Tradition and Evolution: The Importance of Arabic Training
Earlier this year Dr. Mohamed Safi Al Mosteghanemi, the Secretary General of Sharjah’s Arabic Language Academy, announced the commencement of a landmark historical record that would chart 17 centuries of development in the Arabic Language. The Historical Dictionary of the Arabic Language will document the growth of the language and the culture, right up to modern day. As the world’s fifth most widely spoken language, such an extensive study and record will not only pay homage to this poetically inspired linguistic collective, but, in the words of Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, it “will mark a new era for the Arabic language lexicon.”
By utilising the collective memories of the pioneers and average citizens within the Arab world, as well as relevant examples from its news, literature and history, the assigned scholars will be able to chronicle the evolution of Arabic, as well as draw lessons from the way it has been impacted by world events. Over 300 senior Arabic researchers and linguists, editors and experts have been divided into nine committees in nine countries and they will be evaluating pieces in five stages: pre-Islamic, Islamic, separatist dynasties, the Mamluk Sultanate and modern history. From the old inscriptions to the practical use of the language in today’s globalised society, they will be including references from divergent fields including philosophy, literature and the sciences.
It is hoped that this ambitious endeavour will not only shine a light on a culture still greatly misunderstood around the world, but also help reinvigorate the vital importance of preserving and encouraging the growth of Arabic amongst future generations. Here at TELLAL, we couldn’t applaud such an effort more, especially as we know the importance of Arabic training programmes. It served as a further reminder of the role we play in spreading the wisdoms and insights of this language and culture, both amongst Arabs and non-Arabs.
The diverse cultural demographics in Dubai, particularly in our schools, means that so many different people find themselves seeking the chance to learn or expand their knowledge of Arabic. Those with an eye on the future, a love of poetic beauty or simply a curious nature, find themselves united in classrooms grappling with spellings and pronunciations. There is so much to learn from a language that has been around for thousands of years, and has influenced many of the words and phrases used in other languages, including English.
Here at TELLAL, we offer a variety of courses that centre on teaching Arabic, from our Teach Best Apprenticeship to our TELLAL Train the Trainer Programme. In each one, we have utilised expert partners to craft best practice methodologies and the development of pedagogical skills, in order to ensure our graduates leave feeling fully confident in their abilities to teach Arabic and inspire others to embrace its amazing qualities. By working with the right teams, we can continually ensure that we are evolving our own processes and procedures, as well as those proposed for the classrooms, in order to expand the experience of Arabic further, wider and more effectively. Our courses have been developed by the Sharek Centre, an expert, holistic language centre dedicated to Arabic language learning, Arabic teacher training and the development of understanding of Arab culture. Their specialised understanding of the power and beauty of the Arabic language has facilitated their creation of truly bespoke learning and training methods that focus on sharing the wonder of Arabic for students at any age. Whether you want to learn how best to engage small children or spark the right discussion with older kids, these programmes will help you turn your knowledge of Arabic into a lasting and effective teaching tool.
The proposed Dictionary will chart the evolution of Arabic and no doubt provide insight into its future course, because the importance of Arabic cannot be understated. Given its potential to teach us about the past of all cultures, we want to make sure that our programmes and our teachers evolve in the same way, so that Arabic continues to be a crucial element of global culture as we face the generations to come.