Garron, Chinese Academy Student

Garron is learning Chinese so that he can hopefully visit China with his family one day.

“Hi, my name is Garron Charles. I'm from New Jersey. I came here to study Chinese. Since I was a kid, I've always wanted to go to China. So I figured that the best way to do that would be to learn Chinese.

“I think that in being able to interact with people around the world it's important to be able to speak to people in their native language, because it makes people feel more comfortable. You get to connect with more people. Especially, I like to think that I'm a people person. So being able to connect with new people is always exciting for me.

“My parents told me that if I became fluent in Chinese that they would be able to take me to China. Unfortunately, my school doesn't have Chinese, so I can't really study Chinese at my school. So I come here to study Chinese. I think that if you're going to learn a language it should be in that language, because it makes a lot easier for you to learn it, rather than just learning a bunch of vocabulary and repeating that over and over again.

“When you're able to use it all day, you become more confident in your speaking and writing abilities. I love drawing, so the character writing was really cool for me. And it's just a fun language to speak. It all flows out very well. When you begin to think in the language, it really allows you to think of things in a different way. I feel like I can speak Chinese pretty well.

“The other day a couple weeks ago, I think, we went into Chinatown, and I was able to speak with people in Chinatown. So that was pretty cool, because they understood what I was saying. It's definitely not the end of my progression, but at this point, I think that I can say that I'm conversational. So I think that the next step is to go to China and interact with people that are native speakers.”