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 Post subject: Learning Arabic - basic!
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:46 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:05 am
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My DD is keen to teach herself basic Arabic (at least alphabet etc) before uni in 2013. Can anyone recommend a good book? Or course?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 9:36 am 
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Take her on holiday to Egypt. Luxor is nice. Sit in a cafe on the pavement and you will soon attract a hord of polite, well educated unemployed young men who will be happy to chat to her in English :D and Arabic and teach her some basic conversation !


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 3:49 pm 
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Location: Birmingham
Seriously, I know that was tongue in cheek but colloquial Egyptian bears scant resemblance to the Arabic spoken in many other parts of the Arab world.

There are lots of Arabic courses available in large cities throughout summer, as well as regular classes throughout the year and supervised teaching trips to places like Tunisia in order to learn Arabic.

There are also many online programmes.

I keep getting emails - at least 2 a week - informing me of Arabic courses for beginners, but unfortunately don't have the time right now to take them. You can pm me if you still haven't found anything :)


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:15 pm 
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Location: Birmingham
September seems to be the time of year for the start of many Arabic courses, but I assume that might not be suitable if uni is around the corner. There are the other options that um suggested such as online courses. If she just wants to get to grips with the basics such as the alphabet there are online resources such as :
http://learnarabicfree.info/beginners/
Yo* Tub* (video sharing website) has lots of songs and videos for the Arabic alphabet that my kids love singing along too - it is the arabic alphabet itself that is the initial struggle but once you master it and how the diacritical signs add the vowels, it is quite straightforward (sort of :shock: ).

Linguaphone and Rosetta stone offer courses too : I bought the linguaphone pack many years ago and spent a lot of time telling everyone 'Hello, my name is Hasan Morad' until I pursued the rest of the course.

The best way is definitely to go abroad to learn it on some of the intensive courses. I may be biased, but I would definitely recommend Egypt or Syria for this and NOT Tunisia or Morocco and the like. Their accent is so difficult to understand by other Arab countries. I agree that Egyptian colloquial Arabic is different from standard modern Arabic but that is how real people speak. It is also the most widely understood dialect across Arab countries. Besides, whatever the accent, they all read and write the standard way.

Now if you want the most authentic and classical arabic, then place to really go is Yemen - but I wouldn't really recommend that :wink:

UmSusu

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:18 pm 
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Thank you all so much x


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 8:07 pm 
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At the moment, I wouldn't recommand Syria either due to the appalling events taking place over there. :( But it is true that in more peaceful times, this is a good destination to go for Arabic courses... with Egypt as previously mentioned.

However, to have a good grasp of classical Arabic, no need to go as far away as the tricky thing with Arabic is that you learn a language that unfortunately many people are not able to speak fluently (except for Arabic teachers and people well-versed in the Arabic grammar) though they understand it very well (language used for news, speeches, in the newspapers, etc).
So it is not at all like going for example to Germany because you are learning German and you need a 'immersion' in the language. You would have such an immersion in Arabic course for foreigners in Arabic countries but you have just the same here in the UK.

There are some course in this institute having branches in different big cities in the UK ( I am not advertising nor recommanding this company particularly. I never attended a course there. I've just heard about it and people who attended courses there seemed happy. I guess that quality of course is mainly down to the quality of the teacher):
http://www.arabic4adults.org.uk/
maybe they have summer courses? Or you mentionned uni in 2013. So may be your DD has still one year to have her first taste of Arabic?

A big city like Birmingham has also Arabic courses in a language institute like Brasshouse Language Center (big center which teaches many many languages!). So maybe you could check all the language institutes in your city (we don't know where you are based)?

However, I wouldn't omit to go to the local library to see if they have some books with tapes for beginners.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 9:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:43 am
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It is better to learn from an Arabic school/course rather than doing it herself with books or an online course, at least initially. My DC go to one, and they use the "Gateway to Arabic" series of books (available on Amazon).


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:15 am 
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Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:25 pm
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Egypt is a good place to go if you want to learn first hand.

Will start you off here for free!!! :lol:

Here goes the Arabic alphabet:
A (ALIF)
B (BEH) as in the word bet, not beat.
T (TEH) as in terrace.
TH (THEH) rhymes with te in terrace.

Easy language to master once you grasp the correct pronunciation of the Arabic alphabet. And if, as some have said, going abroad is a no-no for you then I would suggest searching on-line for an established tutor; preferably Egyptian, as there are so many different dialects used in different countries that are not true to the correct pronunciation of the Arabic language.

Good luck with your search :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:37 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:43 am
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zeinab wrote:
Will start you off here for free!!! :lol:

Here goes the Arabic alphabet:
A (ALIF)
B (BEH) as in the word bet, not beat.
T (TEH) as in terrace.
TH (THEH) rhymes with te in terrace.




The Arabic alphabet goes as Alif, Bah, Tah though. I think the version you give is possibly Persian or Urdu?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:09 am 
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No, it's Egyptian actually. :)


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