Using Sage Books As a Native Chinese Speaking Family

Sage picture

As I’m looking on the Facebook groups and other forums. The number one issue families have is that the kids don’t want to read the books. Some run away at the first word. Some just cannot make it through. Some are just fine and fascinated with everything in the Sage collection. I wanted to go over our situation. As a background, Sagebooks is concentrated on teaching children the most frequently used words in Chinese.

We’re a native speaking Chinese family with a few thousand books at home! Most are books are beautiful, interesting, and some even fascinating to adults. When you bring any “learning” material as Sage into the mix, there will be a big shock. It is not written like the picture books, nor is it focused on any story. Pictures are simple and the main point is to learn the words. Here are the things I like about Sage:

  1. Simple short chapters
  2. Clear wording
  3. Short simple sentences
  4. Has a clear purpose of getting to that basic 500 words you need

If I had to complain then I just have to say for native families, it really is a boring read compared to what you have at home so then you’re dragging your feet along when even thinking about opening that book for your child. I find myself dragging my feet. However, I’ve found a happy medium on how to get through the books. My 3 year old through lots of picture book reading, knows maybe more than half the words in the Sage books already but I find it still beneficial for her to go through and pick up the words she doesn’t know. I show in the video how I interact with her. This is a way to engage and make it interesting for her.

Progress: we can go through one book at a time if we wanted to. It really depends on if I have the energy to do so! You can take the same concept and try not to make it so painful for the kids if you’re a native speaking family at home like us. I’ve also made extra materials (worksheets, flashcards) free for you to download on my Facebook Group page:

5 responses to “Using Sage Books As a Native Chinese Speaking Family”

  1. […] Without comprehension, you can know 3000 words and still be illiterate. This is why reading together and talking to them daily is so important. Comprehension will breed into interest will breed into reading with ease and being interested in the topic and utilize Chinese as a tool for them to acquire information and not use it as a “class” or something they have to “learn.” In other words, make them use it like they use English. I didn’t use a formal system so when I bought Sagebooks this year, I found my three year old already knows 95% of the words in there (and she resisted with a passion so we ended up just asking her the words she knows in there with their table of contents and not put her through something she really doesn’t want to read). I posted something on that here: Using Sage Books As a Native Chinese Speaking Family […]


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