So your child has just learnt all their Arabic alphabet sounds and they are ready to move on to reading Arabic, where to next? This post will outline how to start teaching your child to read Arabic at home in fun and easy ways using interactive resources – some free and some bought! If you have just landed on this post and are looking for how to begin teaching the Arabic Alphabet home – click on my previous post here.
Step #1 – Introduce the beginning letter form
Start by introducing the beginning form of the Arabic letters along with recapping the whole letter sounds too. Unlike English, Arabic letters sometimes look completely different when joint together in a word – it’s a bit like really difficult joined up English hand-writing. Therefore, it’s important to teach your child how the letters connect. I highly recommend these lovely Arabic Alphabet Snap cards by Iqra Games. They come in mini card sizes (smaller than a normal pack of cards size) in different colours for each letter form – beginning, middle and end. There are suggestions to play a number of different games including snap and the memory game which are 2 of our faves. It’s best to let your children get confident with the beginning Arabic letter form first (red cards below) – so they don’t get so confused with the middle and end letter forms. It’s also good to highlight that there are some letters that do not change or connect to other Arabic letters -these letters are special is the best explanation! 🙂
Step #2 – Fun & Easy matching activities
A great follow up activity to help your child recognise the Arabic alphabet beginning forms is with this cool activity below. We modified this activity from this awesome book Teach Your Child to Read Arabic in 10 EASY Lessons. I love how this book Umm Summaya uses montessori methods to teach Arabic! We cut them up and laminated them to use as a peg the correct letter activity. It works well as a matching the beginning Arabic letter form to the Arabic whole letter.
Step #3 – Use phonic knowledge to sound out and blend to read!
Introduce sounding out of Arabic letters to build words. I absolutely loved this phonics style activity from Teach Your Child to Read Arabic in 10 EASY Lessons. So we printed it and laminated them! It’s great to practise the Arabic letter sounds and then blending to read just like we would in phonics in English. At this stage it isn’t necessary for your child to know about the tashkeel (dhamma, fat-ha, kasrah). They can sound out the letters and you can correct it for blending without going into details on tashkeel. Our main focus in this stage is letter sound recognition and connecting letter forms.
Step #4 – Build the words!
The next step is a fun activity where children are encouraged to build the words using Montessori style Arabic letter connectors (Yomna bought these pictured from Egypt). Alternatively You can check out the awesome Arabic Letter Connector I have from Ilm projects, or even Arabic Letters Cubes. All these work in pretty much the same way to help your child build the Arabic connector letters to make words.
Step #5 – Reading new vocabulary with object clues!
At this stage, you will want your child to read to understand some of the vocabulary too. So you can simply write out simple 3 letter Arabic words (a list will be sent out in our newsletter – be sure to subscribe below!) and once they sound out the letters and blend, they can pick out the correct object from a basket to match the word.
Step #6 – Listening activities & pronunciation!
Children (and even adults) can find the similar sounding letters in Arabic confusing. So this activity we do below with the kids is fabulous! The children listen to word being said and peg the letter. You can find this to download for free on here. These resources along with many more are absolutely FREE shared by a sister who posts her resources on her Facebook group called Arabic Worksheets.
Step #7 – Introduce the tashkeel starting with Fat-ha!
I started this step by making my own very basic tashkeel letters on coloured card. Alternatively you can download and print the free flashcards with tashkeel by a Muslim Homeschool too! You can go through the sounds individually or mix it up and put 2 to 3 cards at a time to see if your child can connect the dots between the letter sound + fat-ha + then the next letter with fat’ha. Remember to start slow and work at your child’s pace. Below are pictures of some zigzag booklets I made when introducing the fat’ha to Ammarah 🙂 You can also bring back the montessori style connector letters or even the Arabic Letter Connector from Ilm projects (which also includes the tashkeel). I have also recommended the Ajmal Al Qawaaid book to help those who want their children to begin reading Arabic to access the Qur’an.
Step #8 – Check out our fave Arabic resources to help with teaching your child to read Arabic below!
- Arabic Alphabet for Kids with Animals – Learn Arabic ABC with Zakaria – a lovely video which goes through the tashkeel of each letter and some vocabulary.
- Arabic Worksheets Facebook Group – Here you’ll find a lot of free worksheets for all kinds of Arabic learning!
- Dr Laura’s Kitchen has a cute section on making little Arabic vocabulary books. Our girls really enjoyed making these! (although the site is in Arabic – it is fairly easy to download the resources because of the pictures attached!)
- Mona’s Bonyan Academy featuring Montessori style Arabic resources to help with reading as in the picture below! (Her website is in Arabic) – you can email her for more info and find her on Facebook too.
- Gambian Mommy’s superb, colourful resources for letter connecting and so much more!
What’s more is we even dedicated our Tuesday Teaching Tips video to reading in Arabic this week. For more on how to teach Arabic to your child at home! Watch below – Subscribe to my Youtube channel so you never miss a video!
This post and video above was in collaboration with Yomna from @happyhomelearning – you can follow her on her instagram page!
You can download our FREE Arabic teaching resources below including a vocabulary list for each Arabic letter and Arabic letter writing sheets. 🙂
Arabic Vocab linked to teaching the Arabic Alphabet
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Maa shaa Allah
Mashallah, very nice. I love the wide selection of resources to choose from, all fun and interactive which will keep the children interested. Jazakallah Khair for sharing.
These are really awesome and very interacting ideas to teach kids….thank you for sharing with us about the resources available….it is really useful…
MashaAllah, this post is really comprehensive to teach children to learn Arabic.
Masha Allah really great post❤ I loved the way you wrote all the details. Thanks for sharing!
Thank you! ❤️
This is defo something I’ll book mark for future use when my little one is old enough insha Allah. It could even be used for reverts too! Children’s resources are always best when learning a new language
That’s lovely to hear – thank you!
Masha’Allah, leaving the ‘vowel sounds’ until later seems really dyslexia-friendly. I think step four here will appeal to everyone in my family, insha’Allah, so I have added your recommended resources to my wishlist and bookmarked this post. Jazakillahkhayr.
That’s great- yes we find it can confuse the child so best to bring in later- glad it’s helpful!
I love these activities masha’Allah Hafsa! I’m bookmarking this inshaAllah to come back to when the kids are ready to move on to this stage – it’s such a comprehensive post!
Thanks Iman! Appreciate the support!
Mashaallah very nice article… Thanks for sharing…. 🙂
This is amazing! I think reading and understanding is so important as a Muslim. Starting to teach from young is super important. Thank you for sharing 🙂 (www.spicyfusionkitchen.com)
Thank you for sharing! This is really helpful information. One difficulty I am running into with Arabic is that we speak Iraqi Arabic in the home, but children’s books are in MSA. Often when I’m reading, I feel like I have to keep “translating” from MSA to the Iraqi dialect. (I have two boys: 2.5 yrs and 4.5 yrs.) I try not to translate all the words – I want them to pick up some of the meaning just from context – but if I read everything in MSA, they don’t understand it very well and they quickly get bored. I worry that it’s a lot to expect of such young children to speak the Iraqi dialect, to learn modern standard Arabic, AND to learn to speak/read/write English in preschool.
I think the best thing is as they are so young, get familiar with speaking and familiar with the alphabet and writing it. The will pick up languages but maybe as the languages are similar in dialect, they could pick it up quicker. You could focus on one language at a time too – hope that helps. You can also check out http://www.multiculturalmotherhood.com who shares the benefits of teaching more than one language from an early age 🙂
Does anyone know where to get the arabic reading series from bonyan academy?
Very nicely written post