September 29 2022 11:16 PM E-paper Subscribe Sign in My Account Sign out

The Jordanian app that wants to teach you Arabic

A Jordanian-made app called Kaleela claims to be one of the most comprehensive Arabic learning applications out there. (Photo: Screenshot from the Kaleela app)
AMMAN — Arabic is a notoriously difficult language to use, with its distinct alphabet and wealth of vocabulary. But Kaleela, a Jordanian-made application, is helping non-native speakers learn to speak, write, and read Arabic.اضافة اعلان

Kaleela is an application that provides thoughtful ways of teaching the Arabic language to foreign learners.

Founded by Zaid Otoom, the application was first made available to the public in January of 2020, after three years of preparation.

According to project manager Ruba Hatamleh, many things distinguish Kaleela from other applications, namely that it is free of mistakes.

"Kaleela application is the first reliable source in terms of the integrity and authenticity of the information," she said in an interview with Jordan News.

The name Kaleela is derived from the book, “Kaleela wa Domna.” According to Hatamleh, the book does more than tell stories. It aims to give readers moral advice to help them improve themselves — not unlike the Kaleela application.  

(Photo: Screenshot from the Kaleela app)

Hatamleh also explained some of Kaleela’s key features: the app is made up of several levels and users can go on a learning journey based on international standards, including gradation, sequence, and construction. Users can also choose the topic they want to start learning and switch between topics accordingly.

(Photo: Screenshot from the Kaleela app)

The app covers all the skills required to master the language, including reading, writing, speaking, and listening.

"Providing all (necessary) skills in one application was not something easy," Hatamleh said.

“It is rare to find an application that teaches grammar, and we are so proud to have this section,” she added.

In addition to grammar and vocabulary sections, a special section was worked by phonetics specialists and provides the sounds of each letter and word.

“Kaleela contains colloquial dialect rules, which is exciting and vital to helping foreigners understand the everyday Arabic language, since most do not use the classical language.”

“We amazingly merged the Jordanian (and) Palestinian dialects,” she added. Kaleela also uses the MSA (Modern Standard Arabic) system.

Currently, Egyptian, Syrian, Jordanian, and Palestinian dialects are available on the application. The team is still working on the Saudi and Moroccan dialects.

The application also teaches foreigners advanced levels of Arabic: it gives audible and translated texts, forms Arabic letters, and plans to add more advanced options like Arabic analysis.

In addition to language skills, Kaleela also teaches Arab culture. Many articles emphasize Arab hospitality, so that foreigners can have a good understanding of all the aspects of Arab tradition.

According to the available languages section, the application supports English, French, Chinese, German and six other languages. 

“At the end of Kaleela’s users' journey, they will be able to speak and write about different topics in economy, medicine, tourism, and other sections,” Hatamleh explained.

“It is an integrated application in all aspects, as it is entertaining and adds fun to education in terms of its design and the variety of exercises and videos.”

There is a free trial period for users, after which they can choose the subscription period they want.

“We are not interested in profits now as much as we are interested in spreading globally,” she said.

Kaleela is available on the iOS and Android and will be available soon through a website, so that learners can also access it from their laptops.

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