1. done
  2. done
  3. done
  4. done
  5. done
  6. done
  7. done
  8. done
  9. done
  10. done
  11. done
  12. done
  13. done
  14. done
  15. done
  16. who makes federal laws
    1. careful, makes -> يسن.   Not intuitive
  17. اذكر الجزئين من الكونغرس
    1. very wrong
    2. ما هما فرعا الكونغرس الأمريكي
    3. see how it got denunated?
  18. كم عدد السيناتور في الكونغرس؟
    1. كم هو عدد أعضاء مجلس الشيوخ
    2. so now they go with majlis ashuyuukh. Before it was just senator. I can kinda imagine why, sheikh is too ambiguous in the singular w/o majlis.
    3. and odd that they put in huwa but w/e.
  19. انتخاب السيناتور لكم سنة؟ tough
    1. كم عدد سنوات انتخاب السيناتور الأمريكي
    2. the # of years of election of an american senator.    seems confusing.
  20. اذكر سيناتورا واحدا في ولايتك الآن
    1. ?
  21. كم عدد الأعضاء المصوتين في مجلس النواب؟
    1. ?

stacked modifiers

Arabic, esp. fus7a, “allows modifier phrases to intervene between verbs and their direct objects, as in students who passed a few days ago in their home countries the high school exams. ”   Translations need to adapt accordingly as that aint ok in English at all.     -Note: this quotation from p 149 of The Georgetown Guide to Arabic-English Translation, Mustafa Mughazy.

Citizenship

Click to access 100q_Arabic.pdf


https://www.uscis.gov/citizenship/teachers/educational-products/100-civics-questions-and-answers-mp3-audio-english-version

  1. OF the land  للبلاد   don’t say min in this case, say لـ
  2. ماذا يفعل الدستور
    1. I think this means what does the constitution do?
    2. correct
  3.  The idea of self-government is waarida in the first 3 words (الكلمات الثلاث – مو الثلاثة! – الأولى  )      of the constitution.   من الدستور.       What are these words?
    1. Note how they say ما هي هذه الكلمات
    2. It is easy to do this from arabic to english – instead let’s try the other!
  4.  ما هو التعديل؟   this is my english-to-arabic translation.
  5. ماذا يُسمى أول عشر تعديلات للدستور؟
    1. Now this was trickier.
    2. See, they kept it “we”.  ماذا نسمي التعديلات العشرة (عن جد؟ ليس العشر؟) الأولى للدستور
    3. well; you got the preposition ل correct.
    4. Note how they started with amendments, then said 10 then said first.   The amendments 10 first for the constitution.
    5. Open your mind to allow لـ to mean “to”. . . It’s often the case.
    6. ما هو حق واحد أو حرية واحدة من التعديل الأول؟
      1. Aha, see what they did here:
      2. اَذكر واحدا من الحقوق أو الحريات الواردة في التعديل الأول
      3. what i did well was التعديل الاول instead of أول تعديل
      4. but see how they avoided the gender issue by saying “MENTION (imp) ONE of the rights or the freedoms”   so this way one could just be male. And mansoob with the tanween btw.    Alwaarida means “received”.  Think of imports. مستوردات.  or Do you want to import this CD to your iTunes library? استيراد هذا القرص إلى مكتبة
      5. itunes
      6. Anyway.. moving along. just note that وارد is not really natural in english. The rights conferred perhaps, instead of received.
    7. Arabic to english.    كم هو عدد التعديلات في الدستور?
      1. How many amendments are in the constitution? – my guess
      2. “How many amendments does the constitution have”   eh, whatever.   Note that were I to go English to ARabic here, I’d have actually benefited. Let’s try those now.
    8. ماذا فعل إعلان الاستقلال؟
      1. Nailed it.
    9. اذكر اثنان من الحقوق الواردة في إعلان الاستقلال
      1. لا!   لازم أقول “اثنين” لانه منصوب
      2. غير هذا الخطأ، كان تماما
    10. ما هي حرية الدين؟
      1. Nailed it.
    11. ما هو النظام الاقتصادي في الولايات المتحدة؟
      1. تمام.
    12. ما هو “حكم القانون”؟
      1. nailed it
    13. اذكر واحدا من أجهزة أو فروع الحكومة
      1. NOT jihaaz. Instead, juz’  … Huh! piece.
      2. And here, they waited with “one” until later.
      3. اذكر فرع أو جزء واحد من الحكومة   funny that.
    14. من يمنع بأن يصبح قوياً جداً جهاز من الحكومة؟
      1. I don’t feel good about my answer here. Let’s think about why.
      2. The prompt is “what stops oen branch of govt from becoming too powerful”
      3. Other candidates:
      4. ما الذي يمنع جهاز واحد من الحكومة من أن يصبح قوياً أكثر مما يجب؟
      5. Feeling better about that.
      6. Check:
      7. ما الذي يمنع فرعاً واحداً من الحكومة من أن يصبح قوياً بأكثر مما يجب؟
      8. so my 2nd guess was way the hell better but… notice what I didn’t get. fara3 is branch. They keep switching it up.    And too powerful is not merely قوي أكثر مما يجب instead a preposition has to be chunked in there. 
      9. Why would this be? Lets thinnk…   What is it that prohibits a branch one from the government from that it becomes powerful by  more than it should be.   Simply not intuitive, still. ****So we need to make a flashcard out of things that are non intuitive.*****
    15. من يتولي الجهاز التنفيذي؟
      1. You tried to use that form V verb, but nope.
      2. من هو المسؤول عن السلطة التنفيذية
      3. one lesson I’m learning here is that the word for branch is ever-changing. Here they say “authority” or “power” along with the adjective executive.     Btw, remember أمر تنفيذي؟   exec order.

Pause for the evening. Was good.

problem with F

I found a cool Arabic font, but it has a problem. http://29letters.com/fonts-catalogue/5

Otherwise I would have seriously considered buying it; have contacted the designer to see what can be done.

Also, forgive my grammar error in the pdf: انه يمكن تعرفونor something like that. I guess it would be أتمنى أنكم تستطيعون حل المشكلة حتى

edit: they contacted me and said it’s just a trademark to prevent the trial version from getting exploited.

latest updates

my primary form of studying arabic for the last month has been less technological than normal, instead, on the advice of Gabriel Wyner’s book Fluent Forever  , I decided to try a Leitner box by hand. Here is what i do each morning , which is not quite the same as what he advises:

  • Review whichever of my 1-8 sections  are listed as needing review, based on the calendar I drew up. Start with the highest section.
  • when i miss cards, they move not into section 1, but to a side pile, which only is added to section 1 after I review section 1 for the day, review any new cards & add to section 1, etc. Why? Because I don’t think  a card should get a 2nd review and get a chance to move back up to section 2, it should have to wait til tomorrow.
  • I review any new cards I want to add, as well as making new  cards. If I make a card in the morning, review it in the evening and get it right, sure I’ll move it to section 2. Otherwise, section 1, to ensure it gets seen tomorrow.

 

What are my flashcards like? The front is a long paragraph, full of connected & related terminology , found via a Google News search of the arabic word I want to learn. Ideally it is as sensational and visceral, shocking, bizarre as possible. Like, for عَجوز, yes I put that word on the back. The front was a paragraph about a recent murder case in Egypt in which the 3juuz was a predator in some park and – to make a long story short- ended up getting strangled to death by his intended victim.   All this to say, don’t pick some boring story, and don’t pick a boring paragraph either. Make sure it will burn itself into your head, and that it has some related words ideally (when learning سرج, I found a paragraph that talks about the importance of getting one with the right dimensions so that your horse does not feel discomfort  when you are riding, and so on – ok, that’s not sensational but you get the idea).

So yeah the front of my flashcard is a paragraph with 1-2 blanks in it, and my task as I review is to remember what word goes in those blanks.

Don’t force yourself to read the whole thing when you review, the moment the word comes to your mind, khalaS! Move it up a deck.

Having a sturdy, nice looking leitner box is honestly kind of helpful, you want something that feels legitimate and which  cards will stay put in..

For MSA, I don’t mark anything on the front of the cards as to “MSA!” For all dialects that interest me, I write which dialect I’m looking for. Flash cards should not require me to put in the unnecessary work of coming up with an entire sentence with all the right words and all the right order, – there should be little ambiguity, for the card to be as effective as possible. It should ask little of me and as long as my brain works even slightly, I can succeed and move on..

Why so much focus on flashcards? Because I started to believe that my poor listening skills boils down to not knowing enough vocab, but also not having my existing vocab base deeply ingrained enough in my head. If it’s really in there, I will become more flexible as a listener, able to catch it even if the ق is turned to a ء , or when ppl change all the 7arakat around like مُعجزة becomes Shami “me3jize” sort of thing (I don’t remember how to make a schwa on my keyboard,but that is what replaces ضمة on the mim).

Also, lately in addition to work  – which still involves plenty of interaction with arabic speakers, thankfully – I am guiding an Iraqi man on how to prep for the citizenship test. This has so far taught me words such as:

  • اقاليم territories (eg puerto rico)
  • مستعمرة colony (e.g 13 original colonies)
  • قسم الولاء oath of allegiance (I think this is the right arabic translation, but don’t quote me)
  • يسنّ this means to make , as in to make legislation, to pass a law. The verb performed by congresspeople.
  • I used to think senator was شيخ من مجلس الشيوخ but I now see it professionally translated as سيناتور or something. Idk about the spelling, i forgot.
  • يمنع فرعا واحدا من الحكومة من أن يصبح قويا أكثر مما يجب    – this is an MSA explanation of the purpose behind “checks and balances”, which btw is translated as ضوابط وتوازنات
  • some other words I forgot. anyway..