Posts From Julie Axelsson

Attainment, Home and Away

It came and went as quickly as the build up from the western new year—that’s right, CNY as usual saw the largest annual migration, with Dongguan ranking 2nd emptiest city

新年快乐! Or, Happy New Year!

From semantics to celebrations to misinterpretations, language is more than just memorizing words and phrases—as we discover in this month’s reveal. Pushing past practical to philosophy, let’s take a look.

Catching the Mouse

What is the best method for learning Mandarin? Well, there isn’t one. But there are a number of options open to suit various levels, reasons for learning, and lifestyles. Ever

Guess What? Cantonese Rules, Too

It’s easy to forget that not far behind the most widely spoken Chinese language is the lovable Cantonese, of which most of us know of, and often hear, but are

For the Sake of Characters

In China, children begin their journey to understand mandarin’s complex writing system at a very young age. Are they sacrificing their childhood? Or is it worth it for their development?

Beware of Long Vacations

Mostly, this column has been about how grueling yet immensely fulfilling it is to study Mandarin. Not this time. Instead, Julie focuses on how taking a break can impact your

Here Comes The Much Dreaded HSK…

Most of us know about the HSK, but how many of us have actually taken it or are aiming to in the future? Our language enthusiast speaks of her qualms

A Foreign Correspondent’s Report

After leaving China for a trip, our language enthusiast discovered that even in Europe, there were to be plenty of encounters with the wonderful and complicated Mandarin. Having spent a

The Triple Challenge

The trials & tribulations of learning a foreign language can be overwhelming. With Mandarin’s intricate system of symbols, this means an essential trio with each new word. As a student

Why bother?

Learning a language takes time. But once you do, you can enjoy the perks, like conversing with locals, getting jokes, & taking pleasure from individual cultural expressions. For me, learning