We have not been adding enough beginner stories to this website recently. In the future we will put more effort to ensure beginners can also find readable content. The Chinese passage contains a few more different characters than most beginner passages but is fairly straightforward. As always, if you have any questions then please ask in the comment section below. First, let’s look at some of the key words to be found in the passage below.

Key Words

燕子 – Swallow

窗户 – Window. In the story below, the character 窗 is used without the 户 character. This is very common in Chinese.

只 – Can mean “Only” but also has other meanings. This can be a measure word for birds. In the story below there is an instance where it means “only” “我只见一个” this would mean “I only saw one”. There is also an instance when it is used as a measure word “六只小燕子” meaning “6 baby swallows”.  Note that when you read this as “only” then you should use the third tone to read it whereas when used as a measure word the first tone should be used.

The Baby Swallows

For beginner learners then I really recommend picking up a level 1 book from the Chinese Breeze series. These books have helped me a lot.

(Hover over the Chinese for pinyin)

今天,我正在做作业。忽然爸爸在窗外招手让我出去,一脸神秘又兴奋的样子。我跑出去,爸爸指指屋顶的燕子窝,窝里传来几声燕子宝宝嫩嫩的 “喳喳” 声,原来是叫我去看燕子宝宝!

爸爸帮我搬来一把长长的梯子,我 “噌噌” 几下就爬了上去。只见一个碗样的鸟窝里住着六只小燕子,它们都长着黄黄的尖嘴,张得大大的,毛茸茸的身体一扭一扭,细细的黑色绒毛下露出粉红的皮肤,一个个伸长脖子张大嘴巴大叫着,真热闹。

突然,“啪” 的一声,一泡鸟粪掉在了我的身上,一只燕子宝宝拉便便了!我和爸爸一起哈哈大笑起来。


Here is a voice recording of a Chinese speaker reading this. Follow along while you read and attempt to imitate the pronunciation.


Difficult Translations

Let’s look at a couple of sentences from the passage above and translate them into English.


“Suddenly father beckoned me from outside the window asking me to go out”.


原来 in this sentence can be translated to “As it turns out…”. So the sentence becomes “It turns out that he called me to see some baby swallows”

Thanks for reading

We hope you found this useful. More beginner reading will be added soon so keep checking back for more.