Arabic at Home – 6 takeaways
We had the first ‘Chat over tea session” exclusively for Arabically Lego Club members with Samayah (insta handle: mama.teaches.Arabic). It was a short and crisp session just like a strong cup of tea and crispy snacks loaded with great takeaways and beneficial resources for busy yet inspiring moms who want their children to connect and create that long-lasting bond with Arabic.
Samayah is a student of Arabic for the last 15yrs, loves Arabic Poetry, and is also a أم (mother) of three boys, the eldest being 6 years old. He is a school-going boy which means loads of school and homework to tackle. Samayah takes advantage of small pockets of time to add Arabic on the go while going to school, masjid, in the park (في الحديقة), and at home (في البيت). Hmm heard of it somewhere? Sounds familiar?? Yes!!! These are our lego club themes as well. She reads the story aloud while going to school to impart listening skills and throws small questions here and there like ما هذا, ما معنى
So does the parent need to be fluent in Arabic before teaching the kid? The answer is a simple, no. It can be a fun learning process together. Though Samayah is a student of Arabic she still comes across unknown words for which she refers to the dictionary and has sticky notes around the book which is helpful for the mom and kid.
Choose a book according to the level of the kid with good illustrations to engage the child Does a good day in Arabic mean hours and hours of reading Arabic books, listening to Arabic, and writing? A good day with Arabic need not be for long hours with all 4 skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills). As long as the child is exposed to Arabic and is happy, little but consistently is a great step forward. The pace doesn’t matter. Make your motto “Little is more”.
There will be times when the child doesn’t show interest. Children love rewards and appreciation so have sticker charts, encourage them and give positive feedback to keep that streak going. Create the environment by sending them to study centers, and mosques or setting up physical playgroups with like-minded people so they are always motivated and keen to keep the momentum going. Another great way to bond is to take out some time for a one-on-one book reading.
Here are some key takeaways from our online session with Samayah!
- Buy high-quality Arabic books
- Try to maintain the enthusiasm
- Even if the journey is messy keep going. Even 5 mins a day is great
- Make mistakes, have fun and admit it
- Do not translate word to word. Don’t expect the kids to understand each and every word
- Five to six unknown words on a page are normal. So choose the book according to the level of the child.
Arabic resources mentioned in the talk :
Calliou in Arabic: https://youtube.com/channel/UCo7LBgG3xzPxScHi0OpNbqQ
Adam Wa mishmash: https://youtube.com/c/AdamWaMishmish
Reading Growth book series: https://www.yesmeen.ca/products/reading-growth-series-سلسلة-نمو-القراءة?variant=42143526387966
Arabic Resources Reviews by Samayah:vhttps://www.instagram.com/mama.teaches.Arabic
Wahat el Hekayat elibrary (with Arabically discount):