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What is the highlight of my week? It’s the 2 hours of learning Ivrit with Nitza at Spiro Ark. Do not be surprised at this for I shall explain.
As an adult non-examination class, we are not bound by the strictures of a prescribed curriculum and Nitza takes full advantage of this.
As a highly experienced and knowledgeable educator, Nitza is aware of the various topics which students commonly find difficult. No matter how many times we make mistakes, Nitza’s patience is endless.
In a 2 hour lesson we might begin by talking about what we did last week, The range of vocabulary relates to us as adults in our real lives and therefore is significant. Nitza makes it even more real by using those spoken sessions to highlight grammar and spelling. Nitza then encourages us to ask questions of each other on the new vocabulary. It’s a great interactive way to learn.
Nitza has very useful spelling hints using visual cues – I will always know which ‘ch’ letter is in the verb to eat!
In any lesson, we could be learning about the impact of biblical Hebrew and even Aramaic on modern Ivrit. Language evolves and Nitza is also careful to teach us modern new Ivrit idioms and sayings. As Nitza is a native Ivrit speaker, we don’t just learn the words, we practise saying them as Israelis ie with the correct accent and emphasis.
Although language learning is primarily for spoken communication, there is also emphasis on ‘book work’ and homework. In addition, time permitting (!) at home I follow Nitza’s suggestion to use the mobile phone to read aloud a passage which we had read in class in order to gain fluency.
Now this might sound like it’s all jolly hard work. NO. There’s a great deal of humour, laughter and fun in our fantastic class not only from Nitza’s wonderful teaching but also I appreciate my classmates as we all learn from each other. Nitza is very careful to ensure that each of us is fully engaged in the lesson.
Finally, the age old question: why learn a foreign language?
Scientific research indicates that, for adults, foreign language learning opens up new neural connections, resulting in improved cognitive benefits and enhancement of brain power.
Whilst the lessons are serious, wonderful and joyful, there’s also the hidden healthy brain benefit!
Nitza, I look forward to and love coming to your class. Thank you, Malka