In the last post, I showed you How to say mom, dad and baby in Chinese?. In today’s lesson, the Chinese words I am teaching are older sister, younger sister, older brother, and younger brother.
In order to achieve a true language immersion, in later chapters I mix the words that were previously taught with new content, thus help you memorize them via repetition. For example, this chapter reviews the words we learned in last post and reinforces them via repetition and combination.
Here is a little bit language background for parents. In the English kinship system, age is not a criterion in distinguishing personal relationships or grouping kinship terms. The concepts of elder sibling or younger sibling cannot be expressed in a single word, but have to be formed by modifying/specifying the noun by a comparative adjective, such as older or younger.
Therefore, sisters are just that, sisters. There isn’t a different word for the younger sister vs. older sister. Neither is there a different word for younger brother vs. older brother.
In the Chinese language, age is a very important factor in the organization of the family. The senior-junior order is considered honorable and respectful. The Chinese words for older sister and younger sister are completely different in pronunciation and writing: jiejie is for older sister, and meimei, younger sister. Similarly, brother translates as gege, older brother, or didi, younger brother.
If you have more than one child at home, encourage them to learn these words together so that they can practice learning with each other.
Are you ready? Let us begin!
Watch PPT presentation for the complete lesson. Due to the size of the program, content in the frame below may display blank. Simply refresh the current webpage or press F5 on your keyboard for the refresh function. (Please enable your computer audio and increase the speaker volume. You can hear the words when they are spoken and follow the sound track):
Click here to see the whole screen PPT presentation.
Or you can view the presentation in an interactive mode: Chinese Learning for Babies (Lesson 1-Family Members): how to say sister and brother in Chinese.
What do you think? Drop me your comments, ideas, suggestions or complains here, so that I can keep improving this program. I hope that you and your baby like this series and learn Chinese week by week, month by month, year by year.