Arabic language development alongside cross-cultural growth
“Advanced High” test score
Shababeek helped my wife and I achieve our long-term goal of reaching Advanced High on the ACTFL OPI Speaking Evaluation!
a structured program at your personal pace with all the resources needed to develop comprehension and enhance communication skills on your path to learning spoken Levantine Arabic.
Your journey through our five-phase Levantine Arabic program starts with simple activities to develop comprehension and conversation skills.
Begin learning Levantine Arabic through the physical world around you. You will use pictures, objects, and puppets, to collect the most essential vocabulary through seeing and doing. Your first day will be completely in Arabic… no translation is needed.
Learn how to build simple stories in the present and past based on your developing vocabulary. Picture books are used as visual aids in storytelling.
Move beyond the visual into telling familiar world stories and practicing role plays for common interactions.
Gain deep insights and new perspectives on local life and culture. Your nurturer will share their life story and societal values with you, allowing you to discover the culture around you at a deep level.
Shababeek’s 5 Phases
Each phase of our experiential Arabic learning program consists of different activities and an approximate hour count of how long each phase takes.
As many as you can. It takes around 1600 hours of sessions to build a vocab of 10,000 recognizable words. This is when we start to understand most of what we hear around us.
Ask yourself the question: “How long do I want to wait to know people and be known by Arabic speakers?” The more hours you are learning daily, the faster the “wall of noise” around you will become familiar sounds and the more you’ll feel a sense of belonging.
We recommend taking 20 hours weekly for your first year of sessions to fast-track your learning.
In his book, Outliers, author Malcolm Gladwell highlights a study published in the “Harvard Business Review.” The concept has become known as the “10,000 hours to become an expert rule.” Gladwell explains the research behind the idea that true expertise is achieved after investing 10,000 hours in learning or practicing a skill. This may be a sport, a musical instrument or the study of something.
If we consider ﬂuency to be the same as being an “expert”, then a learner should invest 10,000 hours in their language efforts over time.
There are many ways to define “fluency.” An easier question to answer is, “How long until I understand most of what is happening around me?” In this case, it’s necessary to become familiar with at least 10,000 vocabulary words in any given language, particularly a language as rich as Arabic. We find this takes most people around 1600 hours of Arabic sessions. Depending on how many hours you are committing, this can be reached in as few as 16 months. Most Arabic learners set aside two years for full time Arabic immersion.
For more information on this topic, check out this article.
At Shababeek efforts are focused on helping you quickly understand the world around you and develop relationships. For that reason, beginning in Phase 2, we start with practical skills you need quickly, like reading words on signs and text messaging friends.
Your Arabic program can be personalized and adjusted to your abilities and goals. Some people have high ambitions for their reading and writing. Others prefer to strengthen conversational skills as their primary focus. At Shababeek you can have it whichever way you’d like it. Vast written resources help you progress according to your personal abilities – as fast as you can go!
If you like worksheets and reading texts – we’ve got endless resources to meet your needs.
All you need is a recording device and both ears. You can purchase one (Sony digital flash recorder or Olympus recorders are both good) or use your phone or tablet/ipad.
Our participants enjoy the following apps:
Voice Record Pro
Hi-Q MP3 recorder for Android
Voice recorder and audio editor for iPhone