First 24 Hours…| 3 min read

Almost everyone has arrived, has settled into their hotels and is starting to get to know each other.

With the time difference in China and after a long flight, the participants would undoubtedly be tired and so today is a rest day. At breakfast, temperature checks were done followed by photos being taken for their visa extensions.

The participants are keen to hear Solaro’s orientation speech tomorrow (Saturday). It will be held during breakfast at the Sotel (Solaro’s hotel) and around lunchtime at the Fitel (Fiona’s hotel). For the curious, quarantine procedures and an introduction to your teacher trainers will be on the agenda. Meanwhile the participants found ways to entertain themselves during the quarantine period.

There is so much to learn about China and it’s hard to know where to start. That’s why we’re going to help you learn a little about a number of things. Whether it be some basic Mandarin, survival tips, facts or your thoughts; you can find it here.

Idiom of the day

Idioms are Chinese sayings that usually consist of four characters (in Chinese it is called “Chengyu” which translates to ‘become (part of) the language’). To fully understand a Chengyu you must be familiar with the story it is derived from. You could say a Chengyu is the moral of a story which Chinese philosophers in ancient China used to secretly educate people since it was punishable if you did it publicly.

A Goat in Tiger‘s skin 羊质虎皮

A goat once found a tiger’s skin in the woods. It placed the tiger’s skin on its body and strutted around the woods. But when he saw some tender grass, it began to eat as usual. One day, it saw a wolf coming towards him. Forgetting that it was wearing in the tiger’s skin, the goat fled as fast as it could. After all, the goat never forgot it was actually a goat.

Explanation: Said of a person who looks strong on the outside, but is timid inside.

Fact of the day

Did you know Mandarin is the most spoken language in the world (even ahead of English!)? 885 million people mostly in northern and southern China are native speakers. Since the foundation of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 (this year on October 1st is the 60 year anniversary) Mandarin is referred to as Putonghua (‘common tongue’). The language itself has four spoken tones (see the diagram below).

Basic Mandarin words

Mandarin is a difficult language and so it can be overwhelming to learn. We’ll provide you some basic Mandarin to help you get by. If you want to translate English, Chinese characters, pinyin or want to hear the pronunciation you can check out this website: http://us.mdbg.net/chindict/chindict.php (google ‘mdbg’).


Chinese Characters Pinyin English
你好 nǐhǎo Hello
谢谢 xièxie Thank you(apparently if you pronounce it wrong it means diarrhea)
再见 zàijiàn Goodbye
不客气 bùkèqi You’re welcome
对不起 duìbuqǐ Sorry/Excuse me


Rachel Yoon

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