The first Chinese textbook for foreigners working in Shanghai and their families, "My Chinese Classroom" makes debut in Shanghai recently. Experts say the textbook fills the void in Chinese language teaching for expats in China.
Jane, wife of an expat working in Shanghai has spent more than one year in the city with her husband. The whole family feels comfortable living here. But they make little progress in learning Chinese although they have put much time on it.
Jane told reporter many Chinese textbooks in bookstores are written for foreign students who study in China. A lot of them have gone out-of-date. Expressions used in 1950s and 1960s are still found in these textbooks, e.g. "Comrade, I'd like to buy a meal." But as a matter of fact however standard and fluent the expressions are, no one speaks that way nowadays.��
At present there are 440, 000 expats living in Shanghai. By 2010, the number is expected to grow to 1.5 mln. The need for a practical Chinese textbook appears crucial to make foreigners communicate in Chinese more quickly and conveniently.
Beginning 2004, the Aimade publishing house began compiling a series of Chinese textbook for foreigners working in Shanghai and their families. The new book "My Chinese Classroom" makes debut following one year's work. Wu Zhongwei, vice president of college of international exchange of Fudan University hails the practical textbook as "China's first Chinese textbook for housewives".
By People's Daily Online