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Family Stories (Parivaar ki Kahaaniya) Posted by on Feb 20, 2017

Most people enjoy listening to stories (कहानियाँ/kahaaniyaan, fem. plural noun. Singular noun: कहानी/kahaani) about their family (परिवार/parivaar, masc. noun), and I am certainly one of those people. I especially enjoy listening to my parents’ stories of when they were younger and, when my grandmother was still with us, I loved hearing her stories of growing…

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Verb Tenses II: Present Progressive … and More on the Simple Present Posted by on Feb 18, 2017

Last week पिछले हफ्ते (pichhlay haftay), we looked at construction of the simple present tense सामान्य वर्त्तमान काल (saamaanya vartamaan kaal) for regular verbs क्रिया (kriya). However, instead of moving to the simple past tense, I thought it would be useful to learn the present continuous/progressive तात्कालिक वर्त्तमान काल  (taatkalik vartamaan) tense. As its name denotes, the तात्कालिक वर्त्तमान काल…

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Verb Tenses I: Simple Present Posted by on Feb 9, 2017

In Hindi, tenses are known as काल (kaal).  Past tense is known as भूतकाल (bhoot kaal). Present tense is known as वर्त्तमान काल (vartamaan kaal).  Future tense is called भविष्यत् काल (bhavishya kaal). Like English, there are several types of each tense. Let us begin with the simple present tense or सामान्य वर्त्तमान काल (saamaanya vartamaan kaal). The infinitive form…

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I am Human, Just Like You (Main Insaan Hun, Tumhaari Tarah) Posted by on Jan 29, 2017

Following the events of this week, I thought it would be relevant to share a song that celebrates unity and peace. This song, entitled “जानेवालो ज़रा, मुड़के देखो मुझे/Jaanevalo Zara Mudke Dekho Mujhe” (Passersby, Just Turn and Look at Me) is from the 1964 movie, दोस्ती/Dosti (fem. noun, friendship). The film centers on the close…

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वर्णन करना : To Describe Posted by on Jan 27, 2017

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Varnan karna. When I teach writing to children लेखन (lekhan), I find that they struggle most with recalling and using descriptive words वर्णात्मक शब्द (varnaatmuk shubd). They have no trouble coming up with complicated पेचीदा (pay-cheeda) stories कहानियाँ (ka-haaniyaan). However, it is a constant challenge to offer detailed विस्तृत (vistrut) written sketches of characters पात्र (paatra) and accounts of scenes दृश्य (drishya). After all, a…

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