Sagebook HK ChallengeAuthor’s Note: Sagebooks HK is sponsoring The Sagebooks Challenge as we chronicle Glow Worm (4) and I going through their series for the first time. I am also guest posting on their Sagebooks HK Blog where I will be providing a time tested tip and a fun activity to help support you and your child as you go through the sets.

Welcome to our 7th week going through the Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500 series with Glow Worm (4).

This week, we did really well and Glow Worm finished Book 1.3! He was very proud of himself (as he should be!)


Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500 is a series of 5 sets of 5 books that teach your children how to read the top 500 high frequency characters in children’s books. You can find out more here.


I am an ABC/T and speak Mandarin 85% of the time to my four children (8, 6, 4, 1). My husband, Hapa Papa, only speaks English. We homeschool bilingually in Chinese and English and my older two children have already gone through the Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500.

Glow Worm, (4) currently knows about 50 characters and this is the first time we are going through Sagebooks. He currently splits time between two Chinese preschools for 3 hours a day, 4 days a week.


My goal for this week was just to add a 3-4 new characters because I was anticipating Glow Worm needing a lot of review.


Glow Worm finished Book 1.3 as well as did two chapters in Book 1.4! I was really surprised because I wasn’t aiming for a lot of characters. Every time I aim high, I am rudely disappointed.


As usual, we did a lot of reading at kungfu and in the car. It’s become our thing to have Glow Worm read his 小書/xiao3 shu/little books/ in the car and it warms my cold, dark heart. This week, Cookie Monster (8) and Gamera (6) helped out because it is really difficult to read characters flipped in the rear view mirror. I am grateful my older kids are so useful, good sports, and so far ahead.


To make up for last week not taking any pictures, I’ve taken a few extra this week. I mean, wouldn’t you want to buy the set if it came with a fat baby?

Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500
Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500
Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500
Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500

Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500
Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500

This is Glow Worm reading Sagebooks HK Basic Chinese 500 Set 1 Book 3 Lesson 13.


Just like last week, Glow Worm is still having problems with 這/zhe4/this/, 起/qi3/rise/, 會/hui4/should/ and 裏/li3/inner/. He often looks at me with embarrassment but I try not to make a big deal out of it. I just tell him the character and review it a few times. He usually remembers during the session (so that’s an improvement), but he forgets the next day. This tells me it’s making it into his short term memory but not his long term memory.

Some Observations

Sometimes, I give hints about what a character could be before I tell Glow Worm what it is. For 起/qi3/, I would since the line, 當我們同在一起/dang wo3 men2 tong2 zai4 yi qi3/when we are together/ from the song, The More We Get Together. This helps him a lot and every time he sees the character, he’ll sing the line to help him remember. Occasionally, he associates 起 with 同/tong2/together/ and he’ll say, 同 then 起. I expect he’ll figure it out with time.

Sagebooks Challenge Application

How did your kid do this week? Still plodding along or did you take a break? Have you tried any of the activities on the Sagebooks HK Blog? Have you read the threads in the Sagebooks HK Parent Support Facebook Group? Let me know in the group (or the comments).

See you next week!

* I refer to the Sagebooks in this formula: Set#.Book#:Chapter#. So, if I am referring to the first set, book 3, and characters 14-16, it looks like: Book 1.3:14-16.