'Ni Hao?' Sasha Obama Speaks Chinese To Hu Jintao

Like thousands of other American students, Sasha Obama is studying Chinese in her grade school. This week, the Obamas' youngest daughter got a chance to practice her Chinese with a particularly prominent White House guest.

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SCOTT SIMON, host:

Like thousands of other American students, Sasha Obama is studying Chinese in her grade school. So this week when a man from China visited her parents, nine-year-old Sasha had the chance to brush up her language skills with a native speaker.

Ben Rhodes, deputy national security advisor, told reporters that Sasha practiced some Mandarin phrases with President Hu Jintao following the ceremonies to welcome him to the White House. Not every child has the opportunity to try out their first phrases of Chinese with the President of China, said Mr. Rhodes. I think that speaks to there is an interest in the United States and China, and a desire to get to know the country better.

Will Sasha Obama now get extra credit for speaking to the President of China without relying on the State Department interpreter?

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