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Chinese (Mandarin) Level 1 Lessons 1-5

Learn to Speak and Understand Mandarin Chinese with Pimsleur Language Programs
Written by: Pimsleur
Narrated by: Pimsleur
Series: Pimsleur Mandarin Chinese, Book 1
Length: 2 hrs and 48 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Pimsleur® Method: the easiest, fastest way to learn a new language. Completely portable, easily downloadable, and lots of fun. You'll be speaking and understanding in no time flat! 

Each lesson in lessons 1 to 5 provides 30 minutes of spoken language practice, with an introductory conversation and new vocabulary and structures. Detailed instructions enable you to understand and participate in the conversation. Each lesson contains practice for vocabulary introduced in previous lessons. The emphasis is on pronunciation and comprehension and on learning to speak Mandarin Chinese. 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2000 Simon & Schuster (P)2010 Simon & Schuster

What the critics say

"Pimsleur programs provide plenty of positive reinforcement that will keep learners on track, and we found that Pimsleur gave us more proficiency and confidence in speaking the new language than any of the other language programs we reviewed." (AudioFile magazine)

What members say

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Price and PDF file

There are two main problems with this item: First of all, the price of it is so high compared to other similar subjects like Paul Nobles series. Secondly, there is no PDF file for course review with it. Hope these problems be addressed accordingly.

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  • Sandy
  • 2013-01-22

Very useful!

I'm writing this review on the beginning units so it will be of use to anybody contemplating trying these lessons. I have all three phases and have been in China and I would highly recommend this course. For me, these have been very useful tools for laying the ground work for speaking Mandarin. With only these lessons I have been able to get around in China and generally convey what I need.

48 of 49 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert W. Drues
  • 2015-08-11

Too inconsistent

What disappointed you about Chinese (Man) Phase 1, Unit 01-05?

sometimes simple words were repeated multiple times with admonitions to pronounce them correctly, while other times, complicated and difficult multi-word phrases were not broken down so that they could be repeated correctly

What was one of the most memorable moments of Chinese (Man) Phase 1, Unit 01-05?

Realizing How difficult the Mandarin language is for an English speaking person to learn.

What didn’t you like about the narrator’s performance?

The phrases were frequently said rapidly by the chinese speaker without breaking them into simpler words. It is good to hear these words as a native speaker would say them, but without the breakdown, it becomes impossible to repeat them

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

A bit of anger at the fact that each lesson also contains the copyright statement. Since each section has 5 or 30 half hour lessons, which usually must be repeated at least 2 or 3 times each, this means listening to the copyright statement perhaps 100 times or more. Is this really necessary.

Any additional comments?

These lessons seem rather high priced compared to usual Audible content. It costs a credit for 5 lessons (2 and a half hours). Compare this to a best seller book which may be 40 hours long, also costing a credit. And the book usually has a rather short time during which it is popular.
Still, using the Pimsleur system on an MP3 player is an efficient way to learn a language, and I will continue pimsleur language courses.
I think, however, that the Mandarin course, from my limited experience with it, is below the standards that I have seen in other Pimsleur courses.

85 of 90 people found this review helpful

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  • Mars
  • 2015-07-09

Great method!

Started Pimsleur Chinese. I finished my first 5 units this week. It is great! Granted I studied mandarin a few years back but I forgot everything so it could be a bit more challenging for total newbies. That said, you catch up very quickly. I would recommend to re-listen to chapters two to three times at the beginning especially is you have had no exposure to the language before and write a little glossary after your revision to retain the information. Enjoy!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Kuhan
  • 2015-10-19

Too Repititive

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

There is too much repetition in the chapters. Being an audio book that I can easily select chapters, I find that Pimsleur has deliberately put the same material to cover 75% in a new chapter which makes it dull and lengthy. If I wanted to revise something that I had learnt, I could just go back to the chapter. I don't need the same thing repeated on to the next chapter. Just when you are ready to learn new words and sentences, the half hour chapter is already over and you have lost precious time just repeating what you have already practiced in the previous chapters.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

He was very good

What character would you cut from Chinese (Man) Phase 1, Unit 01-05?

None, sometimes he pronounces things different from the girl so its confusing.

Any additional comments?

I don't have a choice but carry on buying the books cause they are very good in teaching except they should start a new chapter with less repetitions.

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Martin Havelka
  • 2015-03-16

It seems to work so far. I Learn and I enjoy it.

The pace is a tad too quick for me, but that is resolved by the audible app which allows you to slow it down.
So far the best Chinese course I've tried... Well worth the price!

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • T. H. Snell
  • 2019-07-20

Would be much better with better target customer

Their language instruction methods are excellent, and the performance by the speakers is clear and helpful.

Two major problems, from my point of view:
1. For the price, there ought to be 10 lessons per book, instead of only 5.
2. It soon becomes extremely clear that their choice of beginning conversation (up through lesson 10 anyway) is geared to someone trying to pick up a Chinese-speaker. My hope is that future lessons will move to more interesting and versatile vocabulary than, for example, buying someone a drink and going to a hotel.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Morrcahn
  • 2019-12-12

Really helps coach the proper tones

I've been told by native speakers that my accent is great. All thanks to Pimsleur.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Niramon Jirasukhanon
  • 2019-06-24

Found wrong sentence from chapter 1

Normally the Chinese refer to Chinese language as “zhōng wén” not ‘pudong’ (not sure how to spell it since I’m a beginner and there’s no manual for the lesson. I search a few website, every web used “ni huì shuō zhōngwén mā”
And after I got to chapter 3, I found that the lessen went veryyyyyy slow, very few sentences were added in each chapter.

Even I think their teaching technique could help me learn chinese, but I’m not sure which sentences in these book are wrong and 5 chapters per credit is too expensive.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Robyn
  • 2019-03-19

Too expensive

Very expensive if you consider it's just five days learning material.
The content is good.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Nick Romero
  • 2018-09-29

does the job

the lessons are to short. I liked the format. overall okay. I expected more for the cost paid. only covered a small amount of words. I'll see if lesson two is better.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • naturalivres
  • 2019-08-04

Parfait pour travailler l’oral et la compréhension orale

Je l’utilise en complément de cours pour améliorer mon écoute et ma prononciation. Pour l’instant, les progrès sont là.
Par contre, il faut le faire tous les jours, voire deux fois dans la même journée et en étant bien concentré. La compréhension de l’anglais est indispensable.