Suggested Difficulty (Elementary etc): Intermediate?
Video or Audio: Video always is great but audio is no slouch
Lesson Idea: Hi @Constance_Fang and Team,
So one of the things which slows down and terminates the flow of speech for me is the little mental research project I have to do when I want to communicate that something is not “working.” I am aware of almost no circumstances in Chinese where a thing “works” or does not “work” (correct me if I am wrong.) I have spoken to educated and fluent speakers of Mandarin on this and have been told the mark of a foreigner or a Chinese person who has lost their ability to speak mandarin correctly is someone who says a device “不工作.” In my experience you have to find the context or noun specific verb that goes with the narrow meaning you want. A car does not “not work,” rather it has to "不開“ or some other verb which couples with the specific thing that is wrong with it. Another example; I have an electric kettle. It isn’t “working.” Now in English that could mean a dozen things. It could mean it doesn’t turn on. It could mean it heats the water halfway but no more. It could mean it heats the water but makes a disturbing sound while doing so. The declaration that something is not “working” often is followed by the listener asking “what exactly isn’t working,” with a little explanation to follow, but in each circumstances the catch-all often suffices. Obviously this creates a very specific and daunting challenge to the English brain when speaking Chinese which is used to the ever-present option of using the catch-all “work.” Do you guys have a Qing Wen on this? If not it might be useful to have a Qing Wen with a dozen or so sentences for common appliances or machines: “the pencil is not working” (the mechanical pencil does not dispense lead) “the pen isn’t working” (the pen is out of ink) “the computer is not working” (it is frozen, or pick a series of problems.) The key is to present a core mass of verbs which can be applied to many different circumstances. If that cannot be done then I know I would love to have a giant list of sentences with “not working” circumstances communicated with correct noun-verb combos.