The Arabic language is one of the most beautiful languages in the world. Learning its correct usage and pronunciation is integral to ensuring its relevance in expressing thoughts and feelings coherently.
Unfortunately, it has been noted that many children in the Arab world find it difficult to pronounce Arabic words correctly. For instance, dropping some letters during the speech, such as replacing the pronunciation of the word samaht with sahat or marhaba with marba, or sometimes changing the letter or merging it incorrectly, such as saying: theen instead of sein and ghain instead of ra are common mistakes made by children when it comes to the Arabic pronunciation.
This phenomenon often negatively impacts their psychological and social development. It’s quite understandable that if a child is unable to communicate his or her thoughts clearly, he or she may feel embarrassed in front of their peers, teachers, or family members. This can erode their confidence or develop a tendency towards withdrawing from social contact in their early years.
Hence, learning how to pronounce words and all their letters correctly is essential for children to help them build language skills, understand the meaning of words and accelerate their pace of language development.
Several studies suggest that one of the best ways for children to learn the art of pronouncing new words correctly is to read out loud to them with the correct pronunciation and sound of the letter.
Are you a teacher looking for dependable tools to enhance the learning process in the classroom? Are you a parent who wants to help their child pronounce their words in Arabic correctly?
If yes, then this article is for you.
Check Out These 7 Actionable Tips to Help Children Improve Their Arabic Pronunciation
Tip 1: Pronounce Clearly and Correctly for the Child
Parents and teachers form the first step for a child to learn any language well. Hence, they must improve their own pronunciation of letters and words and repeat the same correctly to children- whether it is through simple dialogues or technology-based applications.
Tip 2: Avoid Using the Colloquial Dialect
As guardians, it is very important to be careful about using the right words in front of a child, Reading out Arabic stories in the standard Arabic language and avoiding the use of the colloquial dialect helps to ensure that the child is used to hearing words in their basic form without any form of day-to-day adulteration.
Tip 3: Make Your Children Listen to Arabic Songs
Playing out songs dedicated to children in Arabic also helps a lot with improving pronunciation. Children tend to remember what they hear better. By encouraging them to memorize and repeat the lyrics of popular songs, their pronunciation skills are sure to improve.
Tip 4: Introduce Them to Quranic Texts
Teaching the child short Quranic surahs such as Surat Al-Ikhlas and Al-Kawthar as per his or her age and ability is known to help with elevating a child’s language and moral skills at the same time.
Tip 5: Teach them how to Recognize Letter Names & Sounds
Teaching the child, the difference between the name of the letter and its sound is yet another effective way to enhance pronunciation. For instance - The letter baa is called ba. However, its pronunciation is bbbbbb. Similarly, the letter dal is called dal, but its pronunciation is ddddd, and the letter sein is pronounced ssssss.
Tip 6- Use Illustrated Cards to Teach Sounds of Letters
Using cards that are illustrated with formation of sounds to teach the pronunciation of each letter and its direct use is also a very helpful practice. Essentially, a child learns the articulation of letter sounds by distinguishing the letters that are pronounced through the outermost part of the tongue. For instance, the letter qaf, which is pronounced from the middle of the tongue; jim and shin are pronounced using the lips; and ba, waw, meem, are pronounced from the hollow and the farthest part of the throat.
Tip 7- Identify & Address Points of Confusion
As a parent or teacher, it is integral for you to keep a close watch and ascertain which are the words that confuse the child. Once you have a sense of that, you may then use games, exercises, stories, songs to easily facilitate their learning and correct pronunciation of those words.
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The Relevance of Using Technology to Improve Language Skills
In the present day, technology has spread its wings across all areas of life. It has excellent applications in learning too and must be leveraged for helping children to learn their native language more effectively.
Currently, many teachers and parents across the world have become dependent on technology as a tool for teaching and explaining. Technology allows converting an ordinary paper into a display program with sounds, colors, chants, and songs to fit the topic that is to be taught to the child.
Some recent studies have also found that the use of technology in teaching a language to children is significantly more motivating and encouraging for a child as compared to the traditional means. It also simplifies following up on the child’s linguistic development for the parents and the teachers in the various platforms and applications.
With the view to improve Arabic learning outcomes among children, the interactive Nahla and Nahil platform has been designed and prepared by Arabic language teachers and developers to enhance the reading and cognitive skills of children and stimulate critical thinking.
The platform empowers teachers to plan lessons, create electronic tests and obtain detailed reports on the achievement of each student. This helps them to evaluate and follow up on their students inside and outside the school. Parents may also subscribe to the platform on behalf of their children to facilitate their task in teaching and improving the language skills of the child.
As a child’s guardian, it is pertinent to realize that learning the correct pronunciation is not the only way to learn a language, but it is definitely one of the most important. Language represents a child's well-established identity, and mastering it is a crucial factor to enhance the child's confidence in himself and those around him.
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