Maruko Introduces Herself!

September 26, 2010

How can you study this lesson?

* Listen to the video below several time. Accustomize your ears to Arabic.

* Study the chart below to learn new words/understand the structure of Arabic sentence/some grammar points.

* Don’t just learn words separately. Focus on the context and how words arranged and used together.

Vocabulary notes:

Hello/مرحباً -  friends/أصدقاء

يا/ (used for calling people before the names, like hey or O’)

اسم/name

سـ/comes attached to verbs meaning will.

أقص/relate -   عليكم/upon you  –   كيف/how

نشأت/I grew up

و/and

مع/with

من/who or whom

أعيش/I live

في/in

قرية/village (female noun)

جميلة/ beautiful (adjective is feminine because the noun described is. masculine of beautiful would be جميل )

هادئة/ quiet (adjective is again feminine. masculine is هادئ )

حين/ when

كنت/ I was

الصف/ grade (masculine noun)

الثالث/ third (masculine adjective)

الابتدائي/ primary (school).

صغيرة/ small (feminine because it describes Maruko)

الحجم/ size (masculine noun)

بدوت/ I looked

مثل/ like

كرة/ ball (feminine noun)

صغيرة/ small (feminine adjective – masculine is صغير )

سميت/ I was called

عائلة/ family

مكونة/ consist of

ستة / six

أفراد/ members

جد/ grandfather

جدة/ grandfather

بابا/ dad ( this word is kinda slang and the following one too)

ماما/ mom

أخت/ sister

الكبرى/ eldest (feminine adjective)

أنا/ I

يعطي/ he gives

أحد/ someone

شيء/ something

إعلان/ announcement

معركة/ battle

بطولية/ heroic

بيت/ house

وصلت/ I arrived


Structure notes:

my/ in Arabic my the first person possessive pronoun is expressed with the ي which comes attached to things you own like: (أصدقائياسمي - عائلتي - جدي - جدتي - أختي)

our/ in Arabic this possessive pronoun is expressed with the نا which comes attached to the word of the things you own like: (بيتنا)

Not like English, adjective comes after the described thing in Arabic ( noun + adjectives) for examples:

(الصف الثالث- قرية جميلة - كرة صغيرة - أختي الكبرى)

Adjectives follow the gender of the noun they describe if the noun is masculine then the adjective must be masculine too and if the noun is feminine then the adjective must be feminine too. examples ( الصف الثالثقرية جميلة).

Keep listening to this one minute clip until you grasp all the sentences! DON’T try to memorize these sentences! Just analysis them and see how the language sounds and feels!! Try to introduce yourself in a way similar to Maruko’s!

Fourth Lesson: Vowels (2)

June 27, 2010

By sifo-z11s

Greetings my dear friends!

Last time we studied long vowels and learned that they are long a/e/o sound comes after consonant letters. However some times the a/e/o sound in words are not long enough to use long vowels for them. Check the words below for example:

Summer = سمر

Tender = تندر

Put = بت

When the a/e/o sound in the words are not long enough we use short vowels instead of long vowels. As we said in the previous lesson; short vowels are diacritics which appear above or below consonant letters and called motions (harakat : حركات) in Arabic.

Shot Vowels:

1- Fatha (فتحة).

The first example above (summer) there is an a sound after the s, but it is short and slight. This is the first short vowel we have in Arabic which is fatha.

Fatha is a small diagonal line which appears above the letters to indicate short a sound.

Example:

سَمَر

سَ


<——->

2- Kasrah (كسرة).

In the second example above (tender) there is an e sound after the s, but it is short and slight. This is the second short vowel we have in Arabic which is kasrah.

Kasrah is a small diagonal line which appears below the letters to indicate short e sound.

Example:

تِندر

تِ


<———>

3 Damma (ضمة).

In the third example above (put) there is an o sound after the p, but it is short and slight. This is the third short vowel we have in Arabic which is called damma.

Damma is a loop over which looks like a comma, appears above letters to indicate a short o sound.

Example

بُت

بُ


<————>

New learners always need the short vowels illustrated for them to help them to pronounce the words correctly and that’s what I am going to do God willing.

Try compare these pairs below and try to pronounce them loudly to get the difference between long and short vowels :

Sami – سامي  #  Summer – سَمَر

Tina – تينا # Tender تِندَر

Boon – بون  #   Put =بُت

I hope the difference between long and short vowels is now clear as it is important thing. You really don’t want to misspell the words in Arabic, for most spelling mistakes in Arabic happens when people tend to put long vowels everywhere! As we always say, to master this new information you need to take more time in practice that the amount you took to study the lesson! It’s the only right way to truly get it. So, here is today’s exercise!

Exercise:

Think of any word in your language and determine if the vowels in this word are short vowels or long vowels. If they are long then write them in Arabic letters with (ا – ي – و ). If they are short then write the vowels correctly under or above the letters.

Here are some English words written in Arabic letters with the correct vowels illustrated:

Jack = جاك

Shanon = شانُن

Prince =برِنس

Brad =براد

Tom =توم

Robert =روبِرت

Sarah = سارَه

Please leave your answers in the comment section and I will be glad to correct any mistakes :)

Lastly, this is a video I made with an exciting short vowels song and it summarizes the whole lesson!


Third Lesson: Vowels (1)

June 15, 2010

By |-Heartsdream-|

Hello again my dear students!

I hope you are as excited as myself to learn a new lesson for Better Arabic. Before we get into this lesson, it will be very helpful to study the first lesson if you did not do that already or revise it to be easy for you to grasp the new information. Today’s lesson is about vowels.

In Arabic language there are two kind of vowels:

1- Long Vowels. (Basically they are 3 of the Arabic letters we studied in the previous lesson).

2- Shot Vowels. (They are 3 diacritics which appear either above or below consonant letters).

Long vowels are called lengthening letters (حروف المد : horoof almad), while short vowels are called motions (حركات : harakat ).

Today our focus is only on long vowels.

—————————

The three long vowels are :

ا  - ي  - و


* When the first long vowel ( ا ) comes after; for example, d sound it will be pronounced as in the English word dance.

This English word looks like this in Arabic letters:

دانس = dance

The same (long a) sound must be pronounced when this long vowel appears after any consonant letter.

————————

* When the second long vowel ( ي ) comes after; for example, d sound it will be pronounced as in the English word december.

The English word looks like this in Arabic letters:

ديسمبر = december

The same (long e) sound must be pronounced when this long vowel appears after any consonant letter.

———————-

* When the third long vowel ( و ) comes after; for example, d sound it will be pronounced as in the English word doom.

The English word looks like this in Arabic letters:

دوم = doom

The same (long o) sound must be pronounced when this long vowel appears after any consonant letter.

————————

This is all about Long Vowels! Could not be easy, right? Think of any names in your language which have long a/e/o sounds and write them down with the help of this virtual Arabic keyboard to practice. I will give you some examples with English names which includes our dear long vowels!

Sami = سامي

Tina = تينا

Boone =بون

Sarah = ساره

Lena = لينا

Come on! Don’t just sit there and read all this. You must practice to master. Please leave a comment with the names you thought of  and write them in Arabic. Remember, they must contain long vowels!

Second Lesson: Arabic Writing

June 10, 2010

Previously, we learned Arabic letters in isolated form. Today, we will learn how to joint Arabic letters together to form words. Arabic writing system is really not that complicated, it’s just letters are connected within words. Here are some facts which will decode this enigma for you:

* It’s not enough to learn how to write letters in isolated form. You have to know how to write each letter in all 3 positions within a word: at the beginning and middle and end.

* Letters shape differs according to its position within words.

* There are some letters which can’t be connected to any letters which follow them. (رزدذو)

* Only the first part of these letters is drawn when they appear at the beginning or middle of a word (ضص -عغ -خ -حج - سش - م).

* Other letters turn to look like only a stick out small signals when they appear in the middle of a word ( س - ش - ث - ت - بن - ي) You can recognize the letters only through the number or the place of the dots of these letters. These letters will appear like this within a word:

سشتثبنيسـ

* Some letters have totally different shape in some positions (هــهــه - ككك)

* When the letter ل is followed by the letter ا it has special shape: (لا) By the way this means no in Arabic! LA!

If we know how each letter looks like if it appears at the beginning or at the middle or at the end of a word, it will be easy for us to write and read words in Arabic.

In this table you will see all letters in all positions. The notes above will make you understand the changes in letters at every position!

Isolated End Middle Beginning

ا

ـا

ـا

ا

ب

ـب

ـبـ

بـ

ت

ـت

ـتـ

تـ

ث

ـث

ـثـ

ثـ

ج

ـج

ـجـ

جـ

ح

ـح

ـحـ

حـ

خ

ـخ

ـخـ

خـ

د

ـد

ـد

د

ذ

ـذ

ـذ

ذ

ر

ـر

ـر

ر

ز

ـز

ـز

ز

س

ـس

ـسـ

سـ

ش

ـش

ـشـ

شـ

ص

ـص

ـصـ

صـ

ض

ـض

ـضـ

ضـ

ط

ـط

ـطـ

طـ

ظ

ـظ

ـظـ

ظـ

ع

ـع

ـعـ

عـ

غ

ـغ

ـغـ

غـ

ف

ـف

ـفـ

فـ

ق

ـق

ـقـ

قـ

ك

ـك

ـكـ

كـ

ل

ــل

ـلـ

لـ

م

ـم

ـمـ

مـ

ن

ـن

ـنـ

نـ

ه

ـه

ـهـ

هـ

و

ـو

ـو

و

ي

ـي

ـيـ

يـ

I know this needs lots of practice. You can try to joins letters together even if they don’t make sense just to learn how each letters look like in each position.

Come on! bring your notebook and try your handwriting! Have fun! :)

First Lesson: Introduction to Arabic [Letters]

June 5, 2010


Hello World!

This is our first Arabic lesson. We are going to learn Arabic language from scratch, so if you are familiar with Arabic letters then you can skip this lesson. Arabic letters are totally different from Latin or other European languages letters in regard to their shape. Worse than that, there are new sounds which don’t exist in other languages. Don’t get panic. Just take your time and repeatedly try to hear and pronounce the letters as much as you can. You can do it and it’s going to be fairly easy if only you put some time in studying this easy and neat lesson. An advice for starters: don’t bother with your writing skills at this stage. What’s required from learners at the end of this lesson is to get familiar with the way letters sound and look! Writing lesson will come later on. Two facts you might like to know before get started:

  1. Arabic script is written from right to left.
  2. Arabic consists of 29 letters.

Meet the lovely Arabic letters!

The first column represents the letters. If the font is small, you can have a look at the picture at the beginning of the lesson where the letters are clearer. The second column displays the letters names. I wrote the names in English letters to be easy for you to read it at this stage. In the third column you can see the equivalent sound in English language. And lastly I give an example for each Arabic sound in English words.

Letter Name Sound Notes
ا
alif
a Like in the English word apple.
ب
baa
b Like in the English word back.
ت
taa
t like in the English word team.
ث
thaa
th Like in the English word three.
ج
jeem
j Like in the English word joke.
ح
haa
h This sound has no equivalent in English.
خ
khaa
kh This sound has no equivalent in English.
د
daal
d Like in the English word dance.
ذ
thaal
th Like in the English word throw.
ر
raa
r Like in the English word rock.
ز
zay
z Like in the English word zoo.
س
seen
s Like in the English word sea.
ش
sheen
sh Like in the English word shine.
ص
saad
s Like in the English word sun.
ض
daad
d This sound has no equivalent in English.
ط taa t This sound has no equivalent in English.
ظ
daa
d This sound has no equivalent in English.
ع
ayn
a’ This sound has no equivalent in English.
غ
ghayn
gh This sound has no equivalent in English.
ف
faa
f Like in the English word flower.
ق
qaaf
q This sound has no equivalent in English.
ك kaaf k Like in the English word kiss.
ل
laam
l Always pronounced light like in lips except for the word ALLAH (God).
م
meem
m Like in the English word milk.
ن
noon
n Like in the English word Nice.
هـ
haa
h like in the English word house.
و
wow
w like in the English word wind.
ي
yaa
y Like in the English word yard.
ء
hamza
? This sound has no equivalent in English.

As you can notice there are ten letters that have no equivalent in English which are:

(حخضط - ظ - عغقء).

However, I have put an equivalent to them in the sound column in the table. The best way to explain this is that these letters are similar to the pointed sounds, but are not the same. So the best way to learn these letters is by listening to them here.

You can find two youtube videos where you can learn Arabic alphabet in a fun and easy way here and here.

(They skip pronouncing one letter in the first video, try to figure it out!)

Exercise:

It is not enough to study. Practice is the best way to master the language! Here is a simple exercise to master Arabic letters. Think of any persons names in your language (Kathy – Micheal – Susan etc.) and write them in Arabic letters. Use this Arabic Keyboard to do this exercise.

Examples:

Kathy = كاثي

Micheal = مايكل

Susan = سوزان

Please leave your answers (name in your language + name in Arabic) in the comment section and I will be happy to correct any mistakes ;)


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