Chinese Character A Day is Adeline Yen Mah’s dream to teach Chinese to anyone who wants to learn the language. Two developments have made the teaching of Chinese much easier. The first is the Computer. The second is PIN 拼 YIN 音, which means Combining Sound with Shape into Syllables; or Matching Pronunciation of Chinese Characters with their Images by Using Letters of the Alphabet; or Spelling Chinese Characters.

Please think of your computer as your very own Aladdin’s lamp. In this first lesson, I will teach you how to rub your lamp so as to download the Chinese Language Option which is stored in every computer.

Let us begin: Here are seven easy steps to download the Chinese language option onto your PC if you are using Windows.

*Click here to watch video instructions for installing the Chinese Language onto all operating systems

  1. Turn on your computer and left click the Start symbol (bottom left of your screen):
  2. Left click on Control Panel:
  3. Double click Regional and Language:
  4. Regional and Language Options Box opens:
    Select Languages tab and check box to:
    “Install files for East Asian Languages” This box must be clicked. Next press the Details button
  5. In the “Text Services and Input Languages” window press the “Add” buttonThen in the “Add Input language” go to the second drop down and select the “Chinese (Simplified) – US Keyboard”Press “OK” .
  6. Towards the bottom of the same dialogue box Text Services and Input Languages, there are two small, rectangulat boxes: Language Bar and Key Settings.
    Click on Language Bar and choose show language bar on the desktop. Click OK. Next click on Key Settings, then click on Change Key Sequence. When you see switch between input languages, choose Left Alt and Shift. Click OK and exit.
  7. From now on, you will be able to switch between typing English words or Chinese characters by pressing the keys Shift and Alt on your computer’s keyboard at the same time.
  8. The Chinese character which means `number one’ is a single horizontal line 一 and is pronounced YI [audio:|titles=yi] . On your computer, please press Alt / Shift at the same time. As soon as you press Alt/Shift, the lanuage bar changes from EN to CH. Type the letters YI followed by the space bar. A Chinese character appears. If it is not a single, horizontal line, the character is not 一, the word you want. Press the left arrow key. A whole list of Chinese characters (all pronounced YI) appear next to the first character. If 一 is not among them, toggle down until you find it. When you see it, press the Arabic number next to it. Congratulations! You have just typed 一 , the most frequently used word in the Chinese language. Please type 一 twenty times while saying [audio:|titles=yi] 一 一 一 each time you type the word.