This research explores the understanding of Chinese words (commonly used in normal
surroundings) by Hong Kong children aged between 4 and 6 in their surrounding. Children
were interviewed and were given thirteen objects which they come across in their daily lives.
They were then invited to identify these objects, think of some related words and name their
functions. Findings show that there is no significant difference in scores on Chinese words
understanding of boys and girls. This indicates that children aged between 4 and 6 in Hong
Kong can identify Chinese words in their daily lives and understand their meanings. Many of
their parents (72%) and teachers (48%) have taught them these words before. However, not
many children (42%) are really willing to guess the meanings and pronunciations of words
they do not know. This shows that even children have the ability to read many words, though
their awareness of language is not very strong. This may hinder development of their reading
ability in the future. On the basis of the major results, this study makes some suggestions on
the basis of conclusions of the study.