Learning Hebrew on the Streets, With Walls as Assigned Reading
By JODI RUDOREN
July 21, 2012
Guy Sharett’s Hebrew lessons are taught in a walking classroom, on the streets and alleys of Florentin, his neighborhood here, where new vocabulary words are mixed into an ever-changing curriculum.
“Get out from the TV, start to live,” Mr. Sharett translated one scrawled Hebrew slogan at the start of class one recent evening, trailed by a dozen students thirsty to understand the life of the Tel Aviv street as much as the revived ancient language spoken on it.
He pulled out a little white board to break down the graffiti before him. The first part of the slogan, “Tzay mayhatelevizia,” used the imperative — get out — while “tatchil lichayot,” start to live, was in the future tense. “It sounds to us too pompous and too archaic,” he explained, “so we just use the future.”
Mr. Sharett, 40, has a day job at a television company, but has been giving private Hebrew lessons for several years. Besides the graffiti course, he offers one-offs touring the city’s spice market (“Wake up and smell the Zatar”); shopping and cooking with a famous chef (“While chopping, we learn the names of the vegetables”); and watching the local version of “American Idol,” with frequent use of the pause button to translate slang and jokes (“This is Israeliness 101,” he said).
Read the full article at http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/22/world/middleeast/learning-hebrew-on-the-streets-with-walls-as-assigned-reading.html?_r=1