I am teaching myself Hebrew and was looking for a few good books to help with this goal. Well, the reviews for this book were positive so, I ordered it.
Boy, I am so glad that I did too! First of all the book is very compact so, it is easy to take with you. It can fit into a handbag or briefcase with ease. There is a handy chart in the back for letter recognition. It even shows it with block print. This is the style that is considered handwritten. Nobody can write the letters that are in books. This was the only style that I saw and I tried to copy the book texts. It makes all the letters with curls, and wavy lines extremely difficult to write. This book changes that around!
In lesson 1, I was introduced to 3 letters. That is it, three! But what they did with those three letters are amazing. They introduced a vowel and it had the same sound. So, you are only learning one vowel every couple of lessons. It allows you to get comfortable with a couple of letters when combined with a vowel. I was reading and performing the exercises all in the first lesson! Unbelievable!
I like the exercises because they are self checking. Meaning, the words when pronounced correctly sound like real English words. This is encouraging to hear yourself reading. They do this purely for the exercises the words mean very different things in Hebrew. However, if you really doubt yourself, the answers are in the back. Of course, they are in Hebrew so, if you had problems with the exercises, this will not make it any easier for you. You will learn better, if you do not have the security net of the answers in the back of the book.
In the following lessons, they keep building upon the skills that you have learned in previous lessons. It is not isolating the lessons like most texts tend to do and they even review the lessons with you. They only introduce a few letters at a time which makes it really a lot more fun.
I was finally able to see what to do with Alef. It turns out that it really is a silent letter unless there is a vowel under it. It is what the books have been showing all this time. Who knew?
I wanted to teach my son Hebrew using this book but it would need modifications made to it. This is for adults who are self-disciplined enough to put their efforts into it. I think it is a great way to introduce vowels and this I will be doing with my son. However, this book is not to substitute for teaching or learning letter recognition. This does make a nice review for it. They do compare similar letters and how to tell them apart. This is extremely helpful for little ones who are having a hard time with letter recognition.
I know that there is a cassette companion for this book. However, I have just the book and I think that it is enough for me. Enjoy! You will not be sorry!