Let’s face it: learning a foreign language is usually never an easy endeavour. The processes can be very demanding, from picking up all alphabets in the language to learning how to tie them together to make a word and then using the words accordingly to make an intelligible sentence. All these are a challenge which, no matter how smart you are, will be something you may have to overcome
In the same vein, learning an Indo-European language such as Hindi is no walk in the park, but with the right resources in place and an optimal level of determination, you can conquer the challenges and get acquainted with virtually everything the language entails in a short time.
So, if you intend learning Hindi in Nigeria, you will find in this article things to expect while learning the Hindi language, as well as how you can learn to speak Hindi in Nigeria by yourself.
Click here to find the cost of taking Hindi Language classes in Nigeria.
Important Things to Note Before Learning Hindi
To begin with, Hindi is in a lot of ways disparate to the English we speak and write every day. It's like delving into a completely new world. But you won’t get lost once you are equipped with the basics. The advantage of learning a completely different language is that whatever you learn is distinct and you won’t end up and mixing things.
Also, one of the perks of Hindi is that it is written from left to right, unlike Arabic and select Asian languages written from right to left. Given this, you should be pretty much ready to fire up the calligraphic aspect of Hindi soon.
On another note, you can read out loud Hindi words within a short time of learning. This is made possible by the fact that words in Hindi words are pronounced exactly as they are written. Each letter of the Hindi alphabet has its own independent and distinct sound.
By and large, this makes it quite easy to pronounce words. Speaking of pronunciation, the more you understand each Hindi alphabet, the better you will be able to speak and be understood. Although the Hindi phonetic might be a bit odd at the inception of your learning, you will get accustomed to it with time.
Tip: You can Watch Hindi movies to get the pronunciations currently. Likewise, you can practise pronunciation with anyone you know who speaks Hindi and can correct you whenever you don’t get it right
Writing Hindi in English (Transliteration)
Not everyone is familiar with the Hindi alphabets, collectively known as Devanagari, so don’t get yourself too worked up trying to put Hindi alphabets into writing. There are millions of Hindi-speakers whose calligraphic skill in the language is nothing short of crummy, yet they can speak the language just perfectly by conversing with it every day of their lives.
Considering this, if much of your Hindi lessons are going to be targeted at oratory, then you are not required to master the Devanagari. Of course, you can learn Hindi by just hearing the words and knowing their meanings.
A private tutor who provides one-on-one lessons can help you achieve this, and, thankfully, you can find personal Hindi teachers on SuperProf Nigeria.
You can easily write Hindi in English through transliteration. However, you must have mastered the pronunciation of words and must be able to make intelligible statements to transliterate them into English.
The Similarities Between Hindi and Other Languages
As you would expect, Hindi is in no way tied to any of our local languages in Nigeria, be it Hausa, Yoruba, or Igbo. No Tribe in Nigeria has made a trade or had contact with Hindi-speaking people in history, so it’s no surprise that none of our local languages is influenced by or influences the Hindi language.
That said, languages such as Nepal and Urdu share a lot of similarities with Hindi, so do a lot of Asian languages. But — since Asian languages are barely learned in Nigeria, let alone spoken — we will be deliberating European languages that are loosely connected to Hindi. That is, European languages that are fairly common with Nigerians, which are French, Spanish, and, of course, our Lingua Franca, English.
Spanish is one of the European languages that share some similarities with Hindi, with many words translating to the same meaning. For instance:
• The phrase What Happened translates to Que Huba in Spanish and Kya Hua in Hindi
• The word Mez in Hindi is similar to Mesa in Spanish
• The word You is pronounced as Tu in both Spanish and Hindi
• Orange translates to Naranji in Hindi and Naranja in Spanish.
• A shirt is known as Kameez in Hindi and as Camisa in Spanish
• Ten is pronounced as Das in Hindi and as Dez in Spanish.
Although the above similarities may seem meagre, they serve as hints to help you make connections and remember words, particularly if you’ve got subtle knowledge of Spanish.
French, like Spanish, is a Latin-derived language and is also fairly similar to Hindi. One striking similarity is that, unlike English, verbs are placed after a direct object, and not before it. You will understand this grammar rule when you begin learning Hindi in Nigeria, so it’s nothing to be confused about.
Another thing Hindi and French have in common is the placement of gender indicators before every noun, thus requiring one to modify the verbs and adjectives in accordance. Does all this seem complicated? Not to worry, you’ll grasp the entire grammar rules once you begin learning Hindi in Nigeria.
When it comes to English, Hindi shares no similarities whatsoever in terms of grammar rules at all. However, the only known established connection between both languages is the borrowing of words. A lot of English words are used in everyday Hindi conversations due to British colonization and adaptation of the words by natives.
On the other hand, English itself has a lot of borrowed words from Hindi, some of which are bracelet, pyjamas, guru, thug, shampoo, and a lot more others.
Where to Learn to Speak Hindi in Nigeria
Albeit the best way to learn Hindi in Nigeria is through the help of a private Hindi teacher which can be found on Superprof. There are still some good routes that you can take to learn the language yourself, provided you dedicate enough time and are determined to learn it at all cost.
Games & Apps
Ever thought the resources you need to learn Hindi is right in your pocket? Various apps are on the Google Play and Apple stores that you can download to start learning the Hindi language on the go. One of the popular ones is Duolingo which offers basics Hindi lessons that you can harness to become familiar with Hindi words and gradually learn to speak with them.
Alternatively, you can get Hindi games on the apps store of your mobile platform. For instance, Bhai the Gangster is an action-packed game where the NPCs speak Hindi and texts such as quotation and signboards are written in Hindi.
Google's video platform is a resourceful place for you to learn Hindi online, starting from beginner to intermediate and then advanced level. YouTube has a lot of contents on learning to speak Hindi, how to identify Hindi alphabets, and so on. By watching these contents, you can envisage yourself being in a classroom and immerse yourself in learning from people who are very proficient with the Hindi Language.
You will find videos like that by simply performing a keyword search on YouTube. Keywords such as “Hindi for beginners,” “Advanced Hindi Lessons,” or “Hindi for English speakers” should equip you with the relevant contents. Some contents are broken into several videos, so you should digest them one after the other, depending on time and learning pace.
Radio & Podcasts
Whilst watching videos will help most people Learn quickly, listening to audio content is what cuts it for some people. As an advantage, you can listen while tending to other tasks at home or the office. You will not be able to concentrate fully, that's for sure, but it's great to be productive while learning the language that you love.
One of the better Podcasts out there for Hindi learners is HindiPod101. It has various Hindi audio lessons, as well as video lessons handled by fascinating hosts.
Likewise, you can head over to your app store to download iHeartRadio. The app has local radio stations across various countries. Tune in to stations such as Radio Mirchi, Filmy Mirchi, and Hindi Retro to learn new words.
Travel to India.
When it’s all said and done, one cannot help but mention how being in the country where Hindi is predominantly spoken can help you learn the language quickly and immerse yourself in their world. Just as we have Indians in Nigeria who are now speaking our local languages fluently, you too can find yourself speaking Hindi fluently if you’re privileged to be in their country.
You can visit the High Commission of India to see the opportunities available in this regard.
Finally, other than learning from your conversations, you can also search for and attend classes organized over there for foreigners who want to learn the local languages.
Find out more on How to Learn Hindi on Your Own in Nigeria.