ARPHA Proceedings 3: 101-129, doi: 10.3897/ap.2.e0101
Evaluation of Arabic Language Teaching Textbooks Used in Russia in the Light of the CEFR Criteria
expand article infoReima S. Al-Jarf, Nailya G. Mingazova
Open Access
This study analyzed the textbooks titled “Arabic for Non-native Speaking Children”, Level I by Zakirov, Mingazova, and Mukhametzyanov (2011), and “Arabic for Non-Native Speaking Children”, Level II by Mingazova, Zakirov, and Mukhametzyanov (2013) which are used to teach Arabic as a foreign language (AFL) to elementary school children in Tatarstan. The textbooks were then evaluated in the light of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) criteria. Results showed that the textbooks do not meet the CEFR language teaching and learning criteria, as they focus on the reading and writing skills, not oral skills and communication. They focus on the Arabic alphabet letters and basic Arabic grammatical structures and categories. The words taught are selected based on whether they contain the alphabet letter under study, not on the basis of belonging to a certain semantic category. In addition, the textbooks have adopted a grammar-translation approach, not a communicative, functional approach. The study recommends restructuring the textbook aims, skills and subskills taught, language elements selected, syllabus design adopted, and language teaching approach followed so that focus is on learning Arabic for communication. The whole Arabic lesson should be conducted in Arabic (L2). The students should practice oral skills before they move on to reading and writing sentences and paragraphs. The form and meaning of the words and grammatical patterns should be taught together using real objects, drawings, gestures and dramatization. The textbooks should adopt a functional situational syllabus design and follow a communicative language teaching approach. Further details are given below.
Arabic as a foreign language, AFL, content analysis, textbook evaluation, evaluation criteria, CEFR