Different Ways to Learn Vocabulary Through Association

عَلاقة root: ع-ل-ق / noun / plural: علاقات or عَلائق / definition: association, relation, connection There are some words in your target language that will cling on in your memory and others that will dig in their heels and refuse to go any further than the “vaguely familiar” section of your brain. For those stubbornContinue reading “Different Ways to Learn Vocabulary Through Association”

Small but Useful Arabic Phrases That You Need To Know

مُفيد root: ف-ي-د / adjective / definition: useful, beneficial As much as most of us, as Arabic students, love to learn all sorts of complex and specific vocabulary, knowing the small, simple stuff that fills up sentences is really important too. So, below, I’ve made a fairly compact list of small but useful Arabic phrasesContinue reading “Small but Useful Arabic Phrases That You Need To Know”

The Best Arabic Podcast I’ve Found So Far

اِستِماع root: س-م-ع / verbal noun of form VIII / definition: listening Listening skills are essential to build when you’re learning a language. But for many students, it can be hard to find listening resources that are: (a) at the right level and (b) interesting enough to maintain your focus.

The Dialect Dilemma

مُعْضِلة root: ع-ض-ل / noun / plural: مُعضلات or مَعاضِل / definition: dilemma Imagine studying a language for years in a classroom. You can give presentations and write essays in that language (with moderate reliance on the dictionary), and you can read newspaper articles and understand the news (with, realistically, slightly more reliance on saidContinue reading “The Dialect Dilemma”

The Importance of Getting Things Wrong

خَطَأ root: خ-ط-ء / noun / plural: أخطاء / definition: mistake, error It’s happening again. A wave of fear crashes down mercilessly upon the trembling students. Eyes dart desperately, frantically, around the room. One student scrambles out of class, mumbling something about needing the bathroom. The sky darkens. Another pretends to drop their pen asContinue reading “The Importance of Getting Things Wrong”

Treasures in Translation

تَرجَمة root: ت-ر-ج-م / noun / plural: تَراجِم / definition: translation Last week, a friend and I visited this charming little coffee shop in Central London. Maybe it was the dimly-lit, cosy atmosphere or maybe it was the ludicrously overpriced hot chocolate that elicited some serious life contemplation, but either way: as Arabic graduates, ourContinue reading “Treasures in Translation”

How to Use (and Love) the Hans Wehr Dictionary

قاموس root: ق-م-س / noun / plural: قَواميس / definition: dictionary If I had started this blog for the purpose of sharing only a single post, it would be this one. You would only have to be studying Arabic for a short while before you’d hear the name “Hans Wehr” flying at you from allContinue reading “How to Use (and Love) the Hans Wehr Dictionary”

The Hardest Advice to Give… And Take

نَصيحة root: ن-ص-ح / noun / plural: نَصائِح / definition: (piece of) advice The hardest advice to give is probably the one that you have to give yourself—which is why I have (…reluctantly) forced myself to write this out and confront the truth eyes-to-screen.

Four Simple Tips to Improve Your Essay Writing Skills in Arabic

مَقالة root: ق-و-ل / noun / plural: مَقالات /definition: essay, article So, you’ve studied Arabic for a while now. Simple sentences are old news (i.e. you’re silently pleading for your teacher not to go over jumlah ismiyyah yet again) and you’ve got a decent collection of relevant words all memorised. So you’re all set whenContinue reading “Four Simple Tips to Improve Your Essay Writing Skills in Arabic”

How Should I Begin?

بِداية root: ب-د-ء / noun / plural: بدايات / definition: beginning, start Starting is always the most difficult part, really: whether writing a blog or learning a language. Thankfully, the days of using flashcards to learn the Arabic alphabet (and practising pronouncing ع and ح until my throat ached) are tucked away around five-years-deep inContinue reading “How Should I Begin?”