Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Methods to pronounce accurate tones when speaking Mandarin


In addition to 21 consonants and 16 vowels combined or standing alone to create a sound, there are also 5 tones to match with each sound to pronounce Chinese characters. 

Some may be confused whether they pronounce the tones accurately, since there is no such thing as tone in speaking English. 

Here is the method applied in our classroom to help the students pronounce the five tones accurately. This method is also often used by little native mandarin speakers while learning to pronounce Chinese characters in school. So, here is the method:

1st tone: It is a high pitch tone. When you pronounce it, put your head still, look straight to pronounce it out, that’s how you can have the first tone.

2nd tone: It is a rising tone. Rise your head while pronouncing it, that’s how you can have the second tone.

3rd tone: It is falling and rising tone, so nod your head while pronouncing it.

4th tone: It is falling tone, so put your head down as you pronounce it.

Hope the methods help! Or if you have any other better methods, please share with us!

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