Jake Gill (高健) is a Chinese educator, former “Teaching Chinese as a Second Language” graduate student, and the CEO of Skritter, an innovative language learning app that helps Japanese and Chinese learners master characters through active production (i.e. writing on the screen) instead of passive recognition.
In the interview, we talk about:
- How and why he learned Mandarin Chinese.
- Why traditional language classes won’t get you fluent in a language.
- What he would do differently if he were to start learning Mandarin over again.
- The limitations of app-based learning and following “the golden path.”
- The importance of following your passion and curiosity in languages.
- How to learn to write Chinese characters the “write” way.
- Jake’s current language learning routines and favorite resources.
- The importance of daily habits and focusing on process over outcome.
Concepts & Resources Mentioned
- Skritter (Use code LANGUAGEMASTERY to get 10% off. Read my full review of Skritter here.)
- Mandarin Training Center (國語教學中心)
- Mistakes don’t block the path; they are the path.
- Terrace House
- How to Find Your Bliss: Joseph Campbell on What It Takes to Have a Fulfilling Life
- Ultralearning: Master Hard Skills, Outsmart the Competition, and Accelerate Your Career
- Why Duolingo Won’t Get You Fluent (But Why You Should Use it Anyway)
- Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones
- Nick Winter
- George Saines
- Scott Erickson
- Remembering the Kanji
- Remembering Simplified Hanzi
- Remembering Traditional Hanzi
- Hànyǔ Pīnyīn (漢語拼音, 汉语拼音)
- Zhùyīn (注音)
- Tīngxiě (聽寫, 听写)
- Master Mandarin: How to Learn Mandarin Chinese Anywhere in the World
- BearTalk Podcast
- The King’s Avatar (全职高手)
- Language Learning with Netflix
- Nihongo Japanese dictionary app
- Nihongo creator Chris Vasselli on how to learn Japanese through anime, manga, video games & Harry Potter