Instant help from native Mandarin speakers!

by 卡梅尔 on October 18, 2011

A few weeks ago I posted about Lang-8. Well here’s another one. After a few weeks I am even more enthusiastic about an amazing web site to help anyone learn any language! Sounds too good to be true? But it’s not. Developed in Japan, it has similarities to face book, in that it is very social and you have lots of friends. But the whole purpose is to help each other learn. Most of my friends live in China and their native language is Mandarin. They are all learning English. We all type in sentences, stories or even essays, in the language we are learning, and people who natively speak that language correct it. So I correct their writing and they correct mine. In doing this we learn about each other, have conversations, but above all are always helping each other learn. It is a very friendly and supportive atmosphere. Just amazing.
My friends range in age from 7 years!!! to 47 and like me, unstated (older). Most of them are about 20 and attending university.
Apparently the largest group on the site is the Japanese and English language group. The native language of one of my friends is Urdu! His must be the smallest group. He lives in Pakistan and unfortunately for him, so far, no English speaking person learning Urdu has registered on the site. He is a good man, and it is very interesting to read his stories.
It is not necessary to reveal any details about yourself, you can be completely anonymous, but most people are quite open.
The site is designed like a diary. Entries are written in a journal, and each entry has 4 options as to who can see it. It can be viewed by anyone on the whole internet, only by people on Lang-8, only by friends, or kept private.
There is a way of giving up to 5 stars to people who correct your work and you can give thanks points for comments too.
You can always see how many entries people have made, how many corrections they’ve made, and it’s easy to see their public profile and send them messages.
To use the site costs nothing, but I can remember the advertising being a bit much. So I opted to pay about $5 a month or $45 a year I think. Not much for the help that I get!
Of course all this means I don’t need this blog anymore! Just kidding, it really means I can change the focus of this blog. I won’t have to write up my poor Chinese and wait for a kind person to find it. I can get instant feed back at Lang-8. From now on I will put onto this blog things or methods that I use to help me to learn Mandarin.
Things like Pimsleur, Skritter, even Google translate!! and there’s more, but one at a time.

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