Rapid Literacy in Chinese for Beginners

Posted By: vidra
Rapid Literacy in Chinese for Beginners

Rapid Literacy in Chinese. For Beginners
PDF | ~178 MB | 150 pages | by Zhang Pengpeng | 话语教学出版社 (Sinolingua Press) | 2002 | ISBN: 780052695X

Customer review from

This book teaches reading comprehension of 750 Chinese characters in a minimum amount of time. It starts from scratch - no prior knowlege of Chinese characters is assumed. Most other books are just lists and lists of Chinese characters, that apparently you must stare at a sufficiently long for them to sink in. This book, however, is from the source - the Beijing Chinese Institute. The method here to teach "Rapid Literacy in Chinese" is near perfect - and appears to be something new. Let me describe: There are 25 chapters. Each chapter introduces a single sentence containing 30 new letters. You memorize each sentence, and practice the reading sections in each chapter, getting extensive use with the 30 characters of that chapter. By the time you finish 25 chapters, you can read 750 Chinese characters near fluently. The 25 core sentences are also listed on 2 summary pages, and can be read through quickly for an entire review of the 750 characters (something you should want to do frequently). Additionally, the 750 characters are listed in alphabetical order on a page by themselves, for quick review. There is also an extensive dictionary of all terms and letter combinations learned in the many practice texts - the longest text being two full pages of Chinese containing all the letters you've been learning.

Review in Chinasprout:

This book is specially designed for non-Chinese students who want to learn Chinese. It uses a novel approach, in that it teaches characters and Pinyin pronunciations separately making learning easier and less bewildering for beginners. The book uses 750 commonly used Chinese characters and 1300 words formed from them to make 25 short sentences, 25 conversational dialogues and four narrative prose pieces. This is not only a valuable language learning resource, but an excellent opportunity to learn about Chinese culture since there is much to be learned from the Chinese characters the book details, along with their alluring charm and fascination.

Cf. also a very useful detailed review in China Daily:

I have recently purchased this book in China, and had obtained marvellous results with it: a student of mine has learned from scratch in two months - with about one hour of daily practicing - to read even texts far above beginner level (like homepages) with very few additional dictionary browsing. I can warmly recommend this to anyone who wants to begin to learn reading and writing Chinese.

This book teaches you both the traditional and the simplified forms of Chinese characters. To my experience, the best way to learn it is to memorize these 25 phrases both written and orally - dedicating about two days (one hour per day) to each -, and then beginning every new lesson by writing down once all the sentences you have mastered that far.

Download (40MB each):


Other good materials for learning Chinese (I do not include here the books linked to Avax from the excellent and is predecessor that are far above the level of "just learning", and are listed in their respective sites anyway. But I cannot miss to refer to that is, in my opinion, the best on-line Chinese course.) Where I do not indicate the uploader, it was me:

Colloquial Chinese. The complete course for beginners
Colloquial Cantonese. The complete course for beginners
Rapid Literacy in Chinese for Beginners
Teach Yourself: Beginner's Chinese Script
Dictionaries and translators:
Kingsoft Power Word 2006 Chine...Japanese dictionary collection
Dr. Eye 6.0 Chinese-English/Japanese Translation Software
Oxford Talking Chinese English Dictionary and Instant Translator (biotop)
Magic Translator v6.00.5777 Multilingual (Alexpal)

If anyone finds anything else, please post it, and I will include its url in my next post of materials for learning Chinese.