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Basic Chineasy Building Blocks.png
Founder(s)ShaoLan Hsueh
CEOShaoLan Hsueh
IndustryOnline education, Chinese Language, Graphic Design, Education
ServicesSecond language acquisition (Chinese)
Launched14 February 2013; 7 years ago (2013-02-14)
Current statusOnline and publications

Chineasy is an Internet startup created with the purpose of teaching characters, created by the entrepreneur Shaolan Hsueh.[1] For visual learners the human brain is able to memorize information better if it is put into a visual context. The approach is to learn Chinese characters with the help of illustrations to help memorize Chinese characters better. The 2014 book Chineasy: The New Way to Read Chinese contains about 400 characters.[2] It was based on her 2013 TED talk [3] and funded via a crowdfunding campaign through Kickstarter.[4]

While the book introduces common Chinese characters, it does not teach pronunciation or grammar, and thus does not teach how to read or use the language, although it does use voice recordings for the users to mimic.[5]

Set of characters[edit]

Chineasy teaches sometimes traditional and sometimes simplified forms. Hsueh argued that traditional and simplified forms of Chinese still share a great number of characters, and in real life – just as in the case of British English and American English – you will come across both forms. Where they differ, she shows the other version as well.[6] Chineseasy Everyday teaches over 400 of the most used and useful Chinese characters, phrases and sentences. In addition to learning characters the learner will also experience many stories that explain Chinese customs and culture.


Chineasy has been widely featured in the press, including the Financial Times,[7] the Wall Street Journal,[8] Time magazine,[9] and National Public Radio.[10] It won Wallpaper’s 2014 Design Award.[11] Hsueh's book uses illustrations and storytelling.[12] Characters are illustrated by various illustrators including Noma Bar.[13]


  1. ^ "Want to speak Chinese? It's Chineasy, says ShaoLan Hsueh". Metro. 2014-03-13. Retrieved 2017-10-05.
  2. ^ Chineasy: The New Way to Read Chinese (Flexibound ed.). HarperCollins Publishers. ISBN 978-0062332097.
  3. ^ "Learn to read Chinese...with ease". May 5, 2013.
  4. ^ "Chineasy: The easiest way to learn Chinese". July 23, 2013.
  5. ^ Victor Mair (March 19, 2014). "Chineasy? Not". Language Log. Retrieved April 14, 2017.
  6. ^ Murphy, Siobhan (March 13, 2014). "How Chineasy inventor ShaoLan Hsueh used beautiful design to decode Mandarin and Cantonese".
  7. ^ Berwick, Isabel (August 9, 2013). "Learn Mandarin the Chineasy way".
  8. ^ Wolfe, Alexandra (March 14, 2014). "A New Way to Learn Chinese".
  9. ^ "Chineasy: A New Way to Learn Chinese Characters". Time. Retrieved 2017-02-19.
  10. ^ "These Cute Images Make Reading Chinese Characters 'Chineasy'". Retrieved 2017-02-19.
  11. ^ Wallpaper* Design Awards (January 15, 2014). "Wallpaper* Design Awards Life Enhancer of the Year – Wallpaper*".
  12. ^ "Chineasy illustrated characters designed to make learning Chinese easy". Dezeen. Retrieved 2015-10-23.
  13. ^ Wainwright, Oliver (2014-03-26). "Chineasy peasy: Noma Bar brings fun and colour to Chinese characters". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2017-10-05.