Vocabulary (Review)

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Lesson Transcript

David: Welcome to chineseclass101. I am David.
Echo:大家好,我是 (Dàjiā hǎo, wǒ shì)Echo。
David: We are here with lesson 2 in series 1 of our elementary lessons for Mandarin Chinese. So
Echo:我们的初级第二课。(Wǒmen de chūjí dì èr kè.)
David: If you already have some Mandarin under your belt, join us. We are going to make it even better. We’ve got a dialogue here. It takes place in an office.
Echo: Office again办公室。(Bàngōngshì.)
David: Between two employees.
Echo:两个同事。(Liǎng gè tóngshì.)
David: And they are talking about when they can have time off. And if you come to China and you start working, there are almost no holidays.
Echo: Umm exactly.
David: So you will also want to know when do I get time off.
Echo: Yes.
David: So let’s go to the dialogue but before we go to the dialogue, Echo.
Echo: As always, before we do.
David: If you are not already a premium subscriber, what are you waiting for?
Echo: Yes.
David: We’ve got PDF transcripts, we’ve got voice recording tools. This is going to get you speaking Chinese faster than a traditional classroom will and at a much lower price point.
Echo: Yeah.
David: So do go and sign up. Let’s get on to the dialogue.
田森:你明天来上班吗? (TIÁN SĒN: Nǐ míngtiān lái shàngbān ma?)
Andy:你开玩笑呢?明天圣诞节。(Nǐ kāi wánxiào ne?Míngtiān Shèngdàn Jié。)
田森:嗯?今天不是星期一吗?(TIÁN SĒN: Ng?Jīntiān bù shì xīngqī yī ma?)
Andy:哦,我记错了,那就是后天。(O, wǒ jì cuò le,yīnggāi shì hòutiān。)
David: One more time slightly slower.
田森:你明天来上班吗?(TIÁN SĒN: Nǐ míngtiān lái shàngbān ma?)
Andy:你开玩笑呢?明天圣诞节。(Nǐ kāi wánxiào ne?Míngtiān Shèngdàn Jié。)
田森:嗯?今天不是星期一吗?(TIÁN SĒN: Ng?Jīntiān bù shì xīngqī yī ma?)
Andy:哦,我记错了,应该是后天。(O, wǒ jì cuò le,yīnggāi shì hòutiān。)
David: And now, with the English translation.
田森:你明天来上班吗?(TIÁN SĒN: Nǐ míngtiān lái shàngbān ma?)
Tian Sen: Are you coming to work tomorrow?
Andy:你开玩笑呢?明天圣诞节。(Nǐ kāi wánxiào ne?Míngtiān Shèngdàn Jié。)
Andy: Are you kidding? Tomorrow is Christmas.
田森:嗯?今天不是星期一吗?(TIÁN SĒN: Ng?Jīntiān bù shì xīngqī yī ma?)
Tian Sen: Huh? Today isn't Monday?
Andy:哦,我记错了,应该是后天。(O, wǒ jì cuò le,yīnggāi shì hòutiān。)
Andy: Oh, I got it wrong. It should be the day after tomorrow.
David: Let’s step right into it. The first word we want to highlight for you is
David: Yeah this means both to go to work as well as to start working.
Echo: Yes.
David: And we also have related words such as to go to school or to start studying.
David: To go to class.
David: The opposite of上 (Shàng) of course is
Echo:下 (Xià)
David: So to get off work becomes
Echo:下班。(Xiàbān.) That’s your best time more like.
David: If you are a student, you probably like to get out of class too.
David: The next thing we want to talk about is holidays. We had one great holiday here.
Echo:圣诞节。(Shèngdàn Jié.)
David: Yeah Christmas. My favorite holiday, Echo’s favorite holiday is
Echo:情人节。(Qíngrén jié.)
David: Really?
Echo: Of course.
David: Valentine’s Day.
Echo: Uhoo its romantic浪漫的。(Làngmàn de.)
David: A lot of Chinese people really like Chinese New Years too.
David:节 (Jié) Second tone there is really the giveaway.
Echo: Yeah.
David: It’s some kind of holiday. Another big one, thanksgiving.
Echo:感恩节。(Gǎn'ēn jié.)
David: And then there is also Easter.
Echo:复活节。(Fùhuó jié.)
David: Right and the meat and potatoes of our vocab section here is actually talking about times.
Echo: Yes.
David: In the dialogue, we have tomorrow
David: And we also have today
David: And we have the day after tomorrow.
David: Right. So there is a whole spectrum of dates here. We are going to go through them quickly. Let’s start with the day before yesterday.
David: Yesterday.
David: Today.
David: Tomorrow.
David: The day after tomorrow.
David: And Chinese is kind of special because you can say the day after the day after tomorrow.
David: Yeah and we’ve got the day before the day before yesterday.
David: Yeah the big yesterday. The big…
Echo: Just add大。(Dà.)
David: Yeah. It’s the big day after tomorrow,
Echo: 非常简单 (Fēicháng jiǎndān)
David: the big day before tomorrow yeah. It’s fun too. So let’s go on. We’ve got some great grammar points to make about time.

Lesson focus

David: We’ve got two grammar points in this lesson. Echo, what’s the first one?
Echo:你明天来上班吗?(Nǐ míngtiān lái shàngbān ma?)
David: Yeah that’s the first sentence in the dialogue and the really important and interesting bit is what?
Echo: It’s来 (Lái) between time word and上班。(Shàngbān.)
David: Now the time word obviously it seemed to go with the beginning of the sentence either right at the beginning or following the subject here.
Echo: Good.
David: Then we have来 (Lái) and then we have the verb. In this case, to start work.
Echo: Yes.你明天来上班吗?(Nǐ míngtiān lái shàngbān ma?)
David: Really this could be any verb. Right, you could say I came to study.
Echo:我来学习。(Wǒ lái xuéxí.)
David: Or I came to play the piano.
Echo:我来弹钢琴。(Wǒ lái dàn gāngqín.)
David: I came to solve the problem.
Echo:我来解决问题。(Wǒ lái jiějué wèntí.)
David: And sometimes, you are going to want to be a bit more specific and say where you are going. I came to the office to work.
Echo:我来办公室工作。(Wǒ lái bàngōngshì gōngzuò.)
David: I came to America to be an actor.
Echo:我来美国当演员。(Wǒ lái měiguó dāng yǎnyuán.)
David: Right and in those examples, we are going to put the destination between
David: And the verb that we are using. Easy stuff.
Echo: Yes.
David: Our second point isn’t actually so easy. It’s a special case to something we learned about earlier but it’s so common. We want to point it out now.
Echo: Yes.
David: Earlier on, we taught you that
David: Is a verb, it’s – technically it’s called a copula and it’s really big equal sign and so we can have a very simple sentence which is two things joined by this equal sign. Tomorrow is Christmas.
Echo:明天是圣诞节。(Míngtiān shì shèngdàn jié.)
David: Today is my birthday.
Echo:今天是我的生日。(Jīntiān shì wǒ de shēngrì.)
David: Right. However if we look at the dialogue, something weird is happening. Echo, what’s that?
David:明天圣诞节。(Míngtiān shèngdàn jié.)
Echo:里边没有“是”。(Lǐbian méiyǒu “shì”.)
David:明天圣诞节。(Míngtiān shèngdàn jié.)
David: There is no是 (Shì) in these sentences.
Echo:明天圣诞节。(Míngtiān shèngdàn jié.)
David: Right. This is a special case and it’s a special usage in Chinese. Whenever you have a time word,
Echo: Such as明天。(Míngtiān.)
David: Right or yesterday or whatever and it comes at the start of a sentence and the time word is the subject you don’t need to use. Sure let’s have some examples.
Echo:前天情人节。(Qiántiān qíngrén jié.)
David: The day before yesterday was Valentine’s Day.
Echo:大后天母亲节。(Dàhòutiān mǔqīn jié.)
David: The day after the day after tomorrow is mother’s day. One more
Echo:今天春节。(Jīntiān chūnjié.)
David: Today is Chinese New Year’s. We can only do this when the time word comes at the start of the sentence and is the subject. So we can say
Echo:明天圣诞节。(Míngtiān shèngdàn jié.)
David: But if we reverse that and put Christmas first, we have to change it and it becomes
Echo:圣诞节是明天。(Shèngdàn jié shì míngtiān.)
David: So get it right. Okay and that brings us to the end of our grammar section.
Echo: Yeah.
David: That being said, Chinese grammar, it’s mostly pretty easy, I think.
Echo:没错 (Méi cuò)
David: It’s kind of like lego blocks, you put it together.
Echo:真的是这样的。(Zhēn de shì zhèyàng de.)


David: Yeah and you know, after a while, you are not going to get too much further up our system until you really know most of the basic building blocks wall of this. However if you have any questions, everyone has questions. You are not alone. Echo, what should you do?
Echo: Comment on the site.
David: Yeah come to chineseclass101.com, leave us a comment and we are going to get the answer to you ASAP. From Beijing, I am David.
Echo:我是 (Wǒ shì) Echo。
David: And we are wishing you happy studies. Take care.
Echo:好好学习,天天向上吧。(Hǎo hào xuéxí, tiāntiān xiàngshàng ba.)
David: Bye.