Me, you, him/her

Learn pronouns in Cantonese

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This week will focus on pronouns.  The good news is that spoken Cantonese doesn’t differentiate between gender.  And even better, to refer to multiple people pronouns, you just have to add the word 哋 (dei2) after me, you, and him/her to make we/us, you, and them.  

  • Me = 我 = ngo5
  • You = 你 = nei5
  • Him/her = 佢 = keoi5
  • We/us = 我哋 = ngo5 dei2
  • You (plural) = 你哋 = nei5 dei2
  • Them = 佢哋 = keoi5 dei2

Make it fun:

Ask your kids questions using the pronouns

  • What am I eating? = 我食緊乜嘢 = ngo5 sik6 gan2 mat1 je5
  • What are you eating? = 你食緊乜嘢 = nei5 sik6 gan2 mat1 je5
  • What is he/she eating? = 佢食緊乜嘢 = keoi5 sik6 gan2 mat1 je5
  • What are we eating? = 我哋食緊乜嘢 = ngo5 dei2 sik6 gan2 mat1 je5
  • What are you (plural) eating? = 你哋食緊乜嘢 = nei5 dei2 sik6 gan2 mat1 je5
  • What are they eating? = 佢哋食緊乜嘢 = keoi5 dei2 sik6 gan2 mat1 je5

What did you do?

We learned present tense “what are you doing, eating, reading, etc..?”.  Now we will learn past tense “what did you do, eat, read, etc…?”  The difference is only one word.  Instead of doing (做緊 zou6 gan2), eating (食緊 sik6 gan2), reading/watching (睇緊 tai2 gan2), you just switch the word 緊 gan2 with 咗 zo2. 

  • What did you do? = 你做咗乜嘢 = nei5 zou6 zo2 mat1 je5?
  • What did you eat? = 你食咗乜嘢  = nei5 sik6 zo2 mat1 je5?
  • What did you read/watch? = 你睇咗乜嘢 = nei5 tai2 zo2 mat1 je5?

Make it fun:

You can ask your kids what they did today at school, what they ate for lunch, or what they watched on TV.  

What time is it?

Telling time is a great way to teach numbers.  Here’s the most basic way to tell time. 點 (dim2) means o’clock  and 分 (fan1) means minutes.  

  • What time is it right now? = 而家幾多點 = ji4 gaa1 gei2 do1 dim2
  • Right now, it is 8:24 = 而家八點二十四分 =  ji4 gaa1 baat3 dim2 ji6 sap6 sei3 fan1

Make it fun

Ask your kids what time it is throughout the day!