lesson 13   
​asking availability
 
 

gRAMMAR

在+verb

在 is an auxiliary verb. One of the usages is to express an ongoing action.

你在做什么?

Nǐ zài zuò shénme?

What are you doing?

 

张娜在睡觉。

Zhāng nà zài shuìjiào.

Zhang Na is sleeping.

 

The adverb 还

When 还used before verbs, it means “still”and “also”. When it used before “在”, it can be used to indicate that something is continually occurring.

她很累了,但是她还是学中文。

Tā hěn lèile, dànshì tā háishì xué zhōngwén.

Although she was very tired, she was still learning Chinese.

 

不要说话,我女儿还在睡觉。

Búyào shuōhuà, wǒ nǚ'ér hái zài shuìjiào.

Be quiet! My daughter is still sleeping.

 

 

The particle 了

One of the most common usages is to express the completion of an action.

你今天早上吃了什么?

Nǐ jīntiān zǎoshang chīle shénme?

What did you eat this morning?

 

我昨天晚上看了中文书。

Wǒ zuótiān wǎnshàng kànle zhōngwén shū.

I read a Chinese book last night.

 

The auxiliary verb要

要 has quite a lot of meanings in Chinese. It can be used before verbs to indicate a future action.

星期五我要学中文。

Xīngqíwǔ wǒ yào xué zhōngwén.

I’m going to learn Chinese this Friday.

 

明天你要做什么?

Míngtiān nǐ yào zuò shénme?

What are you going to do tomorrow?

 

Chinese time expression rule

In Chinese sentence structure, big time often used before more specific time. The order will be like: year-month-week-day-time

我明天下午10点去找你。

Wǒ míngtiān xiàwǔ shí diǎn qù zhǎo nǐ.

I will meet you at 10 o’clock tomorrow afternoon.

 

今天是5月28日星期三。

Jīntiān shì wǔ yuè èrshí rì xīngqísān.

It’s Wednesday, May 28th today.

 

Word order in Chinese

The basic word order in a Chinese sentence is as follows:

Subject+ Adverbial(time, place, manner, etc)+ verb+ object

张娜星期三去看电影。

Zhāng nà xīngqísān qù kàn diànyǐng.

Zhang Na is going to watch a movie on Wednesday.

 

我明天要去工作。

Wǒ míngtiān yào qù gōngzuò.

I’m going to work tomorrow.