Somebody gave me a great idea: to post commented links to Qiao Hu episodes on the for the benefit of other beginners. He suggested includes a plot synopsis and mentioning what I was able to understand. (The person is a friendly administrator of the website www.chinese-forums.com).
Thus, Qiao Hu Study Guides are born. I will develop at least one per month. Doing so will serve two main purposes. First, it will be a strong motivation for me to watch what I’ve identified as my best source, but which I naturally find boring. Second, it will provide useful content to current and future followers of my blog.
Regarding this second reason: One of the underlying reasons for writing this blog, and even conducting this whole experiment, is to generate traffic and a community of people interested in language acquisition. Hopefully, that will eventually be useful to the language institute I founded. So how does one generate traffic? In my layman’s opinion, the whole secret to generating solid long-term traffic to any website resides in two simple words: useful content. Since I’m convinced Qiao Hu is extremely useful to beginning and low intermediate students of Mandarin, and having someone identify particularly useful episodes and sections of episodes, as well as vocabulary that can be picked up or reinforced, is a real benefit, I believe this will further my blog’s purposes.
You can visit the study guide page by clicking on the menu button above, exploding the Sources menu, and then choosing Qiao Hu Study Guides.
For those who may not want to go there just yet, I’ll paste the introduction I wrote to the Study Guides below:
At least once a month, I will write a study guide for a Qiao Hu episode. If you are new to this page and are a beginning student of Chinese who would like to use these study guides, I suggest starting from the first guide and then using them sequentially. I will write these guides for exactly my level of Chinese, which I still consider total beginner but, by the time my experiment is up, I hope will be at an intermediate level (at least low intermediate) in terms of listening comprehension. Each guide will indicate the level I was at when I wrote it by the number of hours of viewing I had done at that point in time. (It is therefore plausible that I will make two or more guides on the same episode for different levels).
I will provide the links to Word documents for all study guides at the top, and then full text versions of the study guides below, with the most recent one on top. The Word documents will generally be more useful, since the in-page text will have some loss of formatting.
In the spirit of my experiment, these guides do not actually teach any Mandarin in a traditional way. There are no translations, no grammatical explanations, and actually no Mandarin at all. Instead, they serve the following purposes:
(1) Identify excellent Qiao Hu episodes (or parts of episodes), especially in terms of a beginner wanting to pick up new vocabulary and provide a YouTube link.
(2) Identify the topics that are covered in that episode.
(3) Identify the specific vocabulary that I was able to pick up or reinforce in that episode (the terms are provided only in English, so it’s just a guide of what to look for, rather than a vocabulary list).
(4) Provide a synposis of that episode.
(5) Break down the episode by sections, explain what happens in each section and provide a vocabulary guide for that section.