Zooming in and out in Arabic
For Sharek centre’s online Arabic classes we use a free tool called Zoom. This is a good name for it because it allows learners of Arabic anywhere in the world to zoom in to high quality classes with our team of experienced and qualified Arabic teachers at Sharek.
Here’s a very short excerpt of a class with Sharek teacher, Isra’a and a beginner in Arabic (me). Zoom is also a good way of looking at two necessary processes involved in REALLY learning a language, and you can see both of them happening in the video. We need to zoom in on language – that is look at the spellings of words, how to pronounce things, the meanings etc, but we also need to zoom out and use language for genuine communication; to share who we are with others and to make sense of the world around us.
We have lots of different types of learner at Sharek but the most typical situation is that students have previously done lots of zooming in type activities (memorising word lists and grammar transformation exercises etc), but have generally had fewer opportunities for communication and freer conversation. At Sharek, in both our online and our face to face classes, we put lots of emphasis on balancing zooming in with zooming out. because we believe that you need both these things in order to make the language your own.
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