Igniting the love for Urdu in America

Published: August 20, 2011

New technology can help support old traditions PHOTO: REUTERS

This is how my story begins. I was blessed with my first born, a beautiful daughter, in June 2008. On this special day, my Bhaijan, a close relative who is like a father to me, gave me an important piece of advice:

“Apnay bachoon ko apni madr-e-zaban sekhana – agar nahi sekhai tu future may tum chahaye 10,000 dollar bhi kharach karo gay tu kuch hasil nahi hoga, aur wo apni zaban asi nahi sekh sakaingay jaysay tum bachpan may sekhao gay”.

(If you don’t teach your children their mother tongue, then in the future, even if you spend 10,000 dollars, you won’t achieve anything, and your children will never learn Urdu the way they would have learnt it if you would have taught them when they were younger.)

My Bhaijan has been my guardian, my coach, and my mentor after the death of my beloved father. Hence, his advice means the world to me, and I have always kept it close to my heart. Bhaijan believes that culture is strongly associated with language, and we ought to do as much as we can to teach our young ones our language.

Fast forward to June 2011. My daughter is now 3-years-old, and I have also been blessed with a son.

So what did I do during these 3 years?

I embarked on a journey and I started my own small company, here in Fremont, CA, with the help of my best friend Arjumand Azeemi. We call it “Qurtaba”, as we want to rekindle the passion of “Innovation, Invention and Deep Research” amongst young Muslims, and specifically amongst children of Pakistani descent.

The motivation behind starting this company was an observation I made when my daughter was  12-months-old. I noticed her fluently humming the ABC song with gusto. After a few months, she was even able to recognize the English alphabets. The reason behind this, I later understood, was due to the influence of applications on the iPhone, iPad, Android, and other mobile devices. In addition to this, I realized that YouTube streaming directly on to our house, is really impacting the life of toddlers and children. My daughter, I realized with dismay, could not hum Udru nursery rhymes or recognize the Urdu alphabet.

Bearing this enlightening insight in mind, my business partner and I worked hard to launch some Urdu Apps for children. The first two apps we came up with for the iPhone and iPad are related to the “Alif Bay Pay”, the Urdu alphabet.

We spent countless hours crafting the details and also performing usability testing among our children. My friend and partner, Arjumand Azeemi, also has a 3-year-old son. Thus, it became natural for us to collect feedback from our children. This, henceforth, became a personal project for us and we were immensely driven to achieve success.

This success came from the eventual launching of Urdu apps on the iPhone and iPad. Even though this step is a relatively small one, it is a vital beginning to ignite the love for Urdu in youngsters living abroad. I gauged my achievement, with tears in my eyes, as in the months to come; I began to notice my children humming Urdu nursery rhymes. My children are now at the stage where they are learning to write the Urdu alphabet on a whiteboard at home.

However, I must be clear on one fact. Our efforts to launch Urdu apps are in no way a ploy to demote the English language or any native language of the country where an expatriate Pakistani is situated. Living in a country other than Pakistan, it is understood that the language spoken there becomes the default language, and a child learns it regardless of whether he/she is taught it or not. However if you observe Chinese, Indian, Italian and Russian families alike have kept their respective cultures alive in the countries they are living in, by teaching their children their mother-tongue. It is for this very reason that Chinese or Russians living abroad are very much in sync with their respective cultures and in touch with their roots.

We, thus, believe that language defines one’s culture and one’s culture defines one’s identity. I think we are now ready to help expatriates by building Urdu apps for mobile phones to keep the love for Urdu alive amongst young children. Our efforts will, at least, bring the upcoming generation a little closer to their culture whilst they are living abroad. Although they will be known as “American”, “British”, “Aussies” and so on, they will still have a part of the that is Pakistani.

Learn more about the apps:

 Alif Bay Pay helps young children to become familiar with the Urdu alphabet. This app has an alphabet jingle at the end.

Urdu Nursery Rhymes is great fun and an excellent educational tool used to familiarize young children with the Urdu language at an early age. The app has six beautifully sung nursery rhymes for children.

Mudassir.Azeemi

Mudassir Azeemi

Mudassir Azeemi is the co-founder of Qurtaba LLC which focuses on iOS App Development, specializing in childrens apps. His Twitter handle is @mmudassir

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Baloch

    But pakistan Is a multi ethnic country. Childern from Every Ethnic Group has a different mother tongue, Urdu isn’t their mother tongue. So, We should Strive to teach our childern Our mother tongue. languages here are at a great risk, But urdu isn’t as it is taught in schools. In pakistan other languages are ignored in schools .So we should Concentrate on Language that is Ours For thousands Of years Not that has been implemented on us for the last 60 years.Recommend

  • Fazal

    Thats the real Pakistani soul inside almost every person having good mind. Keep it up. Recommend

  • Adnan

    Please bring it to Android world too as now there are more android devices being used than ios devicesRecommend

  • Arzoo

    I definitely agree with you and therefore I have one strong rule at my home that you have to speak in urdu at home. They (my 7.5 yr old & my 3.5 yr old) speak English which they have to in schools, therefore at home even if they talk to each other they have to speak in Urdu. Now after three years I have noticed a strange behaviour, whenever my elder son sees a Pakistani, by default he speaks in Urdu!! though his sentense structure is not all that good but he makes an effort to speak in Urdu with every Pakistani. I am also making an effort to make him read and write Urdu but definitely it is taking a lot of time.
    I was looking for such apps, and just installed it now.. :) Thanks a lot!Recommend

  • tanoli

    @ Baloch
    We speaks hindko in hazara KP region but like most pakistani we learn to read write urdu
    because it is our national language and also needed for communitation between all the
    comunities in pakistan.Recommend

  • Cautious

    In case you forgot — your not in Pakistan anymore and America is the “home country” of your children — they should not be humming tunes in Urdu. Wake up!Recommend

  • Maryam Q

    This sounds like an excellent service and a brilliant idea! Thank you so much for helping the millions of expatriates around the world with these forward thinking apps. Recommend

  • http://www.bongeek.com Mudassir Azeemi

    @Baloch: Dear Friend, yes you are right, however Pakistan is our Mother-Land! So basically mother tongue becomes from that point of view is Urdu. I am also not a native Urdu speaker, I speak three different language, Memoni, Urdu and English. However I chose Urdu, because I like the idea of uniting ourselves on one platform which is common among all of us, specially among Pakistanis. There are many different version of Chinese spoken by Chinese, however they have one common language and all of them know about it.

    As I said it in the article is just the beginning, the Team Qurtaba has the “A” team, which will deliver the magic in coming days and beyond!Recommend

  • http://www.bongeek.com Mudassir Azeemi

    @Adnan: yes, already in our pipeline. However we attacked the iPhone and iPad first, because Android market is now getting mature, before Android was too fragmented. InshAllah it will be on Android too.Recommend

  • http://www.bongeek.com Mudassir Azeemi

    @Fazal:

    Thank you, in coming days if you keep an eye on http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu, you will see more surprises.Recommend

  • http://www.bongeek.com Mudassir Azeemi

    @Arzoo:

    Glad to hear your story, and would love to hear it on our App Review section! Seriously these personal stories encourage our behavior, our team and put us in a positive zone where we churn up more and more awesome things and creative juices flows among our team. Thank you.

    Make sure to be a fan of our apps at

    Facebook

    & Twitter

    Or subscribe via a small form on our http://www.qurtaba.net/ and add “Newsletter” in the comment section, we will keep you posted, and couple of surprises will be coming very soon from us! Specifically for Parents who wanna expand there kids Urdu (if they are already speaking , even toti-photi / broken).Recommend

  • Vivek Rohra

    Nice article. I’m impressed. There is an error in the ending sentence. It should be ‘Although they will be known as “American”, “British”, “Aussies” and…Recommend

  • zaitoon

    I see that these apps have price set , I think these apps should be sold for free so that more children can take advantage of them … Probably advertising based model would be a better optionRecommend

  • http://www.bongeek.com Mudassir Azeemi

    @Cautious:
    Yes you are right, and I would like to have my kids and all the parents from those region where my roots are should speak “Multi-Language” and yes I would like them to hum tunes of “Five Little Monkey”, “Twinkle Twinkle” , “Wheel on the Bus” along with “Abu Lay Motor Car”, “Bulbul Ka Bacha”. Being bilingual has many advantages, from many different perspective, please read the excerpt:

    “Bilingualism is usually a rewarding experience filled with social and academic gains.
    However, for some, the process can be a time of anxiety. Many parents often sacrifice the
    gift of a second or third language in order to spare their children the stress of the learning
    experience. It would be more advisable for families to gain a clear understanding of the
    factors they have an influence over and those factors which are in nature’s hands.”
    Source: http://www.bilingualfamiliesconnect.com/Ten%20Key%20Factors%20Influencing%20Successful%20Multilingualism_Tokuhama-Espinosa.pdf

    I would love them to serve the country where they born and raised, and also they should respect there “home land” because for Expatriate Pakistanis specifically and Expatriate Urdu Speakers in general’s Kids mother-land is America, UK, Italy, Germany, Norway etc etc. So yes they should speak and trust there country-men.

    However they should not forget there roots, like American still remember that they are from “Ireland” however they are first American, and then anything else. Canadian Govt. help the immigrants to keep there culture intact. So go and see how the Indians are doing there best to maintain there Culture in the chilly-cold-snowy zone of the world. Why Pakistani should not do it? Why we shy out? Our culture is in our blood, why Parents who are raising there first generation should not ignite the love of the culture where they from? It will create a tolerant people. This process will raise the “tolerant and creative” kids, who understand and see the difference of culture and won’t be “ignorant”.

    That’s why Cautious I think these things are necessary to have these kind of apps. Qurtaba took this step, and we are content with the result. And yes I am also hearing that couple of my friend who never had “smartphones” now considering “iPhone and iPad” just because of those apps. Because they had the same problem as I foresees it, and at Qurtaba we just started our phenomenal journey and inshAllah we will keep surprising you guys.

    Thank you for your comments, that’s really encouraging us. :) Recommend

  • A R

    Great initiative! Urdu is the national language of Pakistan and the only language that all communities in Pakistan can use to speak to one another. If we forsake the language, we forsake our identity! Great job!Recommend

  • http://www.bongeek.com Mudassir Azeemi

    @Maryam Q:
    Thank you MaryamRecommend

  • Muhammad Kamran

    Great work Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @zaitoon: We thought about it, however then we are focusing on “Designing for Human Experience” and my team did an intensive usability research on Kids app and we noticed that Kids tend to tap on the “shining and moving” thing. This distract the kids attention from the main purpose of the apps.

    My simple question is now …. if we already spent $50 to $800 on a high-profile devices, then why we are shying away to spend just 99cents on an idea that will ignite the love of Urdu and start the a very new dimension in kids life?Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Vivek Rohra:
    Thanks Vivek! I think the editor will take care of the syntax error you notified. Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @A R:
    Thank you A R for motivating us, keep the positive energy coming!Recommend

  • Usman Chaudhri

    I applaud you for taking on this venture. You very rightly said, one way to sustain Culture is to keep the spirit of the language alive. Every Culture has one way of the other a good way to contribute towards making this the world a better place to live-in. If we manage to sustain our Cultures, we can together make this world a heaven. And one way of sustaining Culture is to keep the language alive. Good Work, Mudassir.Recommend

  • http://www.noor-ul-ainhanif.blogspot.com Noo-ul-Ain Hanif

    Good job :)Recommend

  • S.Maahrukkh

    Very well written! I guess its a great initiative taken by you and a fantastic idea. Its our duty to save our mother tongue. If we ignore our mother tongue that means we ignore two essential aspects of our personality–the emotional aspect of our personality and the cultural aspect of our personality. Great job! Thumbs up and keep it up! :))Recommend

  • Hassan

    @Baloch:
    Yes Urdu Might not be ur mothertounge
    but its still OUR National Language
    its Pakistan’s National Language
    Hence Every Pakistani Should Learn Urdu and Importance should be given to Urdu Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @S.Maahrukkh:
    Thank you so very much, and yes I love the perspective of yours that “Two Aspect of Personality” , it is sometime difficult for “ESLers” (English as a Second Language speaker) to convey emotions in Engilsh to there younglings how they feel about certain situation. However as I said in my article, if they know the language of ours, then it would be easy for them to understand thus it will help us (the first generation’s parents abroad) to keep the “generation gap” at minimum.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Usman Chaudhri:
    Thank you Usman, yes that’s why I need to see “Desi Town” beside “Chinatown” here in USA :) Where we are showing the strength of Pakistan along with other South Asian Countries in that area by increasing the import of “Desi Products” right from our South Asian Countries and specifically from Pakistan, beside this and more specifically I would like to see Pakistani Mango in abundance in the stores of “Desi Town” :) Recommend

  • Hunain Khan Azeemi

    All i gotta say is that you have done a great job and i am really proud of you for promoting our mother tongue in this country , and i will defiantly get this app for my kids
    God bless you :) Recommend

  • http://Twitter.com/Farrukhsiddiqui Farrukh Siddiqui

    Dear Mudassir, First of all i want to congratulate you on this extra ordinary effort. Great Job bro, You have added a milestone in the World of Tech and that’s not an ordinary thing. I usually see children influenced by different things and talking intelligently about them but when we ask them common questions about our own culture they became blank and that’s because we are not teaching them our own values. Your venture is a step towards recognition of our own roots. Urdu is our National language and Pakistan is Mashallah flourished with so many other languages. The Nursery rhymes we used to learn and hum when we were kids, one rhyme tickling in my mind at the moment “Kali kali bakriyaa oon hain kia ji han ji han teen thelya aik master ji ki aik mere bhai ki aik chote bachay ki jo rahta hai wahaan” :-) Urdu version of Baba black sheep. Best of luck! Keep the good work up.

    Regards
    Farrukh.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Muhammad Kamran: Thank you Kamran!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Noo-ul-Ain Hanif:

    Thank you Noo-ul-Ain! Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Hassan:
    Well said Hassan! We are coming up with so many things in future, and we are excited about it :)Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Farrukh Siddiqui: Thank you Farrukh for motivating us, and yes I remember that poem too :) Also that “Incy Wincy Spider Climb Up The Water Spout” is already hummed by my daughter, both version :) English & Urdu….Urdu version is “Akri Bakri Mkri Chat Pay Charh Gaee…”Recommend

  • GaziMumbai

    I really appreciate your efforts .. But I would like to add one thing here .. India & Pakistan were ruled by Britishers so both Nations developed complex of English .. So it is much easier for Chinese or Russians to live in sync with their respective cultures, as you have mentioned above.
    Behrehaal aap kaam bohat acha kar rahe hain .. Keep the good work doing ..Congratulations.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Hunain Khan Azeemi: Shukran! and thank you! Recommend

  • IMRAN

    It is a good step to. basicly it is ahsan on our generation that we can teach our childern with the use of new tech gadgets.
    GOD Bless You. Recommend

  • Tariq

    great efforts, I appreciate your love and attachments toward your country and language, and yes every pakistani must learn to speak, read and write our national language, after all it is our identity, these applications would help our children learning urdu, not only living far away from pakistan but those who live in pakistan as well, keep up your efforts, your love towards country and national language may become the reason of success to you.Recommend

  • Munheem

    Your work is worth being appreciated and i hope ul continue this and will help the children to learn Urdu who are living abroad being a Pakistani national. This will not only help in promoting urdu language but this will also help the children to know about their country as well and would made them patriotic about their country Pakistan and this would enlighten the love for their country as well.
    It is an awesome idea and it is a duty of every Pakistani to keep their mother tongue alive irrespective of what ethnic origin they belong. I myself is a memon but really appreciate ur work.
    All in all URDU is not just a language spoken in Pakistan BUT its the identity of being a PAKISTANI!Recommend

  • http://go2thelight.tumblr.com Kevin Pringle

    Inspiring to hear! I really am beginning to see the impact of applications on children and the access it gives them to learn and retain knowledge….Keep it up Azeemis!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @GaziMumbai:

    You are right, however Chinese also were ruled by Brits! However thank you for your appreciation!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @IMRAN: Dude you said it heavily! Thanks a lot.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Tariq: Tariq, thank you for your appreciation. Your words are encouraging and motivating!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Munheem:
    “All in all URDU is not just a language spoken in Pakistan BUT its the identity of being a PAKISTANI!’ very well said!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Kevin Pringle:
    You are right, it is all about “retaining” the knowledge and heritage!Recommend

  • Atif

    just read your article…its great! I see many parents struggling to teach urdu to their kids in US…some just don’t even bother anymore…so I hope this app is a success and more paki parents use it for teaching urdu to their kids. Btw, I don’t have iPhone otherwise I wouldve tested out your app too..

    @Baloch: Urdu is much older than 60 years. While I admire your spirit for balochi , Urdu is spoken by millions of people in Pakistan & India, so you really can’t compare teaching Urdu to Balochi. Besides, you can always teach your kids Balochi, Urdu, and English (all three)…this will only increase their chances of success in life!Recommend

  • http://www.cssexpression.com Azhar Raza

    Its nice to see Mudo again done a great job as Pakistani for our national language.
    MUDO! keep going the spirit We Love Urdu We Love Pakistan….. Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Atif:
    Thank you Atif, yes as a parents we do understand the struggle and thus the initiative we have :)Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Azhar Raza:
    We are blessed with a rich culture so why not keep it intact wherever we go? Thanks again for your encouraging words!Recommend

  • Pakistani in Umreeca

    Mudassir sahib, I have a four and a half year old son. Me and my wife speak Urdu at home, our son understands all of it, yet he speaks in English. Can you tell us what we are doing wrong or what should we do to make him switch to Urdu, thanks.Recommend

  • Yumna

    I think it’s a brilliant idea. =)Recommend

  • Arzoo

    @Pakistani in Umreeca:
    AOA
    Though you asked a question from Mudassar Azeemi, and I am sure he will reply you too. I have shared my experience earlier as response to this well-written article.
    One thing that you can do is to ask your child to speak Urdu with you, as a rule, and siblings as well should talk in Urdu when at home. This was a suggestion given to me from my cousin who is living in America for past 20 years, and both her children speak very fluent Urdu.
    I am following her advice and Alhumdulillah, as I mentioned earlier, both of my kids speak Urdu when at home and when they meet any Pakistani, unlike other children who are usually quite! cause they cannot speak urdu and feel left out in community gatherings.
    I hope it will help you.Recommend

  • Shahrukh kazmi

    I Salute you Brother! Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Yumna: Thanks Yumna,yes it is :)Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Shahrukh kazmi: Salute to the Team Qurtaba for there awesome effort, from the Killer Picasso (our awesome Designer) to the our Genius Software Architects! Recommend

  • Arjumand

    @Pakistani in Umreeca

    I would first recommend that you need to encourage him to only speak in Urdu at home. I know it might be difficult at this age, since he is now accustomed to speaking in English. But slowly and steadily and only with compassion you need to mold him that his default language with parents becomes urdu. Slowly stop responding to him when he addresses you in English. Make him understand that English is not your mother tongue, therefore you do not know how to completely speak and understand. When he needs a toy or something that he really wants, it’s a chance for you guys to have him ask you in Urdu and only then he will get it. Thora naram garam ho ker chalna paray ga ap logoon ko, laikin itna mushkil nahi hai.

    I used to live in a household full of English speaking kids, and my son was catching English pretty well. But me as a father became a nagger or a reminder. Whenever my son would speak English with me, I would just say one word “Urdu”, and over time he got the point, and now only speaks Urdu with me. He has now realized that papa does not know how to speak English that well. Often he would suggest “papa ap English seekh lo” :)
    Well, now since I have him going in Urdu, he is actually pretty well in switching modes. He knows exactly what it means when he says in English and sometimes would tell me that what a word would mean in English :)

    -Arjumand Azeemi.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Pakistani in Umreeca:
    Actually Arjumand Azeemi’s kido is around that age, and he had that kind of experience, he will be replying you soon. My kido at the moment don’t have too much English influence, because she is not yet going for pre-school, and usually surrounded by Urdu speaking kidos. Although sometime she get influence and start talking to us in English, so my simple response is “Mujhay english nahi ati, aap urdu may batao tu mujhay pata chalay” and this magic bullet do work almost every time.

    However watch out for Arjumand’s reply, he had some experience and I am seeing his son is very fluent in English and Urud, according to the context and environment, mashAllah.Recommend

  • http://twitter.com/randolphcabral Randolph Cabral

    It is refreshing to see a company focusing its mobile engineering efforts go beyond games. We owe it to the next generation, our successors, to educate and enlighten. The world can use more visionaries like Muddasir and Arjumand. I wish Qurtaba much success with all of their positive efforts.Recommend

  • Zayed

    @Mudassir
    Loving the kids’ apps man. So much potential for education products with iPhone and iPad. I see stuff like this being used in school. My kids love their iPod TouchRecommend

  • Farrukh

    Thanks for the effort brother. This is indeed awesome news. We need such tools to educate the next generation about Urdu. Just a question for my info. I am not big on iPhone/Ipad (although I am Macbook person) what other apps tools you are developing or have for non iPhone/Ipad people? Recommend

  • Mateen Jaffer

    Great peace of work. A very helpful and fantastic job done. It will help out every one and will also play an important role in promoting the our national language through out the world. Keep it up :) Best WishesRecommend

  • Junaid

    Excellent article! I am almost certain that this application would truely serve as an inspiration for those who are striving to retain the richness of thier culture and heritage. Again, great work and I wish you guys all the best for the future.Recommend

  • waqqar

    This is really a marvelous job done by you guys,it will be a great tool for the generation to come understanding urdu language .you deserve congratulations.I have no doubt in my mind language plays a great role in understanding a culture and being associate with it.For young Pakistani it will a great way to learn their language.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Randolph Cabral: Thanks for your well wishes!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Zayed:
    and kids app are little difficult to craft too, because performing usability testing on it is really challenging!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Farrukh: there will be many surprises in coming months! Also there will be awesome stuff coming along for Parents! :)Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Mateen Jaffer: Thank you for encouraging us, and motivating us!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Junaid: true that!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @waqqar: it is just our small effort and inshAllah in coming months there will be many more stuff we are coming up with however I would not spill the secret :) Thank you for your awesome encouragement!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Arjumand: Thanks dude for the wonderful reply. And I would add that his son is also getting some bits from his “Chacho” in Punjabi! So I am suspecting that he will be a true “Multi-lingual” kid in our neighborhood :)Recommend

  • Amir Memon

    ma sha Allah, excellent app. My almost-2-year-old niece picked up this app and immediately started learning. The alif bay pay app is very nicely put together with high quality images and audio. Recommend

  • Arjumand

    Thanks everyone for the wonderful response and support. We at Qurtaba really appreciate this. Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Amir Memon: Thank you Amir, and it is awesome to know about your niece, I am thinking that I will put together the videos of kids using Alif Bay Pay on our YouTube Channel!Recommend

  • tanoli

    @ Mudasser
    Now the really urdu speaking peoples even dont wannt to teach there children a language
    how about that we are not urdu dan background but we like to learn urdu can u tell me
    why is it and when i see those real peoples speaking funny language half english and half
    urdu like LAMAS half camel half donkey.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @tanoli:
    Asalamwalikum

    I think you have two question:

    1) where /how to learn Urdu if it is not your primary language?
    2) Why people do not bother about Urdu I they are from the urdu background?

    Let me answer your question #2 first, it is simple, whoever care about there heritage, culture and identity, they will for sure stay connected with it in a complex environment using different methodology and techniques, while integrated himself in the given environment without dis-associating from the normal life pattern. If they don’t want it there loss. They speak half-baked and do not wanna improve, it is there choice. We cannot do much.

    Now to your first question, there are many online crowd-sourcong websites for adults tp learn Urdu as a Secondary Language, and try your local library, or get in touch with Pakistan American Culture Center in your neighborhood. Recommend

  • tanoli

    @ Mudassir
    it was not that hard to understand my questian if so then i can repeat my questian just
    in plain desi english that is part of funny soap operas in america and in london.Recommend

  • salman

    @Baloch:
    Agree, but urdu is taught in schools only in Pakiatan not in foreign countries. And these apps are focused for foreign countries. :)

    Also learning regional language is important but please understand the imoortance of national language, it links to your country’s history and culture.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @tanoli:
    I still dont get it then what you really looking for? Recommend

  • Baberm

    Great work guys!!
    Does your product help children learn urdu through Phonics (sounding out letters)? Perhaps you should market your product to Fisher Price or Mattel India/ Pakistan division? Recommend

  • Seeme Laleka

    It is good to know that you and your friend are working to promote Urdu specially amongst young children .Few people understand the importance of providing right kind of opportunities and environment for the growing children … I am delighted to note the fact that you not only realized the missing ingredient in your children’s life (ability to recite Urdu Nursery rhymes ) but practically came up with a wonderful solution .
    Congrats !!!

    Best wishes Recommend

  • Farrukh

    This is great effort . I did not check this app but this is nice article which explains about app.I hope that this app will help children to learn Urdu.Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Baberm:
    Yes it is already cooked, we are just tweaking the bit to get it out from the Qurtaba’s magical cave ;) For marketing purpose good idea though. Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Seeme Laleka:
    Thank you Seeme for showing your awesome interest and delight regarding our effort. My kids are a big fan of yours poems too on YouTube!Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Farrukh:
    Thank you! You must see it! It will blow your mind, the graphics, the functionality all get together in such a cohesive way that it looks like a very nice experience, specifically from user perspective.Recommend

  • Afra

    Assalam u alaikum. Fist of all I would like to commend the effort that you have put into making this software. It comes through the realization that our children need to be connected to their mother tongue no matter where they live and and with that comes close relation with the culture. Sadly, here in the western world we see desi parents taking pride in their children speaking english fluently and adapting western culture and let the other people know with pride that their kid cant utter a single word in urdu let alone recognise/read it! Its a very sad picture and my heart breaks to see that. Just like one of the user commented in the post that its a rule in her house to speak urdu, so is the case at mine. But the influence from outside the house is so strong that nor my children and neither I can put upto it. Children have peer pressure to speak in English and act cool and not ‘pendo’ when it comes to conversing in urdu/mother tongue…while the adult parents think of it as degrading when their child talks in urdu/mother tongue. So how long could a handful fight back unless there’s collective effort firstly in changing the way the parents think and then encouraging their children to speak in Urdu/mother tongue.
    Anyway, I just wanted you to know that your effort is very much appreciated from parents like me and would definitely have my children benefit from this.
    Also, I have a 3 year experience at kindergarten level in teaching kids the basic urdu and reinforcing through exercises . If I can be of any help in helping you improve/ or comeup with ideas for software letme know. I haven’t yet checked out your software…probably you might have all that but I do have ideas that I am willing to share.
    May Allah reward you for your effort.
    Jazakallahu khairaRecommend

  • Nancy Jr.

    Great idea and beautiful job Mudassir! Not only does it sound like these are needed and highly desired programs, but you out did yourself with the graphics and application. I know my son would be all about these games! Congratulations, I’m sure it was a long road getting here.Recommend

  • Sohaib Rana Azeemi

    I gotta say, you’ve helped plant the seeds that will one day grow into a tree. For kids to gain the basics of Urdu to a point where by when they grow up, they will gradually gain mastery over the language, thus being able to understand the culture of Pakistan from where their family originates. Well done and keep up the great work. One small step for Qurtaba, one giant leap for Pakistan. ^_^Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Afra: Thanks for the comments, I think we already replied to your email as well that sounds similar as your comments are. Take CareRecommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Nancy Jr.: Thanks Nancy, actually we have a team of talented team behind Qurtaba’s Vision, I would like to quote Steve Jobs as my partner, my friend Arjumand’s love that quote and I think it is true as well:

    My model for business is the Beatles.
    They were four guys who kept each
    others negative tendencies in check.
    They balanced each other and the total
    was greater than the sum parts. And
    that’s how I see business. Great
    things in business are never done by
    one person, they are done by a team of
    people.

    Steve Jobs / Apple Computer

    Recommend

  • http://www.qurtaba.net/urdu Mudassir Azeemi

    @Sohaib Rana Azeemi:
    :) “One small step for Qurtaba…” you reminded me the Neil Armstrong! Thank you for your encouragement!Recommend

  • My Name is Khan

    @ Muddasir – while Urdu is not my native tongue, I do find your effort very valiant. Regardless of what our native tongues are, we should make sure that our children learn them or they will lose their sense of identity. That doesn’t mean they should not speak the language of the place they live fluently.

    @ Arzoo – totally right. Children must know so they can communicate easily with cousins, grandparents, etc. Recommend