Niek Arensen, Jordash Kiffiak, Randall Buth
Introduction Part One
Part One starts at an absolute beginning level and leads a student into thinking in the language right from the start. It uses 1000 pictures with accompanying audio tracks to provide an immersion environment for learning Christian Aramaic (Syriac). The pictures are described in Aramaic beginning with simple words, before progressing to phrases, full sentences, and eventually short story sequences, all in the language. In this way, the student is exposed to the breadth of the language (including singular and plural nouns, verbal tenses, imperatives, number and gender concord, with over 200 lexical items and roughly 700 forms).
Note: Part One is highly recommend both for beginning students in any program as a complement to whatever curriculum they are using, and also for more advanced students, even instructors, who have never experienced or practiced thinking directly in the language.
Part One also teaches the alphabet through listening discovery, introduces the writing system, and has a section summarizing the grammar. All the descriptions of the 1000 pictures are transcribed in fully vocalized Christian Aramaic so that a student learns to correctly spell what they have already learned to understand.
Introduction Part One is currently available via download in PDF format with accompanying audio files (MP3).
For more on the practical reasons for studying Christian Aramaic (Syriac) before Biblical Aramaic, see this post. For more on why it is worthwhile to learn Syriac in general see this post.