10 Tips for Surviving Cross-Cultural Marriage, Part 2

10 Tips for Surviving Cross-Cultural Marriage, Part 2

See here for Part 1. 5. Never Manipulate - EVER Manipulation often depends on deliberately causing the other person to become disoriented. Since cross-cultural relationships are inherently disorienting, the last thing you need in the relationship is more...

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Comprehensible Input at an Advanced Level

Comprehensible Input at an Advanced Level

I've talked with several of my friends who are advanced students, and there is much frustration that there is such little interesting material out there for people at our level. Some people say, "Just study material made for native speakers!" Of course we all spend...

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HSK 6: Take 3

HSK 6: Take 3

For two years, I've been on iTalki almost daily, focusing on my reading and listening skills. My latest HSK 6 scores reflect that effort - and equally reflect neglect of writing. My overall score has improved from 224 to 240, with listening shooting way beyond last...

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I Deleted All My Flashcards – On Purpose

I Deleted All My Flashcards – On Purpose

Yep. All 25,000+ of them. Gone. Why? The number in the above paragraph should give a clue: The bloated collection had become a boat anchor instead of a blessing. I found liberation. Don't get me wrong: I spent countless hours on flashcards when I was in language...

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The Bloodthirsty Dogfight: Tone Changes vs. Pinyin Standards

The Bloodthirsty Dogfight: Tone Changes vs. Pinyin Standards

In the last few months, there's been an avalanche of comments on multiple platforms about pinyin not reflecting tone changes. Some of these comments are angry students who seem downright outraged at the "mistake." Oddly, some of this is happening on Newbie and...

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10 Tips for Surviving Cross-Cultural Marriage, Part 1

10 Tips for Surviving Cross-Cultural Marriage, Part 1

American society is awash in delusional starry-eye multi-cultural romanticism. We think our problems would be solved if only people from all languages and cultures would come together, hold hands, and sing "Kumbaya." There are at least two problems with that...

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