Dialogue

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

Introduction
Eric: Welcome to 3-Minute Chinese Season 1, Lesson 17 - Why? In this lesson, you’ll learn how to ask and answer the question ‘why’ in Chinese.
Body
Eric: Here's the formal way to ask 'Why are you late?' in Chinese.
Cho: [Normal] 你为什么迟到?(nǐ wèishénme chídào ?)
Eric: First is a pronoun meaning 'you'
Cho: [Normal] 你 [Slow] 你 (nǐ)
Eric: Next is the pronoun meaning 'why'
Cho: [Normal] 为什么 [Slow] 为什么(wèishénme)
Eric: Last is the verb meaning 'be late'
Cho: [Normal] 迟到 [Slow] 迟到(chídào)
Eric: Listen again to the formal question meaning 'Why are you late?'
Cho: [Slow] 你为什么迟到? [Normal] 你为什么迟到?
Eric: Now, imagine you're speaking to a stranger. Here's the formal way to say, 'I missed the train.'
Cho: [Normal] 我没赶上火车。(Wǒ méi gǎnshàng huǒchē .)
Eric: First is a pronoun meaning 'I'
Cho: [Normal] 我 [Slow] 我 (wǒ)
Eric: Next is the adverb meaning 'not'
Cho: [Normal] 没 [Slow] 没(méi)
Eric: Next is the verb meaning 'catch up'
Cho: [Normal] 赶上 [Slow] 赶上(gǎnshàng)
Eric: Last is the noun meaning 'train'
Cho: [Normal] 火车 [Slow] 火车(huǒchē)
Eric: Listen again to the formal response meaning 'I missed the train.'
Cho: [Slow] 我没赶上火车。 [Normal] 我没赶上火车。
Eric: Here's a question meaning 'Why do you leave so early?'
Cho: [Normal] 你为什么那么早走?(nǐ wèishénme nàme zǎo zǒu ?)
Eric: First is a pronoun meaning 'you'
Cho: [Normal] 你 [Slow] 你(nǐ)
Eric: Next is the pronoun meaning 'why'
Cho: [Normal] 为什么 [Slow] 为什么(wèishénme)
Eric: Next is the adverb meaning 'so'
Cho: [Normal] 那么 [Slow] 那么(nàme)
Eric: Next is the adjective meaning 'early'
Cho: [Normal] 早 [Slow] 早(zǎo)
Eric: Last is the verb meaning 'to leave'
Cho: [Normal] 走 [Slow] 走(zǒu)
Eric: Listen again to the question, 'Why do you leave so early?'
Cho: [Slow] 你为什么那么早走? [Normal] 你为什么那么早走?
Eric: Here's a response meaning, 'In order to catch the train.'
Cho: [Normal] 为了赶火车。(wèile gǎn huǒchē .)
Eric: First is a preposition meaning 'for'
Cho: [Normal] 为了 [Slow] 为了(wèile)
Eric: Next is the verb meaning 'catch up'
Cho: [Normal] 赶 [Slow] 赶(gǎn)
Eric: Last is the noun meaning 'train'
Cho: [Normal] 火车 [Slow] 火车(huǒchē)
Eric: Listen again to the response, 'In order to catch the train.'
Cho: [Slow] 为了赶火车。 [Normal] 为了赶火车。
Cultural Insight
Eric: Now it's time for a quick cultural insight.
Cho: Because we’ve learned how to say both “why” and “not” in Chinese, you might think you know how to say “Why not?” as well, right? Well, technically it can be Wèishénme bù? But that’s actually not natural Chinese. Although it makes sense, people don’t usually say it, and will say something different depending on the situation. So just remember to be careful about using it!

Outro

Eric: And that’s all for this lesson. Don’t forget to check out the lesson notes, and we’ll see you in the next lesson!
Cho: 再见

10 Comments

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😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

ChineseClass101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Listeners! Why are you studying Chinese?

ChineseClass101.com Verified
Tuesday at 01:53 PM
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Hello Byron,


Thank you for your comment. 赶 means to catch up, 上 is a result complement indicating the result or outcome of the action, i.e. being able to catch up the train.


If you have any questions, please let us know.


Ngai

Team ChineseClass101.com

Byron
Sunday at 04:27 AM
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What is the difference between 赶 and 赶上?

ChineseClass101.com Verified
Tuesday at 08:15 PM
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Hello robert groulx,


Thank you for your comment. We hope you enjoy the lessons.


If you have any questions, please let us know.


Ngai Lam

Team ChineseClass101.com

robert groulx
Sunday at 12:08 AM
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thank you forv the lesson transcript


赶(gǎn)v Last is the noun meaning 'train'


robert

ChineseClass101.com Verified
Friday at 05:10 PM
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Hi Eva-Britt,


Thank you for taking your time to leave us a comment. It's a very good question ?

我没赶上火车。 (Wǒ méi gǎnshàng huǒchē.) I missed the train.

To use 不(bù) instead of 没(méi), we have to change the structure a tiny bit, and there's a subtle nuance in the meaning:

我赶不上火车。 (Wǒ gǎnbùshàng huǒchē.) I didn't catch the train in time.


Looking forward to seeing you often here.


Olivia

Team ChineseClass101.com

Eva-Britt
Saturday at 06:22 PM
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Hi! In the sentence "I missed the bus", would it be possible to use 'bu' instead of 'mei'?

ChineseClass101.com Verified
Thursday at 09:27 PM
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Hi, Efrem,


You are amazing!


Cho

Team ChineseClass101.com

Efrem
Monday at 09:04 AM
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因为我可以学习文化,和不同的人说话。

Steven
Saturday at 05:33 AM
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Because it's awesome 因為中國畫師無邊功德