Chinese Tongue Twisters // 5 of the Best To Learn

The 5 Greatest Chinese Tongue Twisters

One of the best ways to practice your Chinese pronunciation is to learn some Chinese tongue twisters.

Lex The Lion - Teaching Book

Not only will it help you to pronounce individual words, it will also help with comprehension, increase your vocabulary and most importantly, help you to perfect those Chinese tones!

HACK – Tongue Twister in Chinese is 绕口令 (rào kǒu lìng).

If you search on the web there are lots of websites with lists of Chinese tongue twisters.

One of the best places to search is on YouTube as you will be able to hear as well as read the tongue twisters.

Chinese Tongue Twister #1sì shì sì 四是四

Chinese Tongue Twister #2chī pútáo 吃葡萄

Chinese Tongue Twister #3 bābǎi biāobīng 八百标兵

Chinese Tongue Twister #4 é 鹅

Chinese Tongue Twister #5 liù shū hé liù jiù 六叔和六舅

Chinese + English = Chinglish 😲 You Must See To Believe Thumbnail

Chinese + English = Chinglish 😲 You Must See To Believe

Chinglish – Sometimes you have to see it to believe it. You will be amazed at some of these language mishaps that are made when translating to Chinese.

Being able to hear the words pronounced properly will definitely be able to help you perfect your recital!

It’s important if you want to be able to impress the locals in China.

Another reason to search YouTube for tongue twister videos are for the really bad attempts at saying them!

Some of them had me laughing out loud.

Before we teach you some popular Chinese Tongue Twisters, check out our Immersion Specialist Jane who can reach speeds we can only dream of!

5 of the Best Chinese Tongue Twisters

Chinese Tongue Twister #1 – sì shì sì 四是四

Chinese Tongue Twister - sì shì sì 四是四

四是四,十是十,十四是十四,四十是四十;
谁把十四说“十适”,就打他十四;
谁把四十说“适十”,就打他四十

sì shì sì, shí shì shí, shísì shì shísì, sìshí shì sìshí;
shéi bǎ shísì shuō “shíshì”, jiù dǎ tā shísì,
shéi bǎ sìshí shuō “shìshí”, jiù dǎ tā sìshí.

Translates to:

Four is four, ten is ten, fourteen is fourteen, forty is forty. 
If anyone pronounces “shísì” as “shíshì”, hit them fourteen times.
If anyone pronounces “sìshí” as “shìshí”, hit them forty times.

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Chinese Jokes // The Secret Tool to Learning Chinese You Overlooked

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Chinese Tongue Twister #2 – chī pútáo 吃葡萄

Chinese Tongue Twisters - chī pútáo 吃葡萄

吃葡萄吐葡萄皮儿,
不吃葡萄不吐葡萄皮儿。
吃葡萄不吐葡萄皮儿,
不吃葡萄倒吐葡萄皮儿。

chī pútáo tǔ pútáo pí ér,
bù chī pútáo bù tǔ pútáo pí ér.
chī pútáo bù tǔ pútáo pí ér,
bù chī pútáo dào tǔ pútáo pí ér.

Translates to gibberish pretty much:

Eat grapes throw out their skins
don’t eat grapes don’t throw out their skins.
Eat grapes don’t throw out their skins,
don’t eat grapes throw out their skins.

Chinese Tongue Twister

Chinese Tongue Twister #3 – Bābǎi biāobīng 八百标兵

Chinese Tongue Twisters - Bābǎi biāobīng 八百标兵

八百标兵奔北,炮兵并排北边跑

炮兵怕把标兵碰,标兵怕碰炮兵炮。

Bābǎi biāobīng bēn běi, pàobīng bìngpái běibian pǎo

pàobīng pà bǎ biāobīng pèng, biāobīng pà pèng pàobīng pào.

Translates to:

Eight hundred model soldiers ran north, and the artillery ran side by side to the north.

The artillery is afraid of touching the artillery, the artillery is afraid of touching the artillery’s artillery.

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41 Ultimate Examples Of Chinese Slang 🤫 Speak Like The Locals

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Chinese Tongue Twister #4 – é 鹅

坡下立着一只鹅,坡下就是一条河。

宽宽的河,肥肥的鹅,鹅要过河,河要渡鹅,不知是鹅过河,还是河渡鹅。

Pō xià lìzhe yī zhǐ é, pō xià jiùshì yītiáo hé.

Kuān kuān de hé, féi féi de é, é yàoguò hé, hé yào dù é, bùzhī shì éguò hé, háishì hédù é.

Translates to a rather interesting story…

There is a goose standing under the slope, and there is a river below the slope.

The wide river and the fat geese, the geese have to cross the river, the river has to cross the geese, I don’t know whether the geese cross the river or the river goose.

Chinese Tongue Twister #5 – liù shū hé liù jiù 六叔和六舅

出南门,走六步,见着六叔和六舅,借我六斗六升好绿豆;过了秋,打了豆,还我六叔六舅六十六斗六升好绿豆

Chū nán mén, zǒu liù bù, jiànzhe liù shū hé liù jiù, jiè wǒ liù dòu liù shēng hǎo lǜdòu; guòle qiū, dǎle dòu, huán wǒ liù shū liù jiù liùshíliù dòu liù shēng hǎo lǜdòu.

Translates to:

Out of the south gate, I walked six steps and saw my six uncles and six uncles. Six uncles and six uncles lent me six buckets and six litres of good green beans. In the autumn, the beans were harvested, and I gave my six uncles and six uncles, six buckets and six litres of good green beans.

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14 Chinese TV Shows for Practicing Your Chinese (in 2022)

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That’s our guide to 5 of our favourite Chinese tongue twisters. How many did you know?

Not easy are they!?

Do you know anymore? If so why not drop a comment below and share it with us. We’ll include our favourites in the blog


BONUS | Enjoy studying topics like this? Then why not check out some of our favourite Japanese Tongue Twisters? You’ll notice a crossover with the Chinese and Japanese alphabet too!


Chinese Tongue Twister – FAQ’s

How do you say Tongue Twister in Chinese?

Tongue Twister in Chinese is 绕口令 (rào kǒu lìng).

Can I learn Chinese Tongue Twisters as a non-native speaker?

Absolutely, learning things like humour in Chinese and tongue twisters are a great way to understand the language and culture of China.

Where are good places to learn Chinese Tongue Twisters?

Social Media is always good for learning things like this. Try Instagram, YouTube and Tiktok.

What is a fun Chinese tongue twister to learn?

This is a favourite one with Chinese natives:

吃葡萄吐葡萄皮儿,

不吃葡萄不吐葡萄皮儿。

吃葡萄不吐葡萄皮儿,

不吃葡萄倒吐葡萄皮儿。

chī pútáo tǔ pútáo pí ér,

bù chī pútáo bù tǔ pútáo pí ér.

chī pútáo bù tǔ pútáo pí ér,

bù chī pútáo dào tǔ pútáo pí ér.

Translates to gibberish pretty much:

Eat grapes throw out their skins

don’t eat grapes don’t throw out their skins.

Eat grapes don’t throw out their skins,

don’t eat grapes throw out their skins.

What is the famous Chinese tongue twister including numbers?

This tongue twister is well known with foreigners who learn Mandarin because it shows the fun we have when trying to pronounce numbers that sound similar.

四是四,十是十,十四是十四,四十是四十;

谁把十四说“十适”,就打他十四;

谁把四十说“适十”,就打他四十

sì shì sì, shí shì shí, shísì shì shísì, sìshí shì sìshí;

shéi bǎ shísì shuō “shíshì”, jiù dǎ tā shísì,

shéi bǎ sìshí shuō “shìshí”, jiù dǎ tā sìshí.

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