time order slide

The Time Word Order in Chinese structure is very different from that of English. Knowing how to tell the time in Chinese is very useful. Let’s begin with the vocabulary related to telling the time in Chinese.

Chinese Time Words

Here you can find the Chinese time words list.

Chinese characterPinyinEnglish
niányear
月
yuèmonth
日
date
hàodate
星期xīngqīweek
早上zǎoshangearly morning
上午shàngwǔlate morning
中午zhōngwǔnoon
下午xiàwǔafternoon
傍晚bàngwǎndusk
晚上wǎnshàngevening
半夜bànyèmidnight
清晨qīngchéndawn
diǎnhour
fēnminute
bànhalf
1/4 of an hour

What is the Chinese Time Word Order?

When we created this infographic, we gave a new name for this time order. We call it the “Time Order Slide”. The “slide” goes from the bigger time range to the smaller time range. For instance, if you would like to make an appointment at 3 pm on Thursday. There are three elements involved in this appointment, at 3 o’clock, PM and Thursday.

Let’s go down the “slide,” from big to small. First, the biggest time element is the one for Thursday, “one day, 24 hours”. Second, the time frame “PM” means from noon to midnight. Lastly, “3 o’clock” represents “one minute”. So, the correct time order in Chinese, following the time order slide, will be “Thursday, PM, 3 o’clock” which is “星期四 下午 三点。”

Telling Time in Chinese

Let’s use some examples to practice how to tell the time in Chinese.

1. I wake up at 6 am.

早上 六点 起床。Wǒ zǎoshang liù diǎn qǐchuáng.

2. See you tomorrow at noon.

明天 中午 见!Míngtiān zhōngwǔ jiàn!

3. I have a piano class at 7 pm this Tuesday.

这个星期二 晚上 七点 有钢琴课。Wǒ zhège xīngqī’èr wǎnshàng qī diǎn yǒu gāngqín kè.

4. The election day is November 3, 2020.

二〇二〇年 十一月 三日 是选举日。Èr líng èr líng nián shíyī yuè sān rì shì xuǎnjǔ rì.

Simplified Chinese Version Infographic

Time order in Chinese Simplified Chinese Version infographic

Traditional Chinese Version Infographic

Traditional Chinese Version Infographic

Chinese Time Word Order Can-do checklist

⃞        I can recognize time-related vocabulary, including year, month, date, day of the week, a period of time in a day, o’clock and minute, in Chinese.

⃞        I can recognize time-related vocabulary, including year, month, date, day of the week, a period of time in a day, o’clock and minute when people use them in a Chinese conversation.

⃞        I can say the year, month, date, day of the week, a period of time in a day, o’clock and minute, in Chinese.

⃞        I can write the year, month, date, day of the week, a period of time in a day, o’clock and minute, in pinyin/Chinese characters.

⃞        I can put time-related vocabulary in the correct order.

⃞        I can make an appointment in Chinese.

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2 Comments

  1. Hi Karen,

    I really like your great work, and it helps me a lot when I am preparing the teaching material. And I really appreciate that you created the traditional versions too. Just a little problem I saw from the traditional version of this post. On the right bottom of it, it should be “點”. ^^

    Many thanks!
    Best wishes,
    Beryl

    1. Hi Beryl,

      Thank you for your feedback. I have updated the new one! Please redownload it. And I am glad to know you found our infographics useful. We will keep making more! 🙂

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