Coloring pictures is cathartic, well…until your hand cramps up and the pencil indents itself into your finger. We’re having flashbacks to our carefree days in elementary school; coloring, cutting, and laminating, except now we possess the expertly honed abilities to color within the lines, cut in straight rows, and operate a high-powered electrical machine.
Seriously though, this is prep work for our language studies. Each of the pictures that we color, cut, and laminate are going to aid our language helper in teaching us Arabic. We’re using the Graduated Participator Approach (GPA).
For the first 30-40 hours (or 1-2 weeks) we participate simply by listening and responding non-verbally as our helper points to different picture cards while pronouncing the name in Arabic. During this time we expect to add between 300-400 new words to our vocabulary!
The next 50-60 hours we will learn an additional 450+ words while participating in limited two-way conversation as best we can. As we progress to Phase 2 of GPA we begin story telling using simple, wordless children’s books. The end result, of course, is to speak fluently!
For now this is our full-time job; starting out just like babies, learning a new language, making countless mistakes, practicing in the marketplace, making new friends, and feeling like fools much of the time as we stumble over unfamiliar words and sounds!