Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Amber:
[......] and welcome to ChineseClass101.com. I am Amber.
Victor:
[....] I am Victor.
Amber:
This is our Absolute Beginners Series, Season 1, and this is Lesson 1. The lesson is about meeting people and it`s entitled "What`s your name?".
Victor:
[......]
Amber:
Yep. Very important high frequency for first meetings, of course.
Victor:
Yep. We start out a lesson to help you make friends right away.
Amber:
Yeah, and we going to teach you how to greet someone in Chinese.
Victor:
Yes, very important and very easy in Chinese actually. Also how to tell them your name, as well as asking theirs.
Amber:
That`s right. And this can be no small feat, you know, because Chinese names are really different than Western names.
Victor:
Right.
Amber:
So.. But we have this lesson, so there is no fear, you can understand it all by the end. So in this lesson you`ll learn how to greet someone and ask their name and tell them your name.
Victor:
This conversation takes place on a first meeting.
Amber:
Yes, and it`s between two strangers meeting for the first time. But before we listen to the conversation we just want to remind everybody about our website: ChineseClass101.com. You can go there and comment and ask questions.
Victor:
Yep.
Amber:
So it`s your first lesson you definitely can have some questions so make sure to come visit us there at the site and leave us a comment or question we will get back to you with the answers.
Victor:
[......]
Amber:
Yeah. Ok, for now let`s listen to the conversation.
DIALOGUES
A:
你好。
B:
你好,你叫什么名字?
A:
我叫张林。
B:
我叫王小芳。
English Host:
One more time, a little slower.
A:
你好。
B:
你好,你叫什么名字?
A:
我叫张林。
B:
我叫王小芳。
English Host:
One more time with the English.
A:
你好。
Amber:
Hello.
B:
你好,你叫什么名字?
Amber:
Hello, what's your name?
A:
我叫张林。
Amber:
I'm Zhang Lin.
B:
我叫王小芳。
Amber:
I'm Wang Xiaofang.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Amber:
So what is your Chinese name, Victor?
Victor:
[......].
Amber:
Sounds good, sounds very handsome.
Victor:
[.....] How about you Amber?
Amber:
I’m 字安.
Victor:
Oh, OK.
Amber:
It was specially chosen by my friend. Although I've changed it like 3 or 4 times. But it`s a fake name so I can do that.
Victor:
And of course everyone needs a Chinese name when they are learning Chinese. No ‘Ambers’ allowed! Right?
Amber:
[.....] But let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson first.
VOCAB LIST
Victor:
你好 [natural native speed]
Amber:
hello
Victor:
你好 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Victor:
你好 [natural native speed]
Next:
Victor:
你 [natural native speed]
Amber:
you
Victor:
你 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Victor:
你 [natural native speed]
Next:
Victor:
叫 [natural native speed]
Amber:
to call
Victor:
叫 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Victor:
叫 [natural native speed]
Next:
Victor:
甚麼 [natural native speed]
Amber:
what
Victor:
甚麼 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Victor:
甚麼 [natural native speed]
Next:
Victor:
名字 [natural native speed]
Amber:
name
Victor:
名字 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Victor:
名字 [natural native speed]
Next:
Victor:
我 [natural native speed]
Amber:
I, me
Victor:
我 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Victor:
我 [natural native speed]
KEY VOCAB AND PHRASES
Amber:
[.....]. Let's have a closer look at the usage for some of these words and phrases in the lesson today. So, well where else to start but at the very beginning. So that is our basic Chinese greeting or Chinese "hello", which is, of course, what we heard first in the dialog.
Victor:
你好. So, [Nǐ] is a third tone, [hǎo] is also third tone. But because of the tone change [......] you can hear [Nǐ] as a second tone. So 你好 and it means "you good".
Amber:
Yeah, I mean this greeting is really good, because it actually teaches us 2 words in one as [.........]
Victor:
Yes, 你 is the word for ‘you’and ‘好’ is the word for ‘good’.
Amber:
Great! So, I think it`s pretty sweet that in Chinese when you say "hello" you literally saying to the person‘you good’.
Victor:
‘you good’
Amber:
So, Victor, can you use this 你好 any time like indiscriminately with everyone?
Victor:
Yes, definitely you can use 你好 in pretty much any situation. [.....] one other version you may hear, which is for more formal settings.
Amber:
Ahh, like if you wanna show extra respect, maybe with an elderly person, or someone in authority?
Victor:
Exactly. And you would use the formal word for "you" which is almost the same as 你. It`s
您.
Amber:
您, which is actually second tone.
Victor:
Right.
Amber:
Amber:
So in a more formal setting you might hear ‘您好’ instead of ‘ni hao’.
Victor:
Exactly.
Amber:
And next, we hear the response to 你好, which is also 你好!
Victor:
Very easy. And next, what would be better to add than your name.
Amber:
Of course. So, in Chinese, to ask ‘what is your name’, literally translated it’s ‘you called what name’. Let’s hear it, Victor
Victor:
你叫什么名字。
Amber:
So right off, we hear the word again for ‘you’
Victor:
Amber:
Next comes the verb for ‘to call’.
Victor:
Amber:
So, so far ‘you called’ now for the ‘what name’ part
Victor:
The word in Chinese for ‘what’ is 什么
Amber:
Yes, this word will come in very handy. 什么. And, last but not least, the word for ‘name’
Victor:
名字
Amber:
name. 名字。
Victor:
Yes, and this can be your full name, or just your first name.
Amber:
Which brings us to the issue of Chinese names!
Victor:
Yes, much different than English names.
Amber:
And I won’t lie—it’s really hard to remember them! And so many sound the same to me!
Victor:
Yes, it may seem like that, but Chinese names are full of deep meaning. They are generally made up of a surname or family name, which is one Chinese character. Then a person’s given name will be made up of either one or two characters.
Amber:
And there is something else special, is that in Chinese, the surname comes first.
Victor:
Right, So let’s look at our dialogue to find out that is.
Amber:
So in the dialogue, in response to ‘你叫什么名字?” we hear
Victor:
我叫张林
Amber:
So let’s start at the beginning. Because we’ve learned the word for ‘you’
Victor:
你. And now we learn the word for ‘I’ or ‘me’… 我
Amber:
And next, we hear again our word for ‘to call’. So this time it’s ‘I’m called…’
Victor:
我叫
Amber:
and then our friend’s name, 张林.
Victor:
Yes, this friend has a 2 character name. First his surname, of course, 张. Then his given name, 林.
Amber:
Which quite a commonly heard surname for sure. Other common ones are ‘Li’, ‘chen’… perhaps you’ve heard some of them before, hmmm?!
Victor:
Yes, and our second character’s surname is also quite common. Her surname is王, which actually means ‘king’. Then her given name 小芳.
Amber:
Right, and to offer her name, she also simply says ‘我叫王小芳。
Victor:
So anytime you want to say your name, you simply can use this ‘wo jiao ____’
GRAMMAR POINT
Amber:
Now, speaking of ‘you’ and ‘I’ …. The pronouns I mean. I think we can mention a few more. We would be remiss in our duty if we didn’t tell you how to talk about everybody else! Not just yourselves!
Victor:
OK so we know the word for I or me is 我. For you its 你. Now here’s the great news… for he, she or it, it’s the same word
Amber:
Yes same word in pronunciation, but the written character is different. However this makes it very easy to be ambiguous.
Victor:
Now to make a pronoun plural, it’s really easy too. You just tack the word ‘们’ onto the end of the pronoun.
Amber:
So you take ‘我’, and to make it into ‘we, or us’ you just add 们…
Victor:
我们
Amber:
For you plural it’s 你们
Victor:
Yes and for them or they, 他们。
Amber:
It’s that easy!
Amber:
Now speaking of Chinese names, Victor, how do we get one?
Victor:
Well, this is an important point—you will need some Chinese help for this.
Amber:
Yes. Unless you want to end up with something that could draw smirks and even, perhaps, laughs.
Victor:
Yes, because Chinese names are very deep, and not just any character can be used in a name.
Amber:
Do they always have meaning?
Victor:
Not always—depends on your parents, what they want.
Amber:
Ah depends on if you have parents with deep literary minds.
Victor:
Or, parents with big ambitions for you.
Amber:
Ah that explains my friend whose name is ‘Money’ in Chinese.
Victor:
Exactly.
Amber:
What about our dialogue friends, Victor? Do their names mean anything?
Victor:
_________________
Amber:
OK, so you see how scary it could be if you don’t pick the right name! Who knows what you’ll end up being.
Victor:
Yes! So please get a Chinese friend to help.
Amber:
Otherwise you may end up with the equivalent of a name like ‘Dinosaur’ or ‘Raining’ in English. Like some of my English students in China.
Victor:
OK so we’ve learned some good stuff today!
Amber:
Let’s have a little review. What is our ‘hello’?
Victor:
Ni hao
Amber:
And, what is the word for ‘name’
Victor:
Mingzi
Amber:
How do you say, ‘What is your name?’
Victor:
你叫什么名字?
Amber:
OK and I’ll answer that
Victor:
Excellent, Zi An. And我叫_______。
Amber:
And that is your very first Absolute Beginner Chinese lesson!
Victor:
You’ve only just begun though!
Amber:
Yes, stay tuned for more. Here at ChineseClass101.com
Victor:
Until next time, zai jian!
Wrap-up
Amber:
That just about does it for today.
Amber:
Before we go, we want to tell you about a way to drastically improve your pronunciation.
Victor:
The voice recording tool...
Amber:
Yes, the voice recording tool in the premium learning center...
Victor:
Record your voice with a click of a button,
Amber:
and then play it back just as easily.
Victor:
So you record your voice, and then listen to it.
Amber:
Compare it to the native speakers...
Victor:
And adjust your pronunciation!
Amber:
This will help you improve your pronunciation fast!

Outro

Amber:
再见
Victor:
再见

2085 Comments

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ChineseClass101.com
Monday at 6:30 pm
Pinned Comment
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Let us know if you have any questions!

Kirsten
Thursday at 2:39 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

你好。
Hi, and thank you for this lesson. Could anyone help me find my name in Chinese? My name is Kirsten. I’ve seen suggestions for 克尔斯藤, but I’m not sure if it’s right.
谢谢!

Monday at 12:38 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hello, Sherifa,

Wish you a nice trip to China.
For Chinese people, we don’t know so many Sherifa, so there is no common Chinese name for you, but I think 谢丽芳(xiè lí fāng) should be a good name for you.
It really sounds like a Chinese name which also sounds like your name.
Besides, 谢 can be a surname, and 丽 means beautiful and 芳 means fragrance.

Cho
Team ChineseClass101.com

Monday at 12:18 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi, Joanna,

Glad to meet you.

Joanna in Chinese is 乔安娜(qiáo ān nà).
Of course for female. :smile:

Cho
Team ChineseClass101.com

Monday at 12:13 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi, CHIRAG,
Glad to meet you.
I think CHIRAG can be 奇拉格(qí lā gé) in Chinese.
It is a name for male. :wink:

Cho
Team ChineseClass101.com

Sunday at 11:37 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi, Shawn Shoptaugh,

Nice to meet you.
I think 肖恩 is just good for you.
It sounds close to your name, and is well known by Chinese people. :smile:

Cho
Team ChineseClass101.com

Sunday at 12:15 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi, Abdullah,

Glad to meet you.
Abdullah in Chinese is 阿布杜拉(ā bù dù lā). :smile:

Cho
Team ChineseClass101.com

Saturday at 3:51 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

hey my name is sherifa.i am going to China the coming year and I would appreciate a Chinese name.

Joanna
Wednesday at 1:45 pm
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I need a Chinese name 🤔

CHIRAG
Tuesday at 12:56 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

can u please tell my chinese name
my name is CHIRAG (MALE)
THANKS

Shawn Shoptaugh
Sunday at 3:11 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

你好!我 叫 肖恩。

Hello! My name is Shawn. I referenced Google, and came across Xiao-en to be a Chinese translation for my name. Is this correct to use?

你好! (Hello!)

你好!你 叫 什么 名字? (Hello! What is your name?)
我 叫 肖恩。 (My name is Shawn.)