An ABC of Food & Drink (Arabic) ألفبائية الطعام والشراب

An ABC of Food & Drink (Arabic) ألفبائية الطعام والشراب

A small gift to all students and teachers of Arabic, wherever you are.

#VisualLearning #VisualTeaching

I’m .. & I Become | Self-Affirmations for Personal Growth

I’m .. & I become is a personal log of short, simple and positive self-affirmations which I compiled for personal use. Repeating self-affirmations is like having a direct self-talk and an inner-dialogue with your self and your sub-conscious. 

Each statement is written in the present tense and in the first person “I”.

You’re free to use them for your personal use as empowering mantras to declare specific goals and desires in their completed state.

Wishing you joy and peace





  • Teach Yourself: Read & Write Arabic Script [WORKBOOK]
  • Publication Date: TBC
  • Publisher: Teach Yourself; 2 edition
  • Language: English, Arabic


Teach Yourself: Essential Arabic Vocabulary: A Handbook of Core Terms

  • Publication Date: 18 Jun. 2015
  • Publisher: Teach Yourself; Bilingual edition
  • Language: English, Arabic
  • Get it from:Amazon UK | Amazon USGoodReads

Internet Arabic: Essential Middle Eastern Vocabularies (w/ MP3 CD) 

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Internet Arabic: Essential Middle Eastern Vocabularies (w/ MP3 CD)


  • Publication Date: 31 Jul 2013
  • Publisher: Edinburgh University Press; Pap/MP3 Bl edition
  • Language: English, Arabic
  • 128 pages
  • ISBN Paperback: 9780748644919
  • Ebook (ePub): 9780748655434
  • Ebook (PDF): 9780748644933
  • Review it at: GoodReads
  • Get it from: Publisher
  • Get it from: Amazon UK | Amazon US 

All the expressions, jargon and new words you need to talk about the internet in Arabic

What’s the Arabic for ‘homepage’? How do you say ‘podcast’? Can you recognise the phrase ‘add this site to your favourites’? Or ‘printer-friendly version’? This vocabulary gives you ready-made lists of key terms for translating both from and into Arabic, grouped together in the way you’ll use them.

Key Features

  • Learn the language the way you’ll use it: terms grouped in thematic sections
  • Check your pronunciation with the included audio
  • Includes an index so you can easily find exactly what you’re looking for


User Guide
1. General
2. Computer Hardware
3. My Digital Identity
4. Web Browsing & Surfing
5. Web Searching
6. Internet Services
7. Written Online Communication
8 Audio-visual Internet, 8.1 Visual Internet
9. E-Learning
10. Online Social Networking
11. Online Collaboration
12. Online & IT Security
13 Mobile Internet

Audio Files

If you’re interested to expand your Arabic vocab into the world of the Internet, eLearning & Blogging & IT-related terminology; the audio recordings of my book Internet Arabic: Essential Middle Eastern Vocabularies are available to dwnld for free, courtesy of @EdinburghUP

Get it from: Amazon UK | Amazon US 

Book Review | Teacher’s Book of Cambridge IGCSE® Arabic as a First Language


A few weeks ago, I was fortunate to be asked to review “Teacher’s Book of Cambridge IGCSE® Arabic as a First Language” by my dear colleague Luma Abdul Hameed from @GoldsmithsUoL and other authors.

I had to say I really enjoyed reading (and reviewing) it content incl. the many teaching tips it had.

Thank you @CambridgeUP for the opportunity

For more information on the publications:

  1. Teacher’s Book of Cambridge IGCSE® Arabic as a First Language
  2. Cambridge IGCSE® Arabic as a First Language Workbook (Cambridge International IGCSE)  2017 by Abdul Hameed, Luma, Al Amleh, Hanadi, Shoua Fakhouri 



Arabic Creative Writing through “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” Story

Published on the IMES (Islamic & Middle Eastern Studies Dpt), U. of Edinburgh Newsletter

Arabic Creative Writing through “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” Story 

In 2011, the tradition of rewriting the “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” story by Eric Carl was initiated. This well-known and much loved children story was chosen in particular since it featured much of the essential and basic vocabulary Arabic language students were expected to know by this stage of the Intensive Arabic Programme at IMES. The main vocabulary areas were namely: days of the week (أيام الأسبوع), numerals (الأرقام), food and drink (الأكل والشرب), colours (الألوان), adjectives (أسماء الصفة), basic verbs (الأفعال) and time vocabulary (مفردات الوقت).

After several months of learning Arabic intensively, students were immersed into the original story in Arabic using a variety of kinaesthetic and hands-on activities. Once they got to grips with the concepts within the story, a language assignment was set in which students were encouraged to think creatively and write freely in Arabic. The task was simply to work in groups to produce their own unique and creative version of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” to showcase their newly acquired vocabulary and writing skills.

Within a short period of time, students produced wonderful and some hilariously funny stories over the past four years. Some class favourites are:  

  • The Little Witch Named Seham  (الساحرة الصغيرة سهام)
  • The Very Hungry King of Scotland (ملك اسكتلندا الجائع جداً)
  • The Very Determined Arabic Student (طالب اللغة العربية المصمم جداً)
  • The Seal who Loves Magic (كلب البحر الذي يحب السحر)
  • A Boy Without a Country (ولد بدون بلد)   
  • The Fat Princess (الأميرة السمينة) 
  • The Curious Pigeon (الحمامة الفضولية)
  • The Sad Leopard (النمر الغني جداً)
  • A Lonely Dog Called Pushkin (الكلب الوحيد بوشكن)
  • The Grumpy Cat (القط الغضبان)
  • The Orientalist Goat (الماعزة المستشرقة)
  • The Sad Bike (الدراجة الحزينة جداً)
  • The Fat Frog (الضفدع السمين جداً)
  • The Very Thirsty Young Bear (الدب الصغير والعطشان جداً)
  • The Very Sad Wolf (الذئب الحزين جداً)
  • The Gay Camel (الجمل المثلي)
  • The Greedy Bear (الدب الجشع)
  • The Very Fat Wombat (الومبت السمينة جداً)
  • The Vegetarian Leopard (الفهد النباتي)
  • The Very Tired Engineer (المهندس التعبان جداً)
  • The Very Thirsty Camel (الجمل العطشان جداً)  

To share and celebrate these creative achievements, over the past two years a tea party of a homemade cake decorated as none other than the Very Hungry Caterpillar served with Moroccan mint tea was organised to mark the end of the term. This year,  after showcasing all the stories, we also had a competition with prizes for the story most voted by the students themselves.

Since these stories are so well written and rich with vocabulary and creative ideas, we felt it is a shame to let them go to waste and so we are planning to collate the several years of accumulated stories into a collection that can be accessible, hopefully soon, across the University.

This initiative was introduced and led by Mourad Diouri as part of the curriculum of the Intensive Arabic Programme which is accessible to students enrolled at the MSc Arab World Studies and the MSc in International Relations of the Middle East with Arabic. 

Mourad Diouri

Teach Yourself: Essential Arabic Vocabulary: A Handbook of Core Terms (2015)


This book is a comprehensive guide to the most essential vocabulary in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA).  It’s an ideal study companion for those in formal or high school or college and university education as well as self-learners. 

It includes the following learning features:

  • – Contemporary and commonly used vocabulary
  • – Arabic vocalization and English translations for all words 
  • – Insight and context for Arabic loanwords
  • – Grammar toolbox of essential rules and structures
  • – Key dialect words and religious expressions
  • – Reference guide to support your studies 
  • – A wide range of useful topics 
  • – Insights into Arabic language and culture.

The book’s thematic approach covers words for:

  • – home and family 
  • – work and education 
  • – travel and tourism 
  • – government and politics 
  • – media and communication 
  • – hobbies and sport; and much more.

Contents & Thematic Sets

Featuring 20 theme-based units, this reference book is designed to help you become familiar with key Arabic words.

  • Meet the author
  • Only got a minute?
  • Only got five minutes?
  • Only got ten minutes?
  • Introduction
  • How this book works
  • How to learn Arabic vocabulary?
  • Remembering new words
  • Make learning a list of words more interesting
  • Online language tools
  • The alphabet
  • Vowels and pronunciation symbols
  • Transliteration guide
  • Toolbox: Essential Grammar
    • The root word system (simplified)
    • The definite and indefinite
    • Gender
    • Nouns
    • Pronouns
    • Adverbs
    • Adjectives
    • Comparatives and superlatives
    • Connectors
    • Diminutives
    • Word order

Language Themes

  • (1) Everyday Language: Reference Vocabulary
    • Time الزمن
    • Calendar التقويم
    • Days of the week أيام الأسبوع
    • Arabic, Islamic and Gregorian calendar التقويم العربي والإسلامي والغربي
    • Numbers الأرقام
    • Colours and sizes الألوان والأحجام
    • Quantity and quality الكم والكيف
    • Describing things وصف الاشياء
    • Describing people وصف الأشخاص
    • Prepositions of location
    • Money  المال
  • (2) Personal Matters
    • Personal information المعلومات الشخصية
    • Feelings & character المشاعر
    • Appearance & clothing الشكل واللباس
    • Daily routine البرنامج اليومي
  • (3) Family & Friends العائلة والأصدقاء
    • My family عائلتي
    • Marriage الزواج
    • Children الأولاد
    • Life events  أحداث الحياة
  • (4) Education & Work التعليم والعمل
    • Studying & learning الدراسة
    • Academic subjects المواد الدراسية
    • Types of Schools
    • Study Tools 
    • Qualifications
    • Classroom language لغة الصف
    • eLearning التعليم الإلكتروني
    • Professions المهن
    • At the office في المكتب
    • Job search البحث عن وظيفة
  • (5) Food & Drink الطعام والشراب
    • Eating & cooking الأكل والطبخ
    • Meals & mealtimes الوجبات
    • Fruits الفواكه
    • Vegetables الخضراوات
    • Drinks المشروبات
    • Fast food & snacks الوجبات السريعة والخفيفة
    • Fish & meat السمك واللحم
    • At a restaurant في المطعم
    • Popular Arab dishes وجبات عربية مشهورة
  • (6) At Home في البيت
    • Living places المسكن
    • Rooms الغرف
    • Furniture  الأثاث
    • In the kitchen في المطبخ
    • Housework عمل البيت
    • Outside خارج البيت
  • (7) In the town في المدينة
    • Getting around town     التجول في المدينة
    • Shops and shopping المحلات التجارية والتسوق
    • Services الخدمات
    • Buildings البنايات
    • The market في السوق
  • (8) Travel & Tourism  السياحة والسفر
    • Transportation وسائل المواصلات
    • Tourism and sightseeing السياحة
    • Where to go?  أماكن للزيارة
    • Where to stay? أماكن للإقامة
    • Famous Tourist Sites in the Arab World المعالم السياحية المشهورة في العالم العربي
  • (9) Health & Body  الجسد والصحة
    • Body الجسد
    • Health الصحة
    • At the hospital في المستشفى
    • At the doctors عند الطبيب
    • Personal hygiene النظافة الشخصية
    • Emergencies  حالات الطوارئ
  • (10) The Wider World العالم
    • Arab World العالم العربي
    • Arab regions المناطق العربية
    • Arab countries البلدان العربية
    • Arab cities المدن العربية
    • Continents and major regions القارات والمناطق الرئيسية
    • Africa افريقيا
    • Europe أوروبا
    • Americas أمريكا الشمالية وامريكا الجنوبية
    • Asia آسيا
    • Australasia أسترالآسيا
    • Languages 
    • Varieties of Arabic
    • World Languages
    • Ethnic Groups
  • (11) Weather & Environment الطقس والبيئة
    • Weather forecast النشرة الجوية
    • Nature and environment الطبيعة والبيئة
    • Animals الحيوانات
    • Oceans and seas المحيطات والبحار
  • (12) Recreation الترفيه
    • Parties and celebrations الاحتفالات
    • Home entertainment الترفيه المنزلي
    • Outdoor activities خارجية  أنشطة
    • Hobbies and games الهوايات والألعاب
    • Individual sports الرياضة الفردية
    • Team sports الرياضة الجماعية
  • (13) Arts & Entertainment الفنون والتسلية
    • Arts الفنون
    • Theatre & cinema المسرح والسينما
    • Music الموسيقى
    • Books الكتب
    • Literature الأدب 
  • (14) Law & Order القانون
    • Crime الإجرام
    • Law & penal code القانون
    • Public safety الأمن العام
  • (14) Arabic Culture & Society المجتمع والثقافة العربية
    • Religion الدين
    • Islam الإسلام
    • Christianity المسيحية
    • Judaism اليهودية
    • Ethnic and religious groups الجماعات العرقية والدينية
    • National & religious holidays الأعياد الدينية والعطل الوطنية
  • (15) Politics & Government السياسة والحكومة
    • Politics السياسة
    • Economy الإقتصاد
    • Trade & Industry التجارة والصناعة
    • Military & Defence   الجيش والدفاع
    • Security &  Intelligence الأمن والاستخبارات 
  • (16) Media الإعلام
    • The press الصحافة
    • Radio and television الإذاعة والتلفيزيون
    • Digital & Social media وسائل الإعلام الاجتماعي
    • Technology & Communication التكنولوجيا والإتصال
    • The Internet الإنترنيت
    • Computers الكمبيوتر
    • Searching & Browsing البحث والتصفح
    • My Digital Identity هويتي الرقمية
    • Spoken Arabic اللغة الدارجة \ العامية
    • Greetings التحيات
    • Religious expressions العبارات الدينية
    • Expressing opinions التعبير عن الآراء 
    • Essential dialect words المفردات الاساسية في اللهجات العربية
  • Miscellaneous
    • Arabic Abbreviations  المختصرات العربية
    • Arabic Idioms  العبارات الاصطلاحية
    • Arabic Proverbs  الأمثال العربية
    • Arabic Collocations  المتلازمات اللفظية
    • Arabic Similes  عبارات التشبيه
    • Arabic Homonyms, Homographs& Homophones الألفاظ المتجانسة
    • Arabised words الكلمات المعرَّبة
    • Foreign Loanwords المفردات الدخيلة
    • Blended Words مفردات النحت
    • One letter words كلمات من حرف واحد  
    • Forms of Address  أشكال التخاطب
    • Personal Names أسماء الأشخاص
    • Top 100 Frequency Words in Arabic
    • You Already Speak Arabic!: Top 100 Arabic Loanwords in English المفردات المستعارة من العربية
    • Taking it further

Also available: Get Started in Beginner’s Arabic (ISBN 9781444174960), Read & Write Arabic Script Script (9781444100198) and Complete Arabic (ISBN 9781444100174). 

Teach Yourself: Read & Write Arabic Script (2011)

  • Publication Date: 30 Sept. 2011
  • Publisher: Teach Yourself Series, John Murray/Hodder Education
  • Language: English, Arabic
  • Paperback : 304 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 144410019X
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1444100198
  • Dimensions : 13.02 x 1.91 x 19.69 cm
  • Get it from → Amazon UK | Amazon US | Google Books 

Book Description

Read and write Arabic script is a clear step-by-step guide to the written language, with plenty of examples from real-life texts to show how it works in context and lots of exercises to reinforce your learning.


  • Introduction
  • Meet the author
  • How to read & write Arabic? Essential tips & hints
    • Arabic transliteration & pronunciation guide
    • Arabic script & alphabet
    • Arabic vowels & pronunciation symbols
    • Short vowels
    • Long vowels
    • Supplementary vowels
    • Summary Table: Arabic vowels & phonetic symbols
  • Arabic Consonants
    • Unit 1 Letter group no. 1 ء ا ل
    • Unit 2 Letter group no. 2 ب ت ث ن ي
    • Unit 3 Letter group no. 3 م ه ة ك
    • Unit 4 Letter group no. 4 د ذ
    • Unit 5 Letter group no. 5 ر ز و
    • Unit 6 Letter group no. 6 ج ح خ
    • Unit 7 Letter group no. 7 س ش
    • Unit 8 Letter group no. 8 ص ض ط ظ
    • Unit 9 Letter group no. 9 ع غ
    • Unit 10 Letter group no. 10 ق ف

Reading Practice

  • Arabic Alphabet with Short Vowels
  • Short Vowels
  • Long Vowels 
  • Supplementary Letters 
  • Arabic Diphthongs
  • Sun & Moon Letters
  • Arabic Tongue Twisters

Beyond Letters & Sounds

  • Unit 11    Arabic calligraphy & script styles
  • Unit 12    Arabic numerals
  • Unit 13    Arabic alphabet as numerals
  • Unit 14    Arabic handwriting
  • Unit 15    Arabic transcription
  • Unit 16    Arabic ligatures & letter combinations
  • Unit 17    Western letters in Arabic style
  • Unit 18    Arabic abbreviations
  • Unit 19 Arabic punctuation           
  • Unit 20    Arabic root word system
  • Appendices
    • Arabic Script
    • Arabic Alphabet in a Nutshell  
    • Arabic Alphabet: In isolated and connected forms
    • Arabic Alphabet: Grouped by Similar Shapes
    • Arabic Sounds 
    • Arabic Sounds: Familiar to English Speakers
    • Arabic Sounds: Unfamiliar to English Speakers
  • Vocabulary Index
    • Arabic Numerals
    • Colours
    • Days of the Week 
    • Months of the Year
    • Time Vocabulary
    • Family
    • Food & Drink 
    • Arab Countries
    • Basic Adjectives 
    • Public Signs & Notices
    • Foreign Words 
    • Common Arabic Names
    • Arabic Loanwords in English
    • Spoken Arabic
  • Similar Sounding Letters
  • Survival Expressions
  • Arabic Homonyms, Homophones & Homographs 


  • Question Words
  • Prepositions 
  • Personal Pronouns
  • Object Pronouns 
  • Subject Pronouns

Key to exercises

“One Minute Arabic” Podcast Lessons w/ Radio Lingua Network

Screenshot of the full course on iTunes

On August 31st, I headed with my family to the loch of Lomond to explore the fascinating beauty of Scotland beyond the city of Edinburgh where we live now. However, before that we had stop at the small town of Ayr (which I still can’t pronounce like the Scots do!) in the South-West Scotland to record a set of 10 short podcast lessons in collaboration with Mark Pentelton the founder and director of the Radio Lingua Network. The free audio-based course is titled “One Minute Arabic” which is a collection of 10 short podcasts in Modern Standard Arabic.

In a nutshell

  • Type of Arabic: Modern Standard Arabic
  • Number of lessons: 10 podcast-lessons
  • Presenters: Mourad Diouri & Mark Pentelton
  • Published: Aug 2011

Here is a description of the the course From Radio Lingua Network

  • This short course from the Radio Lingua Network presents ten lessons of Modern Standard Arabic.
  • Join Mark and Arabic language specialist Mourad and learn just enough Arabic to get by on a holiday or a business trip to anywhere in the Arabic-speaking world.
  • There are different varieties of Arabic, but the words and phrases used in this course will be understood from Casablanca to Kuwait.
  • Each lesson includes just over one minute of language-learning content so there’s no excuse not to learn! Remember – even a few phrases of a language can help you make friends and enjoy travel more.

To access the course: 

  1. One Minute Arabic in iTunes 
  2. One Minute Arabic, Radio Lingua Network

A Taste of Arabic (Magazine Article)


  • It is widely spoken by more than 280 million native speakers across the Arab world, comprising North African countries from the shores of Morocco, the Fertile Crescent of the Middle East, Arab Peninsula and the Gulf states. This is in addition to 250 million non-native speakers.