Lesson 4 - Learning Arabana together

Let’s learn some Arabana words and phrases that we can use when we are learning Arabana language together.

Practice reading and saying the new vocabulary a few times so that you can remember it.

Next, read the example sentences and listen to the recordings. The new vocabulary in each sentence is in bolded text. There is a pronunciation guide underneath each sentence to help you to remember how to say the words.

Download and complete the memory exercise here once you have finished the lesson to check how many new words you can remember.

New words to learn

Arabana
English
antha
I, me
uka
she, he, it
ngurku
good, well
wangka
language, word

Question words

wara
who
minha
what

Action words (Verbs)

yanhirnda
talking, speaking
ngawirnda
listening
yukarnda
going, walking
walkirnda
sick, sore

PRACTICE SENTENCES FOR LANGUAGE LEARNERS

In your learning space, you might like to tell others to speak Arabana and not English. Maltya means ‘don’t’ or ‘not’. Walyparla comes from the English ‘white fella’, so walyparla wangka is literally ‘white fella’s language’.

Maltya walyparla wangka yanhirnda; wangka Arabana yanhirnda.
Don't speak English; speak Arabana.

As a language learner, you may like to ask someone else what the name of something is in Arabana. Nhiki means ‘this’.

Minha nhiki pidla?
What is this called?

If you don’t hear what someone said, you can say this to get them to repeat it.

Minha?
What?/Pardon?

If you want to ask to go to the bathroom, you can use this sentence. Antha means ‘I’ or ‘my’, punga-punga means 'toilet/small shelter' and -ruku means ‘to/towards’.

Antha punga-punga-ruku yukarnda?
Can I go to the toilet?

If you see a new person in your class, you could ask someone else if they know her name. Asking someone else for her name can be more polite than asking her directly. Pidla means ‘name’.

Wara pidla uka?
What is her name?

Here is a possible response to the question ‘what is her name?’ Uka means ‘she/he/it’. Ukakunha ‘hers/his/its’ could also be used here instead of uka. Pidla means name and –nha is added to ‘Marie’ to show that Marie is a name.

Uka pidla Marie-nha!
Her name is Marie

This may be said by someone who has had a long day of learning. Tyawi- means ‘bored’ or ‘fed up’, and -thirnda means ‘becoming/getting’.

Tyawi-tyawi-thirnda
I'm getting bored

This can also be said by someone who has had a long day of learning. Anthunha means ‘my’ or ‘mine’ and kardapu means head.

Anthunha kardapu walkirnda
My head hurts

Note: You can also just say kardapu walkirnda instead of including anthunha ‘my’, as the person you are talking to will probably know that you are referring to your own head.


PRACTICE SENTENCES FOR LANGUAGE TEACHERS

This can be said to language learners to make sure that they listen to what you are saying.

Ngurku ngawirnda
Listen carefully

This can be said while pointing to or tapping a child’s ear to make sure that they are paying attention. Nhiki means ‘this’.

Nhiki-ru ngawirnda
Listen with this

This can be said to get learners to quieten down and listen in. Katu means ‘quiet’, -thirnda means ‘become’.

Katu-thirnda
Quiet down

This can be said to children so that they settle down and pay attention. Tapi means ‘stop’ -thirnda means ‘become’.

Tapi-tapi-thirnda
Stop that

If learners are leaving for the day and you want to tell them to wait, you might like to say this. Mitha- means ‘wait’.

Mitha-mitharnda
Wait for a moment

Remember to download and complete the memory exercise here once you have finished the lesson to check how many new words you can remember.