Swahili resources to use alongside with the Duolingo Swahili course
Karibu na hamjambo, Duolingo! Here is a resource compilation for Swahili, to keep those who are waiting for the Duolingo course happy and ready for Swahili!
Why should I learn Swahili?!
Swahili is a language spoken in East Africa, with around 5-15 million native speakers, but, is used as a lingua franca throughout East Africa, and including 2nd and 3rd language speakers, that number can be up to 150 million speakers or more in total! If you've seen the Lion King by Disney, you probably already know some Swahili.
Rafiki - Friend
Simba - Lion
Nala - Gift
Pumba(a) - Stupid
Hakuna Matata - No worries
Jenga - (v.) Build
Map of where Swahili is spoken:
- Swahili used to be written in the Arabic script
- Swahili is an agglutinative language
- It is spoken in 8 countries, though only 3 of them have Swahili as the official language(Tanzania, Kenya, D.R.C)
http://www.bu.edu/200word/ - Site with 200 words pronounced by native speakers in 8 different languages; Xhosa, Zulu, Amharic, Wolof, Hausa, Swahili, Igbo, and Akan Twi.
Youtube videos and channels:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_9QfBSbw8g - The Swahili Language, by LangFocus. Very interesting and informative guide to the Swahili language, and basic grammar and a couple words are taught in this video
https://www.youtube.com/user/FCLangMedia/playlists - There is a Swahili playlist on this channel with 50+ videos, mainly focused on grammar.
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPDzF0B97OtG-KPdCiw1IGSMlV4F4r9Iy - Playlist for Swahili stories in Swahili with subtitles.
Songs in Swahili
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-hUhYzjhusE - Kenyan National Anthem Acapella; lyrics in the description box of the video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7NtkwfAAuY - Tanzanian National Anthem; lyrics in the description box of the video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRRyAEddO6E - The Jambo Bwana song, a catchy song to help you memorize some basic introductions and phrases in Swahili. (lyrics included in the video)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bCh58peMl98=youtu.be=2m47s - Miriam Makeba - Malaika, classic song from 1974; lyrics in both Swahili and English are included in the video
Books and courses:
https://www.academia.edu/5595221/Colloquial_Swahili - Colloquial Swahili book
https://www2.ku.edu/~kiswahili/ - University of Kansas course on Swahili, very good site.
https://www.scribd.com/doc/23281558/Teach-Yourself-Swahili - Teach yourself Swahili, basic course
https://www.scribd.com/doc/38298467/Introduction-to-Swahili - Intro to Swahili, another basic Swahili course
https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Swahili - VERY incomplete wikibooks guide, very basic info on Swahili.
http://learn101.org/swahili.php - Swahili course with audio (audio is loud, turn down volume)
http://www.pbs.org/wonders/Episodes/Epi2/2_cult1a.htm - PBS Swahili basic words and phrases
http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED455681.pdf Another more extensive Swahili course, PDF file
http://www.glcom.com/hassan/lessons/useful_swahili_words.html Basic swahili vocab
http://www.africa.uga.edu/Kiswahili/doe/ - Swahili pronunciation and grammar
http://www.languagetransfer.org/complete-swahili - Language transfer has 21 lessons on soundcloud teaching you Swahili
Major language learning sites with Swahili courses
https://www.duolingo.com/course/sw/en/Learn-Swahili-Online - Duolingo Swahili course(duh!))
https://www.italki.com/teachers - 3 Swahili teachers on there, Skype needed to talk with teachers from Kenya and Tanzania
http://www.memrise.com/courses/english/swahili/ - Swahili memrise courses, memrise helps with memorizing vocabulary
http://www.pimsleur.com/learn-swahili?term=Swahili - PAID, 1ST LESSON FREE Pimsleur has a 30 minute course if you ask for a free lesson, you don't need to put a real e-mail if you don't want to , they don't require you to check your e-mail for a free lesson
http://www.jamiiforums.com/ - Swahili forum, pretty active
http://www.verbix.com/languages/swahili.shtml - Swahili verb conjugation, enter the verb without the ku- infinitive
http://www.openlanguages.net/swahili - Old website with basic Swahili vocab, some links are broken/blank
http://www.masai-mara.com/mmsw.htm - Basic Swahili phrasebook
http://www.worldlanguage.com/Products/Swahili/Dictionary/Page1.htm - PAID; Website to buy Swahili books
News(Habari), Podcasts, and Radio
http://radiouganda.net/ - Ugandan radio stations
http://tunein.com/radio/Radio-One-897-s6419/ - Tanzanian radio in Swahili
http://www.kenyamoja.com/radio/ - Swahili and English Kenyan radio stations, you can tell which language it is in by seeing the words on the logos
http://www.bbc.com/swahili - BBC in Swahili
http://www.ippmedia.com/ - Tanzania based news website
http://www.voaswahili.com/programindex.html - Swahili podcast
http://sw.rfi.fr/ - Swahili news site
http://www.dw.com/sw/idhaa-ya-kiswahili/s-11588 - News in Swahili
I hope this gets you guys excited for Swahili, the Swahili contributors have been working super hard! Enjoy the resources! If you see any errors (factual or spelling), broken links or links that don't go to the correct website, or want to add anything else, feel free to comment down below! Kwa heri na Asante sana! (Good bye and thank you!)
Some more Lion King names:
Mufasa (Simba's father) means "king" in Swhili
Sarabi (Simba's mother) means "mirage" in Swahili
Two of the Hyena Trio have Swahili names; Shenzi (uncouth) and Banzai (lurk)
This is not mentioned in the movie, but Scar's original name was Taka (meaning something along the line of "trash" or "garbage" in Swahili). He requested to be called Scar after he gained the scar on his eye. In Lion King II, his son Kovu was named after him (yes, Scar was a father proir to his fate), kovu being Swahili for "scar".
Full list of names in the Lion King franchise (including Lion Guard, Lion King 1/2, and books): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_characters_in_The_Lion_King
I'm so exicted that Swahili is nearly out! I have been waiting so long for it to be released (I was dismayed when it was delayed from August). My family does a lot of work in Kenya and I would love to be able to speak and understand more than the few words all visitors learn.
Jenga means build?
That's great! Also, the songs are so amazing! It is such a beautiful language, I must learn it. I think I have passed the point of no return. I want to learn/am learning too many languages to be considered normal. Anyway, thanks for the resources, they will be used.
That's a huge list of useful resources :)
Most of the languages Duolingo teaches have lists of resources like this on their page on the Duolingo Wiki. Swahili has no resources at all yet, though: http://duolingo.wikia.com/wiki/Swahili If you were able to find the time to add your resources there, you'd provide a really useful resource for future Swahili learners.
Can't wait for Swahili! I have many friends who speak it and can't wait to speak it with them.<h1>DemVibes</h1>
I created a Youtube channel to learn Swahili with songs : https://m.youtube.com/channel/UC1ggxdKkUjxrL7YyHxLsikA
I translated the east african anthem anthem and other songs in english !
Swahili has lots of Arabic loan-words, because they used to trade with them! Here's a list of them.
You have a good head-start in Swahili! :D
This is such a detailed and helpful list you have put up here my friend. I do hope that at some point my YouTube channel has enough quality videos to make to this list someday. As a native Swahili speaker from Tanzania , I like sharing this wonderful African language on my channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClQnOffT0NAXjXI9Y2hUkCw/videos
The 'Teach Yourself' series of language books also includes some for Swahili learners:
'Glossika' also offers Swahili: