Top positive review
13 of 17 people found this helpful
Mandarin Chinese for kids, a few words at a time.
on April 9, 2012
Ni Hao Kai-Lan (Hello, Kai-Lan) is a kid's show about a young girl, her paternal grandfather, and her animal friends. Each episode deals with a minor problem the characters deal with, usually hurt feelings, and one of the characters thinks back to the incident that caused the problem. Once the characters figure out what went wrong, they have a song and then carry on. There's usually one or two new Mandarin Chinese words per episode and the standard "ni hao" (hello), "xiè xiè" (thank you), and "zài jiàn" (goodbye) in every episode. Unfortunately, the words are only pronounced rather than written out in characters or pinyin. I end up referencing the Wikipedia page that lists the episodes ([...]) to get the simplified characters and word listing.
From a parent's perspective, I didn't really like the nonsensical parts like tickling Mr. Sun to wake him up or driving a train over flying bugs, but my kids loved it. The ideal audience is probably 1-4 year olds. It's also nice to finally have the series on a video streaming service (Netflix doesn't currently stream it).
As an aside, there are some Beanie Baby versions of the main characters on Amazon. Ty Beanie Baby - Kai-lan - Ni Hao Kai Lan