u/koreth. They may actually think that it's just people trying to write print forms and doing so quickly, but they're wrong, and will never be able to read handwriting. Especially when they say "memorize the stroke order," given that handwritten forms often use a different stroke order.

This book is your ticket to being awesome.

u/koreth · 4 pointsr/ChineseLanguage

This book helped me a bit:

But I'm still awful at it and end up asking native speakers to read handwritten things to me.

To be fair, my horrible English handwriting is probably just as indecipherable to them.