Well, if you want to know more about the JICC Arabic courses, you need to click here and read the post from last year (let’s not repeat ourselves too much…). So we can focus on the updates for the 2011-2012 classes. This fall we have opened up 6 courses in Arabic: 2 in Level 1 (beginners), 2 in Level 2 (advanced beginners), 1 in Level 3 (intermediate) and 1 in Level 4 (advanced).
The groups meet on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays at the JICC building.
The goal of the courses is to train professionals who need to use Arabic in their professional capacities to communicate on a reasonable level, and the curriculum is designed for this purpose. Classes include a large component of discussions and listening to songs and other verbal material to practice. “After only 4-5 lessons, the teacher gave us a 30-minute lecture in Arabic – on the teacher’s family, on their pilgrimage to Mecca, etc. and we understood everything!” exclaimed one participant.
This year we have some 80 participants – students, professionals and activists who come into regular contact with Arabic-speaking residents and who need it to communicate with them.
“I enjoy the course immensely,” said another participant. “I don’t believe I’ll ever be fully fluent, but it does definitely help me to understand Arab culture and history. I am now more aware of the presence and (or absence) of Arabic all around me – on signs, in stores. It is also very interesting for me to see the similarities between Arabic and the language found in Jewish sources.”
The format is hence similar to previous years, but we (and more important, the participants) feel that the classes improve from year to year!