We are all in the same boat- stranded at home… The good news is that we have more time for ourselves. Let’s try to use it to make things that we have long neglected happen- such as our Hebrew! Here are 5 tips that will allow you to boost your Hebrew skills during quarantine without leaving your home!
1. Cook …in Hebrew!
Admit it, you’ve cooked more these days than you have in a long time… The three meals in the day have become our daily objectives. We want to innovate, cook healthier, we follow Youtube and Instagram accounts of great chefs we know in search of new recipes (מתכונים – matkonim).
Our advice: decipher your first Hebrew recipes! How can you do it? You can type the name of the dish you want to cook in Hebrew on the internet and the recipe will appear in Hebrew. You can also put the Israeli Channel 12 every day of the week at 12:00 sharp: the great Israeli chefs bring you into their lively kitchen and prepare with the viewers different dishes each day for lunch! It’s perfect for enriching your food and cooking vocabulary.
2. Catch up on an Israeli TV Series!
Israeli TV series (סדרות – sdarot) are a great way to progress in Hebrew. The vocabulary is current and practical and the characters speak as close to real life as possible using slang and daily expressions. These shows also allow you to discover aspects of Israeli society that you do not necessarily know: the daily life of agents of special units (Fauda) or that of the ultra-Orthodox of Mea Shearim (Shtisel).
Our advice: Get started! Watch your first series in Hebrew. Our favorites: Shtisel, Beauty and the Baker (להיות איתה), and Fauda.
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3. Tackle your favorite songs!
Here’s another great way to progress in Hebrew: listening to Israeli music! The concept is simple: you genuinely enjoy listening to these songs (שירים – shirim) and thus retain the vocabulary better.
Our advice: select your 10 favorite Israeli songs, print the lyrics and translate them, line by line. For those who want a recommendation: here is a Spotify playlist of favorite Israeli songs from teachers at Ulpan Integraliah.
Our advice for beginners: start with Arik Einstein’s “Shabbat Ba’boker”!
4. Look at news in Hebrew once a day
Rare opportunity to learn vocabulary (אוצר מילים – otsar milim): One thing the Coronavirus brought with it are new vocabulary words that you probably never heard before (virus, contamination rate, isolation, quarantine…).
Our advice: Since we all already spend several hours (or so) a day in front of the news, use this time to enrich your vocabulary by watching the information in Hebrew! This is a big challenge, so take it step by step: start by looking at the headlines, take a picture of what is written and translate each word at your own pace. You will quickly realize that the vocabulary used is often the same.
5. Speak Hebrew!
We spend all our time nowadays at home with our families/roommates. Now is the time to do yourself a favor: speak Hebrew with your loved ones!
Our advice: Set a little time each day during which you speak only in Hebrew. No one will be able to judge you, free yourself and dare to speak! Practice makes perfect!