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Lesson 13 How to say “What about it?” in Chinese

Posted by Grace Feng on February 7, 2012

What is the equivalent counterpart of “What about it?” in Chinese?

Usually when we chat with each other on something, and you wanna know the other person’s opinion and feelings about the thing you are talking about, you’d always ask:”What about it?”.

In Chinese, there’s a phrase that is right for this purpose:

zěn me yàng?

怎么样?

What about it?

[mp3j track=”L13-zen-me-yang.mp3″]

 

Before we continue, please study the following new words first as we always do. Use the estroke tool following the table to practice the strokes of each character if needed.

zěn me yàng yīn yuè huì jīng cǎi
[hanzi]怎么样[/hanzi] (what about it)
[hanzi]音乐会[/hanzi] (concert)
[hanzi]精彩[/hanzi] (wonderful)
[mp3j track=”L13-zen-me-yang.mp3″] [mp3j track=”L13-yin-yue-hui.mp3″] [mp3j track=”L13-jing-cai.mp3″]
duō shao duō cháng duō hǎo
[hanzi]多少[/hanzi](how much, how many)
[hanzi]多长[/hanzi](how long)
 [hanzi]多好[/hanzi](how well)
[mp3j track=”L13-duo-shao.mp3″] [mp3j track=”L13-duo-chang.mp3″] [mp3j track=”L13-duo-hao.mp3″]
wū zi xué sheng nà tiáo hé
 [hanzi]屋子[/hanzi](room)  [hanzi]学生[/hanzi](student)  [hanzi]那条河[/hanzi](that river)
[mp3j track=”L13-wu-zi.mp3″] [mp3j track=”L13-xue-sheng.mp3″] [mp3j track=”L13-nei-tiao-he.mp3″]
zuò
[hanzi][/hanzi] (do)
[mp3j track=”L13-zuo.mp3″]

 

  • You can copy and paste a few characters together into the box. They’ll show in the animation window one by one.
  • Once the stroke animation stops, click in the animation window and hit ENTER to replay it.
  • You can use the sliding bar to control writing speed of the animation.

 

“What about it” in Chinese context

 

For example, when your friend is telling you he went to a concert last night. You can use that phrase (actually that short sentence if it is used solely as a question) to let your friend tell you more about the concert:

Your friend:

     wǒ zuótiān qù le yīnyuèhuì.

     我昨天去了音乐会.

I went to the concert yesterday.

 

You:

      zěnmeyàng

     怎么样?

What about it?

 

Your friend:

      é, hěn jīngcǎi!

     哦, 很精彩!

Oh, wonderful!

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

Your friend most likely will continue on revealing more and more details about the concert.

The various usage of “how” in Chinese

 

In fact, “怎么”means “how”. We’ve introduced “how” question pattern in How to ask questions in Chinese (2). Here we need to expand a bit more on this topic again.

For “how” questions, if the questioning part can be totally replaced by “how”, then “how” can be replaced by  “怎么样”. If “how” is combined with other word, such as “how many”, “how long”, “how well” etc., then “how” should be replaced by “…”:

how many -> 多少 (duō shao)

how long -> 多长 (duō cháng)

how well -> 多好 (duō hǎo)

It will be more clear once you’ve gone through the following examples:

wūzi lǐ yǒu duōshao xuésheng?

屋子里有多少学生?

How many students are in the room?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

 

nà tiáo hé yǒu duō cháng?

那条河有多长?

How long is the river?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

 

tā zuò dé yǒu duō hǎo?

她做得有多好?

How well did she do?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

 

nǐ shì zěnmeyàng zuò de?

你是怎么样做的?

How did you do it?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

Feel free to drop any questions in your comment. See you next time!

元宵节快乐!

 

 

Related posts:

Lesson 16 The usage of Chinese character “就”
Lesson 17 How to ask directions in Chinese
Reading, Listening and Speaking practice 17

 

Category: JLC Chinese grammar lessons

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2 Responses to “Lesson 13 How to say “What about it?” in Chinese”

  1. nothing

    :

    08-13-2015 3:54 pm

    老师,您好。您想起来认识我吗?我关于数问过你。请帮助我。我不懂那个句子“你是怎么做的?”。我那样怎么用“的”?

    Reply

    • nothing

      Grace Feng:

      08-14-2015 3:40 am

      苏,你好,我当然记得你的上一个问题。:-)

      对于你的这一个问题, “你是怎么样做的?”, 简单说,句子也可以这样写:

      “你怎样做?”

      或者, “你怎样做的?”, 再或者, ”你是怎样做的?”

      “的”在这儿就是和前面的动词(verb)组合成一个词语,so that the sentence sounds more complete. You’ll see this usage everywhere.

      There’s no logical explanation of this usage. You can just copy the usage to your own practice. One thing though, “的” has to follow the verb.

      Reply

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