Congratulations on choosing Little Pim Arabic.

This Little Pim Companion Guide is designed to help you with the proper Arabic pronunciation if you want to learn along with your young viewer. Children are visual and aural learners – they watch the screen, hear what’s being said, and easily understand and repeat; and as they repeat after Little Pim the teacher, they will have perfect accents! Adults, however, may need a bit of written help to understand the differences in pronunciation and/or to remember new words.

In addition to the pronunciation tips on this sheet, you will note that we have spelled out selected words phonetically on the Little Pim screen. If you would like additional support, you can

– Download our Companion Script, which includes all the words and phrases in Little Pim in Arabic, English and easy phonetics. If you want to read all the words and sentences as they are spoken, you can print this out and follow along with the DVD.

– Choose the optional English Subtitles in the Start Up Menu of the DVD to read English subtitles as you watch

The Arabic used in Little Pim is High or Classical Arabic, known as Fusha. Where Arabic is the nation’s official language, Fusha is used for school (which is why the Arabic version of Sesame Street uses Fusha, as well.) Every speaker of Arabic knows a local spoken vernacular and the formal Fusha.

The big picture:

The following are letters and combinations that you will hear in Arabic which do not exist in the English language:

  • – In Arabic, vowels come in both long and short. However, unlike in English, you hold a long vowel twice as long as a short vowel. In addition, Arabic vowels can sound different depending on the consonants around them.
  • – A number of Arabic consonants have emphatic or hard versions that are pronounced deeper in the throat. Emphatic consonants can make the vowels around them harder and deeper too.
Consonant Sounds Like Example
Kh The “ch” in “Bach” or “loch”; has a raspy sound The phrase SabaaH al-khayr (good morning)
H H is pronounced from the back of the throat SabaaH al-khayr (good morning)
r A rolled “r” sound, similar to the Spanish R The word marHaban (hello)
gh A “gargling” kind of sound between “g” and “r,” produced deep in the throat The word Ghadaa (lunch)
No equivalent in English, produced by contracting the muscles in the throat; sometimes compared to a “choking” sound The word ‘aTshaan
(thirsty)
A “glottal stop,” found at the beginning of “uh-oh!” The phrase ila liqaa’
(see you soon)

For easy to use information on Arabic pronunciation go to:
http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/how-to-pronounce-arabic-sounds.html