It’s Friday night and I leave for Pre-Departure Orientation (PDO) on Monday. This past week has been incredibly busy. In addition to cramming last minute Arabic vocabulary, choosing host family gifts, and packing my luggage, I was lucky to spend this week doing one of my favorite things: volunteering with refugees. Every summer, Interfaith Action … Continue reading A Rewarding Last Week in Austin… T-3 Days until my NSLI-Y Adventure!
With the first week of summer underway, I find myself sitting in a cozy log cabin overlooking a gurgling stream. We are on a week long family vacation at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. The nature here is absolutely beautiful, and the best thing, in my opinion, is the abundance of snow up in … Continue reading Arabic, Snow, and the First Week of Summer Vacation!
A few weeks ago, I wrote about the connections between Arabic and my mother tongue, Hindi. Today, I thought it would be fun to talk about the links between Arabic and the Romance languages, especially Spanish. There is an extensive history of the Arabic influence on Spanish, due to the Islamic conquest of the Iberian … Continue reading Arabic and the Romance Languages
I decided to make another Arabic video today, so that I can practice what I have been learning these past weeks. I am definitely still working on my accent and my sentences are very brief and childish, but I thought it would be fun to chart my growth as I continue to learn on my … Continue reading Arabic Update: What I have been Learning
As I have been moving along with my NSLI-Y Pre-Program course and my independent Arabic studies, I can’t help noticing the intricate interconnectedness between Arabic and my own language: Hindi. I have grown up speaking Hindi with my family, and a few years ago, I taught myself how to read and write in the Hindi … Continue reading Finding Common Ground between Arabic and Hindi
I have spent the week learning from Hanane and continuing my own studies using Alif Baa. Here's my attempt to introduce and talk about my self in Shaami (Levantine) colloquial Arabic. Enjoy! 🙂 Request to my Arabic speaking friends: I really want to improve, so I would love it if you could give feedback in the comments … Continue reading A Daring Attempt…
“Ma ismuka?” I asked my Syrian friend’s little brother, expecting him to answer with his name. He looked at me, confused. I had just made a big Arabic learner faux pas: dialect confusion. As I had learned a while ago, there are two most common types of Arabic: colloquial and literary. Literary Arabic, or Fus’Ha is … Continue reading الشامي, School, and a New Friendship
Music. To some, it is entertainment. To others, an escape from the world. To me, it is one of the best ways to learn a language. Throughout my years learning Spanish and French, as well as my more recent Arabic self-study, it has always been music that has provided the best supplement to my formal … Continue reading The Language of Music
Eleven weeks till Pre-Departure Orientations! I am so excited to say that I have officially started my Mandatory Pre-Program Language Course (MPPLC) for the NSLI-Y program! As you may know, prior to the actual study abroad experience, NSLI-Y students have to complete a 10 week online course in the target language, so that they can … Continue reading Pre-Program Studies Begin!
Last fall, I applied for a scholarship to study Arabic from the National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y). NSLI-Y is an organization funded by the U.S. Department of State, which sends high school students abroad on fully covered federal scholarships to study critical languages. The application and selection process took about six months but … Continue reading NSLI-Y: The Journey Begins