Self-Study – Mandarin Coach – Mandarin Teacher – University
Don’t learn Chinese on your own.
“But Luke & Phil,” you say, “If I don’t learn on my own I might have to go to University or get a tutor! They almost always make me want to quit!”
Truth! Speak it! We feel that pain. It’s maddening going into a class and realizing that the teacher is wasting your time with learning methods that don’t work while simultaneously knowing that you lack the knowledge necessary to do it on your own. That’s why it feels like a betrayal. You’ve gone to the ‘professionals’ hat in hand humbly asking for their guidance, and next thing you know they are showing you how to interpret the grammar of a 1960s economist’s newspaper article.
The Temptation of University
We’ve seen many of our local friends fall back on university despite knowing that it’s so lame. If they know that the curriculum is going to lead them astray, why do they still go? The answer is simple: There is at least some semblance of a plan. You show up every day, move through a textbook chapter for a couple of weeks, take a quiz, and then proceed to the next chapter. The textbooks suck and end up building resentment in the students following them, but at least there is a “do this then that” linear curriculum.
So are Teachers Betraying You?
In reality, they aren’t betraying you; they just are constrained by an education system that bases everything on examinations. If that’s all you ever knew, how could you present learning in any other way? And hey, we’re not even against tests for a great many things. Just not language. Academic subjects all rest of the assumption that you *already* use language. Language acquisition occurs in many ways that standard academic subjects just don’t, and so it’s a non-starter to apply educational pedagogy to language acquisition. 怎么办？
If you study on your own, the main advantage is the avoidance of the negatives inherent in academia. A significant advantage indeed, but if you try to figure out everything on your own, then you also have to make your PLAN on your own. Educational planning is a different type of thinking that carries with it a catch-22. To have the ability to know what you should focus on while learning Chinese, you have to have detailed knowledge of what you will face at five or six steps ahead of where you are now. To have that in-depth knowledge, you must have already studied the language for years.
So teachers lead you astray, and Mandarin beginners lack the knowledge of what to prioritize at different stages of the process. That’s why the solution is a Mandarin coach.
Goldilocks Solution: A Mandarin Coach
The Mandarin Blueprint Method is the solution to the problem of both teachers and self-study not working. Universities have one thing right; you can’t do it on your own. Perhaps, however, you need a COACH more than you need a teacher. Have a plan, have a coach, and THEN take the bull by the horns (sorry PETA).
You don’t need someone to hold your hand through every little detail. Instead, you need someone who has already walked the path to help you realize when you are straying away from what’s useful. Even if you are on the correct path at the moment, how do you know when it’s time to change the challenge? When should you shift your focus from character components to 汉字 to vocabulary to comprehensible input? The answers to these questions aren’t obvious.
We build The Mandarin Blueprint Method with empathy for you in mind, because we were once in exactly your position. Self-study is too tricky & teachers tend not to have a clue. We get it, and so we combined the best of a university (a planned curriculum) with the best of self-study (avoiding academic nonsense). Try it for free; we’re sure you’ll love it.