Chinese Language Blog

Best of Transparent Chinese Series Posted by on May 29, 2013 in Culture, Vocabulary

Throughout my time blogging for Transparent Chinese, I’ve put together many different series of posts. From music, to love, to history, to Chinese idioms, and much, much more, a lot of topics have been discussed here over the years. In case you’ve missed any of them, here’s an easy-to-follow guide to a few of the best:

What’s in a Chinese Character?

The evolution of the character for "ear."

Last year, I did a few posts about Chinese characters. In case you missed this helpful series that explains a lot about the written form of Chinese, here they are:

  • Volume 1: Learn about the evolution of Chinese characters by studying a few basic ones – the numbers 1-3, person, man, woman, day, and month.
  • Volume 2: This post takes a closer look at people, with the Chinese characters for face, eye, ear, mouth, and hand.
  • Volume 3: In this post, we move from humans to nature, as we take a closer look at the characters for water, fire, mountain, and rain.

Chinese Love

Learn how to say “I love you” in Chinese.

  • Part One: Learn how to show your love in Chinese with the Chinese character for love, and different ways to express your affection.
  • Part Two: Get the dirt on dating in China, including how people end up dating, making commitments, and differences between Western and Chinese culture.
  • Part Three: You’ve heard about the Cultural Revolution in China, but how about the Sexual Revolution? Did you know that Chairman Mao was actually quite the playboy? Read this to find out more.
  • Part Four: Planning a traditional Chinese wedding is a lot of work. Learn about some of the customs related to engagement and getting ready for the big day in China.
  • Part Five: Now that the wedding has been planned, there’s tons to do. Find out more about some interesting customs on the day of the wedding, such as how a man must face challenges from his bride-to-be’s bridesmaids.
  • Part Six: Finally, it’s time for the wedding! In this post, get the details about the wedding tea ceremony, as well as the big banquet and all of the food and booze that comes with it.
  • Part Seven: You know the old saying… first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the Little Emperor in the baby carriage. Learn about raising kids in China and how the one-child policy has changed things over the years.

Chinese Cuisine

A video about Chinese cuisine called “Discovering China.”

Chinese food is famous all over the world, but how much do you really know about it? If sweet and sour chicken, egg rolls, and crab rangoons come to mind when you think of Chinese food, you could probably use a littler schooling…

  • Northern Cuisine: Get an introduction into the 8 Culinary Traditions of China, and learn about the food from Beijing, Shandong, and the northeast part of the country.
  • Western Cuisine: If you don’t like it spicy, then this post may not be for you. Set your taste buds on fire with the cuisine of Sichuan and Hunan provinces.
  • Southern Cuisine: Dim sum, drunken prawns, and more in this post about Cantonese food.
  • Eastern Cuisine: Dive deeper into the cuisine of four eastern provinces – Anhui, Fujian, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang.

Chinese Reading Comprehension

In an effort to practice my Chinese writing and help you all with your Chinese reading, I put together a series of basic articles all in Chinese. As my Chinese friend said, “It’s like the homework I did in primary school!” That’s quite the accomplishment for me, as writing Chinese has always been the hardest part about the language.

  • Introduce Yourself in Chinese: Get to know more about me in Chinese, and then introduce yourself!
  • A Day in the Chinese Life: This article will teach you a lot of useful vocabulary for talking about daily activities.
  • Life in the ‘Jing: Find out what I like and dislike about living in the Chinese capital, and then try to talk about where you live.
  • My Family: This post teaches a lot of family related vocabulary, seeing as how my family is so big!
  • My Job: Get a glimpse into the life of an ESL teacher in China and learn a lot of Chinese at the same time.
  • My Hobbies: Talking about your hobbies is a fun way to practice a language. Read about mine and then try writing about yours.
  • My Diet: Eating is a big part of our lives, so you should learn how to talk about it in Chinese!


Learning idioms helps you learn more than just the language; it also teaches you about the history and culture of a country. Through these posts, you can learn 18 common Chinese idioms.

Why does "horse horse tiger tiger" mean "so-so" in Chinese? Read on to find out!

  • Volume 1: Want to know what “Causing the fish to sink deep in water and the geese to fall to the ground” means? Read on to find out!
  • Volume 2: Learn the Chinese equivalent of “don’t put all of your eggs into one basket” and more.
  • Volume 3: Why is it said in Chinese that “a fool tells about his dreams”?
  • Volume 4: How can you use a Chinese idiom to describe Ronald McDonald?
  • Volume 5: What on Earth could “a mantis trying to stop a carriage” mean?
  • Volume 6: Learn some idioms and Chinglish in this post, which features “horse horse tiger tiger” and “people mountain, people sea.”


Stay tuned to the blog in the months to come as we continue on our journey around China with the ongoing “Better Know a…” series, as well as the rest of our Top 10 Places in Beijing countdown. Don’t forget, you can always subscribe to the blog to get new posts sent directly to your e-mail so you never miss one!



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About the Author: sasha

Sasha is an English teacher, writer, photographer, and videographer from the great state of Michigan. Upon graduating from Michigan State University, he moved to China and spent 5+ years living, working, studying, and traveling there. He also studied Indonesian Language & Culture in Bali for a year. He and his wife run the travel blog Grateful Gypsies, and they're currently trying the digital nomad lifestyle across Latin America.

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