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Chinese Tongue Twisters
A very good way of learning a language is via tongue twisters. Tongue twisters can really train the tongue to make the right sound. Tongue twisters are called 绕口令 (rào kǒu lìng) in Chinese. Chinese tongue twisters are a bit harder than English ones: to pronounce the right tongue twister, you not only have to make the pronunciation right, you also have to make the tones right! But the fun is the same!
Here are some examples for Chinese tongue twisters:
妈妈骑马, 马慢, 妈妈骂 
Mā mā qí mǎ, mǎ màn, mā mā mà mǎ.
Mother rides a horse. The horse moves slowly. Mother chides the horse.
Sì shì sì, shí shì shí, shí sì shì shí sì, sì shí shì sì shí.
Four is four, ten is ten, fourteen is fourteen, forty is forty.
吃葡萄不吐葡萄皮, 不吃葡萄倒吐葡萄皮 
Chī pú táo bù tǔ pú táo pí, bù chī pú táo dào tǔ pú táo pí.
Eat grapes without spitting out the skin of the grape; eat no grapes but spit out the skin of the grapes.
Shí shì shī shì Shī Shì, shì shī, shì shí shí shī.
Shì shí shí shì shì shì shī.
Shí shí, shì shí shī shì shì.
Shì shí, shì Shī Shì shì shì.
Shì shì shì shí shī, shì shǐ shì, shǐ shì shí shī shì shì.
Shì shí shì shí shī shī, shì shí shì.
Shí shì shī, Shì shǐ shì shì shí shì.
Shí shì shì, Shì shǐ shì shí shì shí shī.
Shí shí, shǐ shí shì shí shī shī, shí shí shí shī shī.
Shì shì shì shì.
In a stone den, a poet called Shi Shi, who was a lion addict, and had resolved to eat ten lions.
He often went to the market to look for lions.
At ten o’clock, ten lions had just arrived at the market.
At that time, Shi had just arrived at the market.
He saw those ten lions, and using his trusty arrows, caused the ten lions to die.
He brought the corpses of the ten lions to the stone den.
The stone den was damp. He asked his servants to wipe it.
After the stone den was wiped, he tried to eat those ten lions.
When he ate, he realized that these ten lions were in fact ten stone lion corpses.
Try to explain this matter.
Did you know there are so many different variations in tones and characters of shi? This tongue twister is perfect for those already familiar with some Chinese who want not only a fun tongue twister, but a good brain teaser as well.
What is the best way to learn a tongue twister?
When a tongue twister is too long, it is a good idea to break it into smaller pieces. Mark all the unfamiliar words and make sure you understand what the tongue twister is trying to say. There is normally some logic rather than a combination of some random words. Read slowly first and pay attention to the pronunciation. Afterwards you can increase the speed. Faster and faster!