Urdu is the national and official (along with English) language of Pakistan, spoken by more that 60 million people around the globe. Unfortunately, it is one of the most difficult to learn as a foreign language as well, having a distinct alphabet, which is a major obstacle for English speakers. If you are seeking to grasp the basics in order to communicate with friends and relatives, though, then Urdu for children is the ideal option for you.
- Skill level:
Learn how to read the Urdu texts. Even though you will deal with simple scripts, being able to read the words is a must. Visit Urdu Reading and click on the "Free Online Self Learning" from the list on the left end of the screen. You will be redirected to some simple lessons, teaching you from the Urdu alphabet to everyday greetings and wishes. If you still haven't understood how to read the words, which is quite possible, you can turn to the more detailed lessons by Ukindia.
Discover the pronunciation of letters and how to count in Urdu, through a series of videos targeted to toddlers, on Forum Pakistan. For a beginner, they are just what is needed to learn the basics of the language, the simple way. There are also short stories, narrated in the form of songs, following the fun-and-learn method of teaching a language.
Read Urdu children's books. By the time you have learnt how to read the words, even if you don't know what they mean, you can start reading children's books in Urdu, with the help of a dictionary. Such books can be found on sale at World Language, but there is also a selection of kids' books on Urdupoint. The latter are for more mature children and should be left for a later stage of your Urdu language self-education.
Visit Ibtada, a specially designed website for children, offering everything from simple educational games to short stories, which are narrated to you with a press of a button. It's a fun way to spend time discovering the features of this site, while you can actually compare your pronunciation to the narrator's and correct possible mistakes in your speech. Unfortunately, the website is only provided in Urdu, so you can truly enjoy its contents only when your language skills have evolved.
Tips and warnings
- Be persistent. Urdu is a difficult language and even kids' content will seem strange. Don't be discouraged, and after lots of practice, results will certainly come.
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