Learn to Speak Hebrew

Hebrew Podcasts
Lessons 1-2 Introduction
Learning a new language requires work and commitment, but the unique dialog format of Hebrew Podcasts makes it easy and fun. You can play each lesson multiple times to internalize the material, and you can repeat each line out loud to practice pronunciation and memorize expressions. The lessons are packed with tidbits of information about the features of the Hebrew language including idiomatic and colloquial expressions and grammar rules. The lessons also touch on Israeli cultural and geographical topics that you'll find useful especially if you plan to visit Israel. This electronic book contains the first two lesson in the Hebrew Podcasts Learn to Speak Hebrew series. You can find all the lessons at http://HebrewPodcasts.com/

The audio files for these lessons are available as a free download at http://HebrewPodcasts.com/

The Hebrew Podcasts web site provides additional resources for Hebrew learners by membership. These includes video versions of each lesson that you can watch online or on an iPhone or iPod. They also include flashcards to practice the vocabulary and expressions in each lesson. You can try the flashcards for lesson 1 at http://hebrewpodcasts.com/cards/flashcards1.php

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© Yedwab, 2009. All rights reserved.

1

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

Hello and welcome to Hebrew Podcasts. If you are just starting to learn Hebrew and find that our lesson 1 goes too fast, then this easy-level lesson is for you. It’s designed to prepare you for lesson 1 by covering the basic vocabulary that you’ll need in that lesson. Before we begin, I’d like to encourage you to download the readalong lesson guide that goes together with this lesson. You can download it from our web site at http://hebrewpodcasts.com. And please let us know what you think about our podcast and give us any suggestions that you may have for how we can improve it. You can contact us by e-mail at learn@hebrewpodcasts.com or using the Feedback form on our web site. I’m Danny and Noa is here to help me. !‫שלום נועה‬ !‫שלום דני‬ Let’s begin. A great way to learn a language is to speak it out loud. So don’t be shy! Repeat after us. Let’s give it a try. I’ll greet Noa Shalom and you repeat after me: !‫שלום נועה‬ Shà-lom No-à ►the clock indicates that we pause here for you to repeat !‫שלום נועה‬ Very good! Now let’s see how to introduce ourselves. Now suppose that I wish to say “I’m Danny”. First, let’s hear how to say “I”. Let’s repeat after Noa ‫אני‬ À-ni ‫אני‬ Excellent! Now I’m ready to say “I’m Danny” ‫אני דני‬ À-ni Dà-ni ‫אני דני‬ Noa, now it’s your turn ‫אני נועה‬ À-ni No-à ‫אני נועה‬ Well done!

Transcription
We’ll use transcription in our lesson guides to help you read Hebrew. You should read the transcription as if it was English. We’ll use hyphens to help the pronunciation. We’ll use é and à to better approximate the Hebrew sounds. Are you familiar with the expression déjà vu, or the word résumé? If so, then you should pronounce these two accents accordingly. Otherwise, pronounce é like the e in let and pronounce à like the a in bark. Finally we’ll use h (the letter h with an underscore) to denote the sound of the letter Het (‫ .)ח‬You should refer to lesson 2 to learn more about this sound. You’ll see transcription in green. Here are a couple of examples: Shà-lom À-ni ‫שלום‬ ‫אני‬

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Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

Now let’s use the second person. I’ll say “You’re Noa” ‫את נועה‬ Àt No-à ‫את נועה‬ ‫ את‬means you. This is the feminine form. Let’s hear the masculine form. Noa will say “You’re Danny” ‫אתה דני‬ À-tà Dà-ni ‫אתה דני‬ ‫ אתה‬mean you when speaking to a male. Next, let’s learn how to say thank you. Repeat after Noa ‫תודה‬ To-dà ‫תודה‬ Wonderful! Okay, Noa, let’s say some really simple sentences. To do that, let’s learn a few nouns and a few verbs. Let’s start with the nouns. Repeat after Noa, a book is ‫ספר‬ Sé-fér ‫ספר‬ Hebrew is ‫עברית‬ Iv-rit ‫עברית‬ A teacher is ‫מורה‬ Mo-ré ‫מורה‬ And a house or a home is ‫בית‬ Bà-yit ‫בית‬ Great! Now for the verbs. The following verbs are all in the present tense. We say these verbs differently depending on the gender of their subject. In the following examples, Noa will speak about me, so we’ll hear the masculine form. Repeat after Noa, “You can” ‫אתה יכול‬ À-tà yà-hol ‫אתה יכול‬ Soreq Cave is an active cave with a uniquely dense concentration of stalactites. The cave was discovered in 1968 near Bet Shemesh. It is 83 meters long, 60 meters wide and 15 meters high. Some of the stalactites have been dated as 300,000 years old. Timna Valley Park is a National Park in the Negev desert near Eilat. The Park is noted for its natural sandstone formations. It includes what are believed to be the oldest Copper mines in the world, dating back to at least 4000 BC and worked almost continuously by many civilizations including the Egyptians and Romans.

Postcard from Israel

Postcard from Israel

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Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

You go ‫אתה הולך‬ À-tà ho-léh ‫אתה הולך‬ You love ‫אתה אוהב‬ À-tà o-hév ‫אתה אוהב‬ You play ‫אתה משחק‬ À-tà mé-sà-hék ‫אתה משחק‬ You learn or you study ‫אתה לומד‬ À-tà lo-méd ‫אתה לומד‬ Outstanding! Okay, we’re ready for a simple sentence. How would we say “Danny is learning Hebrew”? ‫דני לומד עברית‬ Dà-ni lo-méd iv-rit ‫דני לומד עברית‬ Fantastic! And “Danny loves Hebrew”? ‫דני אוהב עברית‬ Dà-ni o-hév iv-rit ‫דני אוהב עברית‬ Good job! For the next two sentences we need a preposition. We want to use the words “to the”, in Hebrew we simply add ַ‫ ל‬in front of the word. So “to the house” is ‫ ,לַ בית‬and “to the city” is ‫.לַ עיר‬ So, Noa, how do we say “Danny is going to the house”? ‫דני הולך לבית‬ Dà-ni ho-léh là-bà-it ‫דני הולך לבית‬ Bravo! And “Danny is going to the city”, or “Danny is going to town”? ‫דני הולך לעיר‬ Dà-ni ho-léh là-ir ‫דני הולך לעיר‬ Nice! United Buddy Bears in Jerusalem In 2007, the “United Buddy Bears“ stood hand in hand in Cairo along the River Nile, for the first time promoting their international unifying message in an Arab country. In summer, they arrived in Jerusalem, where the municipality facilitated the exhibition on Safra Square right in front of the town hall and in close proximity to the Old City. The Buddy Bears advocate living together in peace and harmony.

Postcard from Israel

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Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

Now, a couple of adjectives. Those are words that describe a noun. To say “new”, it’s ‫חדש‬ Hà-dàsh ‫חדש‬ And to say “nice”, it’s ‫נחמד‬ Néh-màd ‫נחמד‬ Awesome! So now let’s add some words together. Noa, how about “a new house” ‫בית חדש‬ Bà-yit hà-dàsh ‫בית חדש‬ “A new teacher” ‫מורה חדש‬ Mo-ré hà-dàsh ‫מורה חדש‬ “A new book” ‫ספר חדש‬ Sé-fér hà-dàsh ‫ספר חדש‬ “A nice teacher” ‫מורה נחמד‬ Mo-ré néh-màd ‫מורה נחמד‬ And “a nice house” ‫בית נחמד‬ Bà-yit néh-màd ‫בית נחמד‬ That’s grand! Next, let’s learn how to ask a question. A simple question word that means what is ‫מה‬ So I’ll call Noa and she’ll respond with what? Noa? ?‫מה‬ Mà? ?‫מה‬ We already know how to say new, so to ask what’s new, we say ?‫מה חדש‬ Mà hà-dàsh? ?‫מה חדש‬
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5

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

Good! Now let’s learn to ask “How are you?” ?‫מה שלומך‬ Mà shlom-hà? ?‫מה שלומך‬ ?‫ מה שלומך‬that's “how are you”? And to answer, let’s learn the word for “good” ‫טוב‬ Tov ‫טוב‬ And we already know how to say thank you. So let’s practice ?‫מה שלומך‬ Mà shlom-hà? ?‫מה שלומך‬ And I answer !‫טוב תודה‬ Tov to-dà! !‫טוב תודה‬ That’s good, thank you! You’re doing really well. Learning a language is all about practice, repetition, and recitation. It helps consolidate all these new words in the brain. At this point it’s a good time to mention that in Hebrew nouns have a gender and other parts of the sentence such as verbs and adjectives also change form to agree with the gender of the subject. So far we’ve heard a lot of the masculine form because Noa was talking about me or to me. Now let’s go back and change some of our examples to their feminine form by having Noa speak of herself. Noa, how would you say that you love Hebrew? ‫אני אוהבת עברית‬ À-ni o-hé-vét iv-rit ‫אני אוהבת עברית‬ We see ‫ אוהב‬turns into ‫.אוהבת‬ Let’s see another example. How do you say “a new city”? ‫עיר חדשה‬ Ir hà-dà-shà ‫עיר חדשה‬ We see ‫ חדש‬turns into ‫ .חדשה‬That’s because the word for city, ‫,עיר‬ is a feminine noun. This concept of all nouns having gender feels very strange to English speakers and makes learning Hebrew harder. But don’t be discouraged. You’ll get the hang of it, I promise.

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6

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

Some nouns, like animals or professions have two forms, one for male and one for female. There are examples of that in English too, like an actor and an actress and a rooster and a hen. In our lesson, we learned how to say a teacher, ‫ .מורה‬Well, that was the word for a male teacher. For a female teacher the word is ‫מורה‬ Mo-rà ‫מורה‬ And to say “new teacher” speaking of a female teacher ‫מורה חדשה‬ Mo-rà hà-dà-shà ‫מורה חדשה‬ And to say “nice teacher” speaking of a female teacher ‫מורה נחמדה‬ Mo-rà néh-mà-dà ‫מורה נחמדה‬ Very good! Let’s look at another example. I learn Hebrew, when spoken by a woman, it’s ‫אני לומדת עברית‬ À-ni lo-mé-dét iv-rit ‫אני לומדת עברית‬ Excellent! Noa, I hope you’re not tired yet because we have some more words to learn so we can make some more sentences. Let’s learn how to say he and she. Let’s repeat after Noa, “he is learning Hebrew” ‫הוא לומד עברית‬ Hoo lo-méd iv-rit ‫הוא לומד עברית‬ And “she is learning Hebrew” ‫היא לומדת עברית‬ Hee lo-mé-dét iv-rit ‫היא לומדת עברית‬ Well done! Now let’s see a couple of verbs in the infinitive. The infinitive is the form of the verb that describes the action: to tell and to sing. Let’s hear these two verbs in the infinitive. To tell is ‫לספר‬ Lé-sà-pér ‫לספר‬

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Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

And to sing is ‫לשיר‬ Là-shir ‫לשיר‬ Wonderful! Now let’s see two examples with these two verbs. To say “She can tell” or “she is able to tell” is ‫היא יכולה לספר‬ Hee yé-ho-là lé-sà-pér ‫היא יכולה לספר‬ Fantastic! Noa, how would you say “she can sing”? ‫היא יכולה לשיר‬ Hee yé-ho-là là-shir ‫היא יכולה לשיר‬ Good job! The word for a song is ‫ .שיר‬In plural, the word for songs is ‫.שירים‬ So to say “she can sing songs”, we would say ‫היא יכולה לשיר שירים‬ Hee yé-ho-là là-shir shi-rim ‫היא יכולה לשיר שירים‬ Nice! Noa, how do you say “with us”? ‫איתנו‬ Ee-tà-noo ‫איתנו‬ So “she is learning with us” or “she is studying with us” would be ‫היא לומדת איתנו‬ Hee lo-mé-dét ee-tà-noo ‫היא לומדת איתנו‬ Very good! Let’s see a variation. “She is coming with us” ‫היא באה איתנו‬ Hee bà-à i-tà-noo ‫היא באה איתנו‬ ‫ באה‬that's the verb for coming. It’s the feminine form. To hear the masculine form, which is ‫ ,בא‬let’s see how to say “He is coming with us” ‫הוא בא איתנו‬ Hoo bà i-tà-noo ‫הוא בא איתנו‬ Super!
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8

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

That’s it for today. Please remember that learning to speak a new language requires practice. You need to speak out loud and repeatedly. I hope that this lesson will make lesson 1 easier to learn and more enjoyable. Now you’re ready for lesson 1 where we’ll meet Rina. She’ll tell us about her school and about her teacher. We’ll practice some greetings and learn some new words. Until then !‫שלום ולהתראות‬ Oh, yes, ‫ ,להתראות‬that’s goodbye. !‫שלום ולהתראות‬

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9

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1A – Prelude to Lesson 1
Easy Level

Lesson 1A – Exercise
Match each picture with the correct Hebrew word. Draw a line between the word and the picture.

‫ מורה‬mo-rà ‫ ספר‬sé-fér ‫ בית‬bà-yit ‫ עיר‬eer ‫ לשיר‬là-shir ‫ חדש‬hà-dàsh ‫ לומדת‬lo-mé-dét ‫ מה‬mà ‫ הולכת‬ho-lé-hét

The answers to this exercise are available online at http://www.hebrewpodcasts.com/pdf/Answers_001A.pdf

© Both the podcast and this accompanying lesson guide are copyrighted material. All rights reserved. You may not distribute these materials without permission from the copyright owner.
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10

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1 – Introduction
Beginner Level

Hello and welcome to Hebrew Podcasts. Today’s podcast is our first lesson. In this lesson you’ll learn spoken Hebrew by listening to a dialog and a discussion of vocabulary, grammar, and idioms. With each podcast there’s a lesson guide where you can read the transcript, see the full translation, get additional information, and do a few exercises to reinforce the lesson. You can download the lesson guide from our web site at http://hebrewpodcasts.com. In this first beginner-level lesson we’ll meet Rina. She’ll help us practice some greetings and learn some new words. Let’s begin. Hello Rina! Hello Danny. How are you? Great, thank you. How are you? All right. !‫שלום רינה‬ Shà-lom Ri-nà! ?‫שלום דני. מה שלומך‬ Shà-lom Dà-ni. Mà shlom-hà? ?‫נהדר, תודה. מה שלומך‬ Né-hé-dàr, to-dà. Mà shlo-méh? .‫בסדר גמור‬ Bé-sé-dér gà-moor.

Transcription
We’ll use transcription in our lesson guides to help you read new Hebrew words. You should read the transcription as if it was English. We’ll use hyphens to help the pronunciation. We’ll use é and à to better approximate the Hebrew sounds. You should pronounce those as you would in French. Are you familiar with the expression déjà vu, or the word résumé? If so, then you should pronounce these two accents accordingly. Otherwise, pronounce é like the e in let and pronounce à like the a in bark or the u in up. Finally we’ll use h (the letter h with an underscore) to denote the sound of the letter Het (‫ )ח‬or the loose version of the letter Kaf (‫ .)כ‬You should refer to lesson 2 to hear this sound. You’ll see transcription in green. Here are a couple of examples: Shà-lom Bé-sé-dér gà-moor ‫שלום‬ ‫בסדר גמור‬

I greeted Rina by saying ‫ .שלום‬This is the most common greeting in Hebrew and it can mean either hello or goodbye. Hello Rina! !‫שלום רינה‬ Shà-lom Ri-nà!

The word, ‫ ,שלום‬can also mean peace or well being. We see it used next when Rina asks me “How are you?” How are you? ?‫מה שלומך‬ Mà shlom-hà?

In Hebrew, ‫ שלומ‬is a single-word combination of the words: ‫ .שלום של‬This is what we say to a male person. ‫ שלומ‬is a combination of the words: ‫ ,שלום של‬which is what we say to a female person. Let’s practice: Hello Rina. How are you? Hello Danny. How are you? ? ‫שלום רינה. מה שלומ‬ Shà-lom Ri-nà. Mà shlo-méh? ? ‫שלום דני. מה שלומ‬ Shà-lom Dà-ni. Mà shlom-hà?

Right-to-left
Hebrew is written right-to-left, line by line going down the page. In our English text, if we include some Hebrew words, then read the text as you would read any English text, but when you get to the Hebrew words, then read them from right to the left. For example, follow the arrows:
Rina said ‫ בסדר גמור‬which means “all 1 2 3 right”.
4

I answered you, Rina, with ‫ .נהדר, תודה‬Great, thank you. Rina, if I wanted to say ‘thank you very much!’ I would say: To-dà rà-bà When I asked you how you are, Rina, you said: Bé-sé-dér gà-moor ‫בסדר גמור‬ !‫תודה רבה‬

That means all right. ‫ בסדר‬means all right, ‫ בסדר גמור‬emphasizes that it’s completely all right. Let’s listen to this short dialog again. This time we’ll pause after each line so that you can practice by repeating out loud:
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11

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1 – Introduction
Beginner Level

Hello Rina! Hello Danny. How are you? Great, thank you. How are you? All right.

!‫שלום רינה‬ Shà-lom Ri-nà! ?‫שלום דני. מה שלומך‬ Shà-lom Dà-ni. Mà shlom-hà? ?‫נהדר, תודה. מה שלומך‬ Né-hé-dàr, to-dà. Mà shlo-méh? .‫בסדר גמור‬ Bé-sé-dér gà-moor.

Nikkud

ִ ‫נ ד‬

Okay, now suppose I wanted to introduce myself to you Rina. I would say: Hello, I’m Danny. .‫שלום, אני דני‬ Shà-lom, à-ni dà-ni.

This means, hello, I’m Danny. Rina, you would then respond with: Pleased to meet you! I’m Rina. .‫נעים מאוד! אני רינה‬ Nà-im mé-od! à-ni Ri-nà.

‫ נעים מאוד‬is an expression that means ‘Pleased to meet you!’. Literally, it means ‘very pleasant’. That’s a very useful expression. Pleased to meet you! Next, I’m going to ask Rina if she goes to school. Rina, do you go to school? ?‫רינה, את הולכת לבית ספר‬ Ri-nà, àt ho-lé-hét lé-béit sé-fér? !‫נעים מאוד‬ Nà-im mé-od!

Hebrew vowel marks, or nikkud, are useful for beginner readers. They tell you how to pronounce and let you distinguish between words that are otherwise spelled the same. For example, without nikkud, the word ‫ שלומך‬is written identically in its masculine ‫ שְ ל מ‬and feminine ֶ‫שְ ל מ‬ forms. Experienced readers, however, don’t rely on nikkud. They read whole words rather than phonetically and they can resolve ambiguity from the context. Modern Hebrew books, newspapers and web sites do not provide nikkud. In our lessons guides we will have Hebrew text typed without nikkud. You can read more about nikkud on Wikipedia.

How are you...?
How are you? How do you do? How are you? What’s up? How are you feeling? What’s new? ? ‫מה שלומ‬ Mà shlom-hà? ?‫מה נשמע‬ Mà nish-mà? ?‫איך המרגש‬ Éyh hà-màr-gàsh? ?‫מה חדש‬ Mà hà-dàsh?

In Hebrew, a question is often formed simply by the way we emphasize and without changing word order. For example, the statement: you go, is ‫ את הולכת‬and when we turn it into a question: do you go? It simply becomes ?‫את הולכת‬ Finally, ‫ ,בית ספר‬school, is composed of two words, ‫.בית ספר‬ ‫ ספר‬means a book, and ‫ בית ספר‬literally means book house. ‫ לבית ספר‬means to school. Rina, let’s listen to your answer Yes. I go to the school Kidmah. .‫כן. אני הולכת לבית הספר קידמה‬ Kén, à-ni ho-lé-hét lé-béit hà-sé-fér kid-mà.

You said yes, you go to the school named Kidmah. In my question, we heard ‫ ,לבית ספר‬to school, but when Rina answered, we heard ‫ ,לבית הספר‬to the school. ‫ ,הולכת‬that’s a verb that means go. In Hebrew, verb forms change based on the gender and plurality of the subject. In our case, the subject is Rina. ‫ הולכת‬is therefore the feminine form of the verb to go. Let’s consider some variations.

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12

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1 – Introduction
Beginner Level

If Avi, a man, wanted to say ‘I go to school’, he would say... ‫אני הולך לבית הספר‬ À-ni ho-léh lé-béit hà-sé-fér Rina, if you and Noa, two girls, wanted to say ‘we go to the city’, you would say... ‫אנחנו הולכות לעיר‬ À-nàh-noo hol-hot là-ir Let’s hear my question and Rina’s answer again. ?‫רינה, את הולכת לבית ספר‬ Ri-nà, àt ho-lé-hét lé-béit sé-fér? Yes. I go to the school Kidmah. .‫כן. אני הולכת לבית הספר קידמה‬ Kén, à-ni ho-lé-hét lé-béit hà-sé-fér kid-mà. Rina, do you go to school? So, Rina, please tell us about your Hebrew Teacher, ‫.המורה לעברית‬ I love the Hebrew teacher. .‫אני אוהבת את המורה לעברית‬ À-ni o-hé-vét ét hà-mo-rà lé-iv-rit. I/you/she go/goes (female singular)

Present Tense to go ‫ללכת‬ Là-lé-hét
‫אני/אתה/הוא‬ ‫הולך‬ À-ni/À-tà/Hoo ho-léh ‫אני/את/היא‬ ‫הולכת‬ À-ni/Àt/Hee ho-lé-hét

I/you/he go/goes (male singular)

‫אנחנו/אתם/הם‬ we/you/they go ‫הולכים‬ (male plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tém/Hém hol-him ‫אנחנו/אתן/הן‬ we/you/they go ‫הולכות‬ (female plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tén/Hén hol-hot ‫דני ורינה הולכים לתל אביב‬ Dà-ni vé-ri-nà hol-him lé-tél à-viv Danny and Rina go to Tel Aviv (Danny and Rina are going to Tel Aviv)

Rina loves her Hebrew teacher. We hear ‫ ,אוהבת‬which is the feminine form of the verb to love. ‫ עברית‬is Hebrew. ‫ לעברית‬means of Hebrew – the teacher of Hebrew. Let’s try some variations Rina, if you were speaking about a male English teacher, then you would say... The English Teacher ‫המורה לאנגלית‬ Hà-mo-ré lé-àn-glit

Present Tense to love ‫לאהוב‬ Lé-é-hov
‫אני/אתה/הוא‬ ‫אוהב‬ À-ni/À-tà/Hoo o-hév ‫אני/את/היא‬ ‫אוהבת‬ À-ni/Àt/Hee o-hé-vét

And to speak about both teachers ‘my teachers’, you would say... my teachers Okay, Rina, tell us more about your Hebrew teacher: She is a new teacher from Tel-Aviv. She is very nice and she plays with us and sings songs with us. ‫היא מורה חדשה‬ Hee mo-rà hà-dà-shà .‫מתל אביב‬ mi-tél à-viv. ‫היא נחמדה מאוד‬ Hee néh-mà-dà mé-od ‫והיא משחקת איתנו‬ vé-hee mé-sà-hé-két ee-tà-noo .‫ושרה איתנו שירים‬ vé-shà-rà ee-tà-noo shi-rim. ‫המורים שלי‬ Hà-mo-rim shé-li

I/you/he love/loves (male singular) I/you/she love/loves (female singular)

‫אנחנו/אתם/הם‬ we/you/they love ‫אוהבים‬ (male plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tém/Hém o-hà-vim ‫אנחנו/אתן/הן‬ we/you/they love ‫אוהבות‬ (female plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tén/Hén o-hà-vot ‫דני אוהב לשיר‬ Dà-ni o-hév là-shir Danny loves to sing

Okay, we heard quite a bit here. Let’s examine what we heard: Rina, you said that your Hebrew teacher is new Yes. She is a new teacher. .‫כן. היא מורה חדשה‬ Kén. Hee mo-rà hà-dà-shà.

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13

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1 – Introduction
Beginner Level
‫ חדשה‬is the feminine singular form of the Hebrew adjective ‫ .חדש‬If you were talking about your teachers—in plural—you would say... New teachers ‫מורים חדשים‬ Mo-rim hà-dà-shim

Present Tense to play ‫לשחק‬ Lé-sà-hék

Rina’s teacher is from Tel-Aviv. Let’s listen to that again in the dialog: She is a new teacher from Tel-Aviv. .‫היא מורה חדשה מתל אביב‬ Hee mo-rà hà-dà-shà mi-tél à-viv.

‫אני/אתה/הוא‬ I/you/he play/plays ‫משחק‬ (male singular) À-ni/À-tà/Hoo mé-sà-hék ‫אני/את/היא‬ I/you/she play/plays ‫משחקת‬ (female singular) À-ni/Àt/Hee mé-sà-hé-két ‫אנחנו/אתם/הם‬ we/you/they play ‫משחקים‬ (male plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tém/Hém mé-sàh-kim ‫אנחנו/אתן/הן‬ we/you/they play ‫משחקות‬ (female plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tén/Hén mé-sàh-kot ‫ילדות משחקות בבית הספר‬ Hà-yé-là-dot mé-sàh-kot bé-béit hà-sé-fér The girls play at school

Hebrew uses prefixes like ‫ ל‬in ‫ ,לעברית‬or ‫ מ‬in ‫ .מתל אביב‬Those prefixes are the prepositions of, and from, respectively. Next Rina told us that her teacher is very nice. She is very nice is She is very nice ‫היא נחמדה מאוד‬ Hee néh-mà-dà mé-od

She is very nice and she plays with us. Let’s listen to how Rina said that: ‫היא נחמדה מאוד והיא משחקת איתנו‬ Hee néh-mà-dà mé-od vé-hee mé-sà-hé-két ee-tà-noo Let’s hear that again ‫היא נחמדה מאוד והיא משחקת איתנו‬ Hee néh-mà-dà mé-od vé-hee mé-sà-hé-két ee-tà-noo Rina’s new teacher also sings with the kids. So Rina, Do you like to sing? Yes, it’s nice. I’m learning to sing Hanukkah songs. Like for example “Ma'oz Tzur Y'shu'ati ” ?‫את אוהבת לשיר‬ Àt o-hé-vét là-shir? .‫כן, זה נחמד‬ Kén. Zé néh-màd. ‫אני לומדת לשיר‬ À-ni lo-mé-dét là-shir .‫שירים של חנוכה‬ shi-rim shél hà-noo-kà. ‫כמו למשל‬ Kmo lé-mà-shàl "...‫"מעוז צור ישועתי‬ “mà-oz tsoor yé-shoo-à-ti…”

To sing, ‫ ,לשיר‬is nice, ‫.זה נחמד‬ So Rina, what song are you learning now for Hanukkah? I’m learning to sing “Ma'oz Tzur Y'shu'ati ” ‫אני לומדת לשיר‬ À-ni lo-mé-dét là-shir "...‫"מעוז צור ישועתי‬ “mà-oz tsoor yé-shoo-à-ti…”

‫ ,לומדת‬that’s another verb in its feminine singular present tense, just like ‫ הולכת‬and ‫.משחקת‬ Before we conclude our lesson, let’s listen again to the entire dialog. We’ll pause after each line for you to repeat it out loud.

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14

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1 – Introduction
Beginner Level

Hello Rina! Hello Danny. How are you? Great, thank you. How are you? All right. Rina, do you go to school? Yes. I go to the school Kidmah. I love the Hebrew teacher. She is a new teacher from Tel-Aviv. She is very nice and she plays with us and sings with us. Do you like to sing? Yes, it’s nice.” I’m learning to sing Hanukkah songs. Like for example “Ma'oz Tzur Y'shu'ati ”

!‫שלום רינה‬ Shà-lom Ri-nà! ?‫שלום דני. מה שלומך‬ Shà-lom Dà-ni. Mà shlom-hà? ?‫נהדר, תודה. מה שלומך‬ Né-hé-dàr, to-dà. Mà shlo-méh? .‫בסדר גמור‬ Bé-sé-dér gà-moor. ?‫רינה, את הולכת לבית ספר‬ Ri-nà, àt ho-lé-hét lé-béit sé-fér? ‫כן. אני הולכת‬ Kén, à-ni ho-lé-hét .‫לבית הספר קידמה‬ lé-béit hà-sé-fér kid-mà. ‫אני אוהבת‬ À-ni o-hé-vét .‫את המורה לעברית‬ ét hà-mo-rà lé-iv-rit. ‫היא מורה חדשה‬ Hee mo-rà hà-dà-shà .‫מתל אביב‬ mi-tél à-viv. ‫היא נחמדה מאוד‬ Hee néh-mà-dà mé-od ‫והיא משחקת איתנו‬ vé-hee mé-sà-hé-két ee-tà-noo .‫ושרה איתנו שירים‬ vé-shà-rà ee-tà-noo shi-rim. ?‫את אוהבת לשיר‬ Àt o-hé-vét là-shir? .‫כן, זה נחמד‬ Kén. Zé néh-màd. ‫אני לומדת לשיר‬ À-ni lo-mé-dét là-shir .‫שירים של חנוכה‬ shi-rim shél hà-noo-kà. ‫כמו למשל‬ Kmo lé-mà-shàl "...‫"מעוז צור ישועתי‬ “mà-oz tsoor yé-shoo-à-ti…”

Adjective Nice ‫נחמד‬ Néh-màd
‫אני/אתה/הוא‬ ‫נחמד‬ À-ni/À-tà/Hoo néh-màd

I am/you are/he is nice (m. singular)

‫אני/את/היא‬ I am/you are/she is ‫נחמדה‬ nice (f. singular) À-ni/Àt/Hee néh-mà-dà ‫אנחנו/אתם/הם‬ we are/you are/they ‫נחמדים‬ are nice (m. plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tém/Hém néh-mà-dim ‫אנחנו/אתן/הן‬ we are/you are/they ‫נחמדות‬ are nice (f. plural) À-nàh-noo/À-tén/Hén néh-mà-dot ‫מורים נחמדים‬ Mo-rim néh-mà-dim Nice teachers ‫מורות נחמדות‬ Mo-rot néh-mà-dot Nice teachers (referring to a group of allfemale teachers)

Hanukkah

‫חנוכה‬

Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, celebrates the re-kindling of the Temple menorah at the time of the Maccabee rebellion. It is an eight-day Jewish holiday beginning on the 25th day of the month of Kislev, which may fall anytime from late November to late December.

That’s it for today. In our next lesson we’ll meet Noa and we’ll review the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Until then !‫שלום ולהתראות‬

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15

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 1 – Introduction
Beginner Level

Lesson 1 – Exercises
Match each sentence with its Hebrew translation. Then draw a line to connect them. I am going to school I love the teacher The teacher is nice I am learning to sing The teacher plays with us ‫אני אוהבת את המורה‬ À-ni o-hé-vét ét hà-mo-rà ‫אני לומדת לשיר‬ À-ni lo-mé-dét là-shir ‫אני הולכת לבית ספר‬ À-ni ho-lé-hét lé-béit sé-fér ‫המורה משחקת איתנו‬ Hà-mo-rà mé-sà-hé-két ee-tà-noo ‫המורה נחמדה‬ Hà-mo-rà néh-mà-dà

Select the correct form of the verb and write it in the space. Pay attention to gender and plurality. 1. Ri-nà __________ lé-béit sé-fér. Hol-him Ho-léh Ho-lé-hét 2. Hoo __________ ét hà-mo-rà. O-hév O-hà-vim O-hà-vot 3. Hà-mo-rim __________. Néh-màd Néh-mà-dim Néh-mà-dà 4. A-nàh-noo __________. Mé-sà-hé-két Mé-sà-hék Mé-sàh-kim 5. Hém __________ shi-rim shél hà-noo-kà. Là-màd Lom-dim Lo-mé-dét .‫1. רינה ________ לבית ספר‬ ‫א( הולכים‬ ‫ב( הולך‬ ‫ג( הולכת‬ .‫2. הוא ________ את המורה‬ ‫א( אוהב‬ ‫ב( אוהבים‬ ‫ג( אוהבות‬ .________ ‫3. המורים‬ ‫א( נחמד‬ ‫ב( נחמדים‬ ‫ג( נחמדה‬ .________ ‫4. אנחנו‬ ‫א( משחקת‬ ‫ב( משחק‬ ‫ג( משחקים‬ .‫5. הם ________ שירים של חנוכה‬ ‫א( למד‬ ‫ב( לומדים‬ ‫ג( לומדת‬

The answers to this exercise are available online at http://www.hebrewpodcasts.com/pdf/Answers_001.pdf © Both the podcast and this accompanying lesson guide are copyrighted material. All rights reserved. You may not distribute these materials without permission from the copyright owner.
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16

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

Hello, and welcome to Lesson 2 of Hebrew Podcasts. In this beginner-level lesson we’ll review the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. We’ll say the name of each letter and hear a word or two that begin with that letter. We’ll then discuss pronunciation. Here to help us is Noa. Hello Noa. Hello. Noa, let’s begin with the first letter of the alphabet... Alef (À-léf) ‫אלף‬ .‫שלום נועה‬ Shà-lom no-à !‫שלום‬

Transcription
We’ll use transcription in our lesson guides to help you read new Hebrew words. You should read the transcription as if it was English. We’ll use hyphens to help the pronunciation. We’ll use é and à to better approximate the Hebrew sounds. You should pronounce those as you would in French. Are you familiar with the expression déjà vu, or the word résumé? If so, then you should pronounce these two accents accordingly. Otherwise, pronounce é like the e in let and pronounce à like the a in bark or the u in up. Finally we’ll use h (the letter h with an underscore) to denote the sound of the letter Het (‫ )ח‬or the loose version of the letter Kaf (‫ .)כ‬You should refer to lesson 2 to hear this sound.

‫א‬

This letter, ‫ ,אלף‬is one of a few letters in Hebrew that can serve as either a consonant or a vowel. Hebrew uses accents called Nikkud rather than vowel letters to indicate the sound. There are five basic sounds in Hebrew: ַ‫( א‬À), ֵ‫( א‬É), ִ‫( א‬EE), ֹ ‫( א‬O), and ֻ‫( א‬OO). We should mention that in modern Hebrew writing, the Nikkud is simply omitted. You’ll need to read whole words and remember how to pronounce them. So ‫ אלף‬is mostly used as a consonant. Let’s see an example... A lion Àr-yé ‫אריה‬

That’s a lion – ‫ .אריה‬The ַ‫ א‬sound comes from the throat. It sounds like the u in up, but a bit more from the throat. Noa, what’s the second letter in Hebrew? Bet (Bét) ‫בית‬

The Hebrew Alphabet
Hebrew letters look quite different than English, some of their sounds are not found in English, and they are written from right to left, nevertheless, the two alphabets are not as different as it first appears. For starters, even the word alphabet is similar to the Hebrew ‫ .אלפבית‬Alphabet originates from the first two letters in Hebrew, ‫ אלף‬and ‫ ,בית‬as well as the Greek alpha and beta. Consider the following 12 consonants. They are in the same order in Hebrew as their equivalent sounding letters in English. ‫ת ש ר ק פ נ מ ל כ ד ב א‬ A B D K L MN P Q R S T

‫ב‬

The letter ‫ בית‬has an interesting quality. It has two possible sounds. The first is a stressed sound that’s similar to the letter B, and the second is a loose sound similar to the letter V. Let’s see an example of the former... A duck Bàr-vàz ‫ברווז‬

That’s a duck – ‫ .ברווז‬We hear the B sound in ‫ .ברווז‬For an example of the V sound of ‫ בית‬you may remember that in our previous lesson we learned the word ‫ ,אוהבת‬which means ‘loves’. You can here the V sound in ‫.אוהבת‬ Gimel (Gi-mél) ‫גימל‬

‫ג‬
‫גמל‬

The letter ‫ גימל‬is pronounced like G in go. Let’s see an example... A camel Gà-màl

A camel is ‫ .גמל‬This letter also has an interesting feature. When there’s an apostrophe on the letter ‫ ,גימל‬it’s pronounced like G in George. Old Hebrew doesn’t have this sound. In modern Hebrew we use an apostrophe on the letter ‫ גימל‬to make this sound. This is useful for spelling words borrowed from other languages.
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17

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

Dalet (Dà-lét)

‫דלת‬

‫ד‬
‫דוב‬

Letters as Numbers
Hebrew letters can also be used as numbers, with ‫ א‬being 1, ‫ ב‬being 2, and ‫ג‬ being 3. For example, '‫ יום ג‬means Tuesday, which is the third day of the week. '‫ יום ו‬is Friday. (Saturday however is special, it’s ‫).יום שבת‬ The following table shows the value of each letter. Numbers are written by stringing letters so that their values add up to the number. ‫טח ז ו הד ג ב א‬ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ‫צ פ ע ס נ מ ל כ י‬ 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 ‫ת ש ר ק‬ 100 200 300 400 For example, ‫ ל"ג‬is 33.

The letter ‫ דלת‬sounds like the letter D. Let’s see an example. Since we’re using animals as examples, the word for a bear is... A bear Okay, moving on He (Héy) ‫הא‬ Dov

‫ה‬

The letter ‫ הא‬sounds like H in English. At the end of a word, the letter ‫ הא‬can be silent. Like ‫ הא ,אלף‬can also function as a vowel, often at the end of a word. For example, the second ‫ הא‬in the word ‫ ,אהבה‬which means love, serves as a vowel, and we don’t hear any H sound. Noa, what animal begins with ‫?הא‬ A hippo Hi-po-po-tàm ‫היפופוטם‬

‫ היפופוטם‬as you probably guessed means a hippo. The letter ‫ הא‬has an important use. It’s used for the definite article. It has a name in Hebrew. It’s called ‫ .הא הידיעה‬It is not a separate word like ‘the’. Instead it’s attached as a prefix to the word that follows. Let’s look at a few examples: .‫האריה, הברווז, הגמל, והדוב‬ Hà-àr-yé, hà-bàr-vàz, hà-gà-màl, vé-hà-dov This means the lion, the duck, the camel, and the bear, respectively. Next, we come to the sixth letter which is... Vav (Vàv) ‫וו‬

Terminal Letters

‫ו‬
‫שלומך‬ Shlom-hà ‫שלום‬ Shà-lom ‫מצוין‬ Mé-tsoo-yàn ‫ינשוף‬ Yàn-shoof ‫עץ‬ Éts

‫אותיות סופיות‬ O-ti-yot so-fi-yot
There are five Hebrew letters that are written differently when they are at the end of a word. These are: ‫כף סופית‬ Kàf so-fit ‫מם סופית‬ Mém so-fit ‫נון סופית‬ Noon so-fit ‫פא סופית‬ Pé so-fit ‫צדי סופית‬ Tsà-di so-fit

‫ וו‬is often used as a vowel. It can sound like O. For example, in the word ‫ .אוהבת‬It can also sound like the double O in book. For example, in the word ‫ גמור‬that we heard in our previous lesson when Rina said ‫.בסדר גמור‬ ‫ וו‬can also be used as a consonant and sound like the letter V. Noa, let’s hear an example of a word like that. How do you say a virus? A virus Vi-roos ‫וירוס‬

‫ וירוס‬means a virus. This word is obviously borrowed from another language. Hebrew is an ancient language that has been revived around the end of the nineteenth century. Therefore, words like virus, atom, and telephone were brought into Hebrew from other languages. The letter ‫ וו‬has another function. Because Hebrew does not have a letter that sounds like W, it uses two consecutive ‫ וו‬to make this sound. For example the word ‫ וולבי‬which means a wallaby. This usage is typically for words that were borrowed from another language.

‫ך‬ ‫ם‬ ‫ן‬ ‫ף‬ ‫ץ‬

‫ עץ‬means a tree or wood.

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18

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

Okay Noa, what’s next? Zayin (Zà-yin) The letter ‫ זין‬sounds like Z. Now, how about an example? A fly Z-voov ‫זבוב‬ Brown bear ‫החמור והחזיר‬ Hà-hà-mor vé-hà-hà-zir The donkey and the pig ‫דג טונה‬ .‫זין, בית, וו, בית. זבוב‬ Zà-yin, Bét, vàv, bét. z-voov. Okay, let’s go on. Het (Hét) ‫חית‬ Dàg too-nà Tuna fish ‫ינשוף עצים‬ Yàn-shoof éts-im Long-eared owl (literally trees owl) ‫זין‬

‫ז‬

Examples
‫דוב חום‬ Dov hoom

A fly is ‫ .זבוב‬So ‫ זין‬sounds like Z, except when there’s an apostrophe on the letter ‫ .זין‬In that case, it is pronounced like the letter J in French. For example in the French name '‫.ז'ורז‬ Noa, let’s spell the word ‫.זבוב‬

‫ח‬
‫חית‬

Now that’s a hard one to pronounce. Let’s hear that again... Het Hét

‫ חית‬really doesn’t have an equivalent sound in English. It sounds similar to J in Spanish like in the name José. ‫ חית‬is pronounced from the throat, like the sound made when you’re clearing your throat. Okay Noa, let’s do a couple of examples with ‫.חית‬ A pig That means a pig – ‫ .חזיר‬And... A donkey Hà-mor ‫חמור‬ Hà-zir ‫חזיר‬

Stressed and Loose
There are six letters in Hebrew that can be “stressed”, but in modern Hebrew you can only hear the difference with three of these letters: .‫בית, כף, פא‬ When a word begins with one of these letters, then the letter is always stressed. When a word ends with one of these letters, then the letter is never stressed.

A donkey is ‫ .חמור‬This word, ‫ ,חמור‬is also used for name calling, meaning an idiot, and it’s a rather mild expletive. Let’s go on... Tet (Tét) The letter ‫ טית‬sounds like the letter T. For example A tuna Too-nà ‫טונה‬ ‫טית‬

‫ט‬

Hebrew Dictionary Lookup
When you look up Hebrew words in the dictionary, remember to strip any prefixes. Examples: Instead of ‫( הספר‬the book) ‫( ואני‬and me) ‫( שבאה‬that came) ‫( לעיר‬to the city) Look up ‫( ספר‬book) ‫( אני‬me) ‫( באה‬came) ‫( עיר‬city)

‫ טונה‬mean tuna as in tuna fish. Noa, let’s spell ‫.טונה‬ .‫טית, וו, נון, הא. טונה‬ Tét, vàv, noon, héy. Too-nà Okay Noa, what’s the next letter? Yud (Yood) ‫יוד‬

‫י‬

When used as a consonant, ‫ יוד‬sounds like the letter Y. When used as a vowel, ‫ יוד‬sounds like I in pig. Let’s see an example of ‫ יוד‬as a consonant.

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19

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

An owl

Yàn-shoof

‫ינשוף‬

An owl is ‫ .ינשוף‬Another word that begins with ‫ יוד‬is ‫ ילד‬which means a child. Next we come to another interesting letter... Kaf (Kàf) ‫כף‬

Morphology

‫כ‬

Like we saw before with the letter ‫ ,בית‬the letter ‫ כף‬has also two possible sounds. A stressed sound similar to K—for example, ‫,כלב‬ a dog—and a loose sound similar to the Hebrew letter ‫ .חית‬In our previous lesson we saw an example of the soft sounding ‫ כף‬in the word ‫.יכולה‬ Another interesting feature of the letter ‫ כף‬is that it is written differently at the end of a word. It’s called ‫.כף סופית‬ Let’s see a couple of examples of animals that begin with ‫ .כף‬The first, I just mentioned: A dog ‫ – כלב‬that’s a dog. And another example A shark That’s a shark – ‫.כריש‬ Ready for the next letter? Lamed (Là-méd) ‫למד‬ Kà-rish ‫כריש‬ Ké-lév ‫כלב‬

A characteristic of the Hebrew language is that most words are derived from a root of 3-4 consonants. Multiple words with similar meaning are derived from the same root. In our example here, we have the word ‫ מאובן‬which is derived from the root ‫.אבן‬ Let’s see some other words derived from ‫.אבן‬ Stone Fossil Tartar (as in teeth) ‫אבן‬ é-vén ‫מאובן‬ mé-oo-bàn ‫אבנית‬ àv-nit

‫ל‬
‫לטאה‬

Examples
‫כלב נחמד‬ Ké-lév néh-màd Nice dog ‫כריש לבן‬ Kà-rish là-vàn White shark ‫לטאה זריזה‬ Lé-tà-à zri-zà Literally nimble lizard (Lacerta laevis – a lizard native to Israel) ‫מאובנים‬ Mé-oo-bà-nim Fossils ‫קן נשרים‬ Kén né-shà-rim Eagles nest

‫ למד‬sounds like the letter L. Any animal beginning with ‫?למד‬ A lizard A lizard is ‫ .לטאה‬Noa, let’s spell ‫.לטאה‬ .‫למד, טית, אלף, הא. לטאה‬ Là-méd, Tét, à-léf, héy. Lé-tà-à. Let’s continue. Mem (Mém) ‫מם‬ Lé-tà-à

‫מ‬
‫מאובן‬

‫ מם‬sounds like the letter M. And how do you say fossil in Hebrew? A fossil Mé-oo-bàn

A fossil is ‫ .מאובן‬The word is derived from ‫ ,אבן‬a word that means rock, because ‫ מאובן‬describes something that turned into a rock. The letter ‫ מם‬turns into ‫ מם סופית‬when it’s at the end of a word. The next letter is... Nun (Noon) ‫נון‬

‫נ‬

‫ נון‬sounds like the letter N. Like ‫ כף סופית‬and ‫ נון ,מם סופית‬at the end of a word is ‫.נון סופית‬ And an animal starting with ‫ נון‬is

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20

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

A vulture A vulture or eagle – ‫.נשר‬ Next... Sameh (Sà-méh)

Né-shér

‫נשר‬

‫סמך‬

‫ס‬
‫סוס‬

This letter sounds like S. Let’s hear a couple of examples. How do you say a horse? A horse And a crab? A crab Noa, can you spell ‫ סרטן‬for us? .‫סמך, ריש, טית, נון סופית. סרטן‬ Sà-méh, réish, tét, noon so-fit. Sàr-tàn. Let’s go on. Ayin (À-yin), a goat, a spider ‫עין, עז, עכביש‬ À-yin, éz, à-kà-vish Goat’s milk ‫פיל אפריקני‬ Pil àf-ri-kà-ni African elephant ‫צפרדע ירוקה‬ Tsfar-dé-à yé-roo-kà Green frog ‫קיפוד מצוי‬ Ki-pod mà-tsooy Common hedgehog ‫מראשן לצפרדע‬ Mi-ro-shàn lé-tsfàr-dé-à From tadpole to frog ‫שועל אדום‬ Shoo-àl à-dom Red fox ‫תנין היאור‬ Tà-nin hà-yé-or Nile crocodile Sàr-tàn ‫סרטן‬ Soos

‫ע‬

Examples
‫חלב של עז‬ Hà-làv shél éz

A goat is ‫ עז‬and a spider is ‫ עין .עכביש‬sounds like the letter ‫ אלף‬but comes from even deeper in the throat. It’s the sound that the doctor wants you to make when she examines your throat with a tongue depressor. Nevertheless, in modern Hebrew you will rarely hear the difference between ‫ אלף‬and ‫.עין‬ Pe (Péy), an elephant ‫פא, פיל‬

‫פ‬
Péy, pil

An elephant is ‫ .פיל‬The letter ‫ פא‬has two possible sounds. The stressed sound is similar to P like we just heard in the word ‫.פיל‬ The loose sound is similar to F like we heard in the word ‫.ינשוף‬ Here ‫ פא‬is at the end of the word and, yes, you guessed it, it’s ‫פא‬ ‫.סופית‬ Tsadi (Tsà-di), a bird, a frog ‫צדי, ציפור, צפרדע‬ Tsà-di, tsi-por, tsfàr-dé-à

‫צ‬

A bird is ‫ ציפור‬and a frog is ‫ .צפרדע‬There’s no equivalent in English for the sound of ‫ .צדי‬This sound is approximated by the letter combination TS like in the word pets. ‫ צדי סופית‬is the fifth and last of the ‫ ,אותיות סופיות‬or terminal letters—those letters that are written differently when they are the last letter of a word. ‫ צדי‬has another feature. If written with an apostrophe, it makes the sound '‫ .צ‬For example, ‫ צ'כיה‬and ‫ צ'ילה‬which means the Czech Republic and Chile, respectively. Noa, what’s the next letter?

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21

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

Kuf (Koof)

‫קוף‬

‫ק‬

Left and Right Right Left
‫ ימין‬and ‫ שמאל‬are the nouns. Below are their adjective forms Right (m.) ‫ימני‬ Yé-mà-ni ‫ימנית‬ Yé-mà-nit ‫שמאלי‬ Smà-li ‫שמאלית‬ Smà-lit

The letter ‫ קוף‬sounds like Q or K. Now, this is a bit strange because we already encountered a letter that sounds like that. It was the letter ‫ כף‬in its stressed form. So, you’re probably wondering why there are two letters that sound pretty much the same. But this is no different than English with Q, K, and even C, all sounding the same. How about an animal that starts with ‫ ,קוף‬Noa? A hedgehog A hedgehog. ‫ .קיפוד‬That’s a prickly animal. Okay Noa, we’re almost done, the twentieth letter is... Resh (Réish) ‫ריש‬ Ki-pod ‫קיפוד‬

‫ימין‬ Yà-min ‫שמאל‬ Smol

‫ר‬

Right (f.) Left (m.) Left (f.)

‫ ריש‬has no identical sound in English. This one is really hard to pronounce for English speakers, just like it’s really hard for Hebrew speakers to pronounce the English R correctly. ‫ ריש‬is approximated by the letter R, although it sounds quite a bit different. ‫ ריש‬is rolled in the back of the throat like when you gargle salt water. Let’s see an example. Noa, how do you say tadpole in Hebrew? A tadpole A tadpole. ‫.ראשן‬ Let’s move on. Shin (Shin) ‫שין‬ Ro-shàn ‫ראשן‬

‫ ימנית‬and ‫ שמאלית‬are the feminine form of the adjective. We use the feminine form for ‫ שי"ן ימנית‬and ‫ שי"ן שמאלית‬because the letter ‫ ,שי"ן‬itself being a noun, is feminine.

‫ש‬
Hebrew Dictionary Lookup
When you look up verbs in a Hebrew dictionary you should use the past tense of the verb in the first-person singular. Unlike some other languages, you should not lookup the infinitive. For example, instead of looking for ‫( ,לשחק‬to play) look for ‫( שיחק‬played). Instead of ‫( ,לשיר‬to sing) look for ‫שר‬ (sang).

‫ שין‬has two possible sounds. The first and more common sound is like the letter combination SH, like in shush. The second sounds like S in snake. You can hear this form in the word ‫.ישראל‬ The first form of ‫ ,שין‬pronounced , is called ‫ .שין ימנית‬The second form of ‫ ,שין‬pronounced , is called ‫ ימנית .שין שמאלית‬and ‫,שמאלית‬ are the adjectives right and left, respectively. So, we just saw an example of ‫ שין שמאלית‬in the word ‫ .ישראל‬Let’s listen to an example of ‫ .שין ימנית‬How do we say a fox? A fox A fox is ‫.שועל‬ We come to the last letter of the Hebrew alphabet. Tav (Tàf) ‫תו‬ Shoo-àl ‫שועל‬

‫ת‬

This letter sounds like the letter T. It also sounds a lot like the Hebrew letter ‫ .טית‬This makes spelling hard. How can you tell whether to use ‫ טית‬or ‫ ?תו‬One clue is that ‫ טית‬is more often used in words borrowed from other languages, like the name of the Israeli town of ‫ טבריה‬which was named after the roman emperor Tiberius.

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22

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

So, Noa, to finish off, how about an animal that begins in ‫?תו‬ An alligator That’s right, ‫ ,תנין‬which means an alligator. And with ‫ תו‬we come to the end of this lesson that was entirely dedicated to the Hebrew alphabet. You can find more information in the lesson guide that goes together with this podcast. You can download the lesson guide from our web site at http://hebrewpodcasts.com. That’s it for today. In our next lesson Noa will be back. We’ll learn some new vocabulary related to school and we’ll touch on the subject of counting and ordinal numbers. Until then !‫שלום ולהתראות‬ Tà-nin ‫תנין‬

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23

Hebrew Podcasts
Lesson 2 – Alphabet
Beginner Level

Lesson 2 – Exercise
Match each animal with its Hebrew name. Draw a line between the word and the picture.

‫ זבוב‬z-voov ‫ אריה‬ar-yé ‫ כלב‬ké-lév ‫ תנין‬tà-nin ‫ קיפוד‬ki-pod ‫ גמל‬gà-màl ‫ ברוז‬bar-vàz ‫ סוס‬soos ‫ צפרדע‬tsfàr-dé-à ‫ פיל‬pil

The answers to this exercise are available online at http://www.hebrewpodcasts.com/pdf/Answers_002.pdf © Both the podcast and this accompanying lesson guide are copyrighted material. All rights reserved. You may not distribute these materials without permission from the copyright owner.
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