Fast Track Your Way to Learn Chinese Vocabulary (5 Popular Methods)

Fast Track Your Way to Learn Chinese Vocabulary (5 Popular Methods)

Chinese is the second most spoken language in the world after English. As China's economy is growing fast, learning Chinese can open doors of opportunities for foreigners. 

As many people know, Chinese is not an easy language to master, so preparing for the AP Chinese exam or the HSK test can be daunting. The major difference from an English perspective is that Chinese uses characters. In contrast, English uses alphabetical words, which results in learning Chinese vocabulary being an uphill battle for any Roman alphabet language user. 

If you can dedicate 5 minutes to learning Chinese, you can quickly learn Chinese words and sentence structure. We got you! Our 5 popular methods let you learn Chinese vocabulary fast, why they help you study fast, and how fast you can learn using these methods.

5 methods to learn Chinese vocabulary

5 popular methods to learn Chinese vocabulary

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1. Flashcards

These are one of the classic study tools to build and improve memory through practiced information retrieval. With the right flashcard features, it will promote active recall—consolidating the information into their long-term memory.

Flashcards can be either physical or digital. For learning Chinese, one side would be in Mandarin Chinese, while the other side would be written in pinyin or translation. For example, one side would be 你好, and the other side would be in nǐ hǎo or the English translation.

Thanks to its universal use, many beginners choose flashcards to start learning Mandarin words instead of reading lists of vocabulary from a book. That is not to say that is the wrong or correct way, but it is definitely a stepping stone for many to start memorizing Chinese characters.

Why do flashcards help you study Chinese vocabulary fast?

There's a famous saying, “Good things come in small packages,” which is true for your study.

For a language beginner, a bite-sized learning style is an approach that helps a learner to engage with the lesson to the fullest. The more you are involved in your study, the more you can learn. And that's how numerous beginners learn Chinese vocabulary fast by implementing this method. 

A pack of flashcards is handy, whether in paper or digital form. Whether it's basic Chinese words, Chinese idioms, or funny Chinese phrases, you can reach out to the source at any time and any place, thus making your study routine unbreakable. 

How fast can you learn Chinese with flashcards?

If you know the radicals, the building blocks of Chinese characters, you can learn over 100-200 basic Chinese vocabulary words in about two weeks—depending on your level of commitment.

Consider taking the HSK vocabulary test for beginners to find your current Chinese level or see if you are progressing. A beginner in Chinese knows 500 to 2245 Chinese characters.

Pandanese got you covered. You can learn more than 6,000 hanzi and vocabulary in a single year. Pandanese, the WaniKani for Chinese, was designed specifically for those who want to memorize Chinese characters, their pinyin, and their meaning. With fun mnemonic stories and the SRS system, you will master recognizing Chinese. If the pace needs to be faster, contact for help.

2. Youtube video channels  

Youtube, one of the largest video-sharing platforms, has millions of videos—including learning materials for learning Chinese.

From dedicated channels to funny skits to help you understand Chinese culture, Youtube is the best place to find grammar and cultural videos. No matter your level, you will always find something fun and interesting on Youtube.

Why do Youtube channels help you study Chinese vocabulary fast?

There's an estimate of a thousand free lessons for Chinese beginners. These will help you build a large wordbook and master it quickly. You can do research and find interesting topics, but here are a couple of channels to check out:

Additionally, these videos will showcase real-world speech and situations in Chinese. It'll take little effort to memorize when in context, but that's how beginners can study Chinese fast with zero stress

How fast can you learn Chinese with Youtube channels?

Beginners learning Chinese can watch a 50-to-100 video course, which often takes up to approximately three months—depending on the length of these videos.

Everyday Chinese and Learn Chinese with are popular channels among Chinese learners, with half-million subscribers on each channel.

3. Reading

According to one study, mental stimulation like reading can help protect memory and thinking skills, thus boosting your study process.

Some language learners believe that whoever starts learning a new language should build a long vocabulary list first. With this vocabulary, you can read books and understand what they mean.

As a beginner, reading in Mandarin can be very difficult and overwhelming. The best way to get started is with Chinese children's books as they are simpler phrases and lots of images.

Chinese books to read as a beginner

Bilingual Chinese Books for Kids that teach Chinese Culture, BilingualKidSpot

Why does reading help you study Chinese vocabulary fast?

Reading material can come in different forms. It can be something in Chinese on social media, a short online conversation, a short story from textbooks, or Wuxia novels. You can pick your favorite source and learn from that. 

If you're looking for digestible content, consider social media. Social media often has the most digestible content with a neat layout and attractive vocabulary. They're used daily, and you can add many to your vocabulary book.

How fast can you learn by reading?

Chinese language beginners who absorb one or two pieces of daily content need about six months to enhance their vocabulary list.

Chinese social media such as Tencent QQ and Weibo or Chinese chat forums have new content daily.

Master 6,000 Chinese words in less than a year? 🤯
Revolutionize your Chinese vocabulary with Pandanese's intuitive approaches to radicals, characters, and vocabulary.

4. Offline language class

Before technology, language classes and language centers were popular as they were the first choice for many learners.

Technology has significantly changed the game, but some learners prefer offline language classes over online technology.

Why does offline language class help you study Chinese vocabulary fast?

As a beginner in Chinese who wishes to learn vocabulary fast, there's nothing more rewarding than passing the HSK vocabulary test in only six months. Offline language classes can help you to get the job done. With personalized consultancy and a tailored program that meets the needs of each learner, you can reach your goal within the time given.

Everyone knows “practice makes perfect.” Some learners make the excuse that they fail to practice regularly due to the lack of environment and study partners. If you study in an offline language class, this problem evaporates, just like Captain Jack Sparrow once said: “The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem.”

How fast can you learn with offline language class?

Classes for beginners at language centers vary from six months to a year.

5. Online app/software 

The rise of technology grants people a greater capacity for what they can do. Learning a new language with an online app or software is no exception. Millions of learners worldwide have been using this method and making great progress, inspiring other learners to follow in their footsteps.

Why does an online app/software help you learn Chinese vocabulary fast?

When you use an app, you can set a goal and personalize your lessons. This way, beginners have full control over their learning path, thus making them learn as much vocabulary as possible in a defined time.

Apps always feature metrics to calculate your learning progress. Thanks to this, beginners know where they are in their learning journey and how they can learn vocabulary faster.

How fast can you learn with an online app?

A beginner's personalized plan often ranges from 6 months to a year, either with a 5-minute or 20-minute lesson daily.

Chinese language app, which implements the neuroscience-based Spaced Repetition System algorithm, prompts you to review radicals, characters, and vocabulary at specific times to maximize retention.

In closing

There are various effective methods to learn Chinese vocabulary words. Finding the right approach that suits your learning style and allows you to memorize these characters quickly can fast-track your language journey.

Try a combination of these methods, and you'll be on your way to mastering Chinese.

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Learn over 6,000 Hanzi with Pandanese’s Chinese characters flashcards with our easy mnemonic stories and SRS system to build your Chinese vocabulary.

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