Yes yes yes, I went through the same journey with MSA although as you say, after a year I did totally get the shape and grammatical structure of the language – just could barely speak a word! I then focused on Lebanese Arabic at a great language school in Beirut called Saifi – and now I can speak to an advanced level. I WISH more Arabic teachers would just give up on the MSA – whenever I speak about this issue to people it's always Arabic people who disagree and say NO you must learn MSA even when they themselves probably forgot all the grammar years ago!

Yes yes yes, I went through the same journey with MSA although as you say, after a year I did totally get the shape and grammatical structure of the language – just could barely speak a word! I then focused on Lebanese Arabic at a great language school in Beirut called Saifi – and now I can speak to an advanced level. I WISH more Arabic teachers would just give up on the MSA – whenever I speak about this issue to people it's always Arabic people who disagree and say NO you must learn MSA even when they themselves probably forgot all the grammar years ago!


Reading is a much better way to gather new vocabulary than encountering new words out of context. In the Finbo the Whale story, for example, I finally got a grasp on spelling حوت (whale), which was a word I’d heard before but struggled with. Which letter H? ح or ه? Which letter T? ت or ط? By reading it several times in context, the correct spelling now just “looks right.”

The Prophet (saw) said that Arabism was not something passed by blood from father to son, but was in the language (and culture). He himself coming from what was described as an Adnani tribe, which was itself an ‘Arab tribe’ but not of ‘Arab’ origin – they were in effect Arabised Arabs. The only true ‘Arabs’ that can lay claim to an ‘ethnic Arabism’ if you like came from a small pocket in Yemen. Therefore, the majority of ‘Arabs’ are linguistic/cultural Arabs – although most don’t like knowing or being told such things.
I do have a question about arabic cultures. From my experience in Latin America learning Spanish, I have run into many very uncomfortable and almost dangerous incidents as a white, blue eyed, blond haired female. In Colombia, I got used to the constant whistling and cat calls, but there were still times when I got followed around or taken to a motel, without knowing that motels are only for having sex, or being hit on by a 60 year old man, who I was dependent on at one point and had no way to get out of the situation. At the end of the adventure, I survived and got to know a lot of wonderful people, fell in love and got a better understanding latin america.. However it has left me with an amount of respect for the unknown and a need to recover from the constant blows to my naivety.
In other words – your words, advices and thoughts about language and culture deeply touched my heart on this particular Friday morning 🙂 Hopefully for many more. These experiences have changed my life completely, and I’m so grateful that you’re sharing these thoughts, helping to establish a new image/mind set of what a type of experience learning a language could really be.
Learn Quran Academy was established in 2006 with the aim of teaching the Holy Quran from Arabic alphabets to reading Quran with Tajweed in U.K and all over the word. Our key aim in mind is to prepare children who are unable to read Quran with Tafseer and Tajweed for adults also who can read but not aware of Tajweed rules. We are specialized in teaching Quran with Tajweed which is the true pronunciation of the Quran and the recommended way of reading Quran.
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