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Lesson 019 Where Is My Room?

07-08-2010 15:03 BJT

Yajie: Perfect Chinese your way, in only five minutes a day. Welcome to Chinese Studio. I’m Yajie.
Cam: Hi, everyone, I’m Cam. 早上好 zǎoshang hǎo, yajie.
Yajie: 早上好!Today we’ll learn how to ask directions, and look for someone. First let’s take a look at key words of the day!

************ Key words of the day
Today we’ll learn a very useful expression of asking directions. 在哪儿, where? 请问我的房间在哪儿?Please may I ask where is my room? 请问王老师在哪儿?Please may I ask where is Mr. Wang? All in today’s Chinese Studio.

Yajie: When you get lost or want to know the location of a place, you may ask people for directions. So in Chinese you can say “在哪儿?” zài,the forth tone. Here“在” means “to be here or there, or to be in, on, at ”. We’ve already learned在前面, 在后面, right?
Cam: Yeah. I still remember在前面,in front; 在后面,at the back. 在东边,in the east; 在西边, in the west.
Yajie: Right. And “哪儿” is a question phrase. It means “where”. You may find it a little bit difficult to pronounce. Actually it is a “nǎ” third tone plus an “er”.  The pronunciation of “er” is very similar to that of the English word “sister”. So together it’s “nǎr”.
Cam: nǎr.
Yajie: We also say那儿, nàr, there.
Cam: nàr.
Yajie: 这儿, “zhèr”, here.
Cam: “zhèr”
Yajie: 玩儿,“wánr”, to play.
Cam: 玩儿,“wánr”. Wow that’s funny. I like it.
Yajie: We’ll learn more about it later. Back to the sentence.“我的房间在哪儿?” Where is my room?
Cam: 我的房间在哪儿?(wǒ de fángjiān zài nǎr?)
Yajie: 我的, mine. 的 suggests that something belongs to somebody. You can also say 你的,yours.
Cam: 我的 (wǒ de), 你的 (nǐ de).
Yajie: 房间 means room.
Cam: 房间 (fángjiān).
Yajie: 在哪儿?it means where is…?
Cam:  在哪儿? (zài nǎr)
Yajie: 我的房间在哪儿?
Cam: 我的房间在哪儿?(wǒ de fángjiān zài nǎr?)
Yajie: The answer to在哪儿?could be simplified to a place. That’s to say you need not mention the subject of the sentence. For example, if the guest asked a waiter: 我的房间在哪儿?The waiter could simply answer: 在前面。
Cam: Ok. I see. That’s easy. 在前面.
Yajie: To put it politely we always add “请问” before the sentence. “qǐng” third tone means “please”, and “wèn ” forth tone. The meaning is “to ask”. “请问” means “Please may I ask…?”
Cam: qǐng wèn.
Yajie: So we say “请问,我的房间在哪儿?”
Cam: 请问,我的房间在哪儿? (qǐng wèn wǒ de fángjiān zài nǎr?)

Yajie: Besides asking directions we can also use “在哪儿” for looking for someone. You can ask “Someone在哪儿? ” For example: 请问王老师在哪儿?Where is Mr. Wang?
Cam: 请问王老师在哪儿?(qǐng wèn Wǎng Lǎoshī zài nǎr?)
Yajie: 王is a surname; and 老师means teacher. Together王老师means Mr. Wang.
Cam: 王老师.
Yajie: Or 请问服务员在哪儿?Where is the waiter?
Cam: 请问服务员在哪儿?(qǐng wèn fúwùyuán zài nǎr?)
Yajie: 服务员, the waiter.
Cam: 服务员(fúwùyuán)

*************Key words reminder
在哪儿can be used both to ask directions and look for people. You can say “我的房间在哪儿?” “王老师在哪儿?”, or in a polite way,“请问我的房间在哪儿?”“请问王老师在哪儿?”

Yajie: OK, that’s it for today. Hope you can ask directions and look for people in Chinese after the lesson. Remember, you can win a CRI gift by answering today’s question: How do you say “Where is Tian’an Men Square ?” in Chinese?
Cam: Yep, that’s very easy. Just give us a sentence. Send us your answer to That’s If you answer the question correctly, you’ll be able to win CRI prizes! Also you are welcome to log on the website, that’s, then you can learn Chinese whenever you want.Yajie: Well class is over. 再见!
Cam: 再见!

Editor:Shi Taoyang |Source: CRI

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