About Nathan Thomas

Nathan Thomas is the marketing coordinator at Hutong School, a frequently lost New Zealander in Shanghai and the author of Intrepid Times travel blog.

How An Internship in China Can Change Your Life – Hutong School Interns In Their Own Words

Since you’re reading this, it means you've probably already done some research, or at least have a good idea about the benefits of doing an internship abroad in China. You know that doing an internship in China looks great on your CV, gets you a foot in the door of a huge and important economy, and that China is [...]

By |March 15th, 2016|Hutong School, Internship China, Interview|1 Comment

Chinese Pronunciation – How to Avoid Tripping Over Unfamiliar Sounds

There are many sounds that exist in Chinese which do not have an easy equivalent in English, French, Italian or other common European languages. Wrestling with these sounds can be a big challenge for language learners and, in my experience, leads to many blank stares in small Chinese restaurants as the confused locals struggle [...]

Big News From Hutong School

Hutong School Turns 10 - So You Can Save 10% On All Our Programs for the Next 10 Days! Well, actually we turned 10 a few months ago... ... BUT we wanted to wait until our brand new website was ready and working before we shared this with you. We've gone back over the first [...]

By |February 24th, 2016|Chinese Classes, Hutong School, Internship China|0 Comments

Happy Chinese New Year – Words of Wisdom for the Year of the Fire Monkey

The year of the fire monkey kicked off with neither bang nor spark. No fireworks were set off in Shanghai for the year of the monkey due to the strict instructions of the government. Pollution levels being what they are, throwing more soot and smoke into the sky is not considered a good idea. On New [...]

By |February 16th, 2016|Chinese Culture, Fun Facts, Holidays and Festivals|0 Comments

立春 – Lìchūn, The Beginning of Spring in China

Spring in China has now officially sprung. To mark the occasion Hutong fixture and Beijing local Lao Guo has written an article about what to eat and how to stay healthy during this time of year. See below for the original article in Chinese, and an English summary. ​ 立春 今年立春是在2018年3月20日星期二。 立春不仅是农历二十四节气中的第一个节气,立春是从天文上来划分的,而在自然界、在人们的心目中,春意味着风和日暖,鸟语花香;春也意味着万物生长。  立春期间,气温、日照、降雨,开始趋于上升、增多。但这一切对全国大多数地方来说仅仅是春天的前奏。 立春后气温回升,但在强冷空气影响的间隙期,偏南风频数增加,并伴有明显的气温回升过程。 立春是一个时间点,也可以是一个时间段。说的是东风送暖,大地开始解冻。 立春的传统饮食: [...]

By |February 16th, 2016|Chinese Culture, Fun Facts, Holidays and Festivals|0 Comments

How to Survive Your First Day in China: A Full Guide, from the Airport to Your Hotel Room!

It happened. You’ve arrived.


The Amazing Double Meaning of Chinese Numbers

In 2003 Chengdu based Sichuan Airlines made a CN¥2.33 million investment. Their purchase: the phone number 8888 8888.

By |December 30th, 2015|Chinese Culture, Chinese Language, Fun Facts|0 Comments

10 Wise Chéngyǔ to Make You Sound Like Confucius

Chéngyǔ, 成语, literally ‘set phrases,

By |December 10th, 2015|Chinese Language|0 Comments

10 Free Resources to Help You Get Your Head Around Chinese Grammar

Chinese grammar is actually one of the easiest aspects

By |November 24th, 2015|Chinese Language, Tips and Guides|1 Comment

“You Can’t Do That in China!” Essential Chinese Etiquette Guide for Students & Tourists in China

"You can’t do that in China!” etiquette guides for foreigners in China often verge on the hysterical when declaring what you cannot do in China. In reality you’re not going to get deported or run out of town by an angry mob for making a minor cultural faux pas. As a foreigner in China you’ll already be regarded as an alien, so strange behavior from you is positively expected.

By |November 16th, 2015|Chinese Culture, Chinese Language, Tips and Guides|3 Comments