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Everything You Need To Learn Chichewa

Everything You Need To Learn Chichewa

Chichewa (also known as Chewa) is one of the two official languages of Malawi, and is spoken by over 12 million people as a first language. In addition to Malawi, Chichewa speakers can be found in Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Chichewa is a Bantu language, which means that it’s part of the Niger-Congo family and is considered to be a tonal language. This means that tones are an important aspect of speaking correctly, so learning the correct way to pronounce the words you’re using is crucial.

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Unfortunately, as with most African languages, there aren’t a lot of comprehensive materials for people looking to learn Chichewa. This means that those who live outside of one of the countries in which it’s spoken might struggle to learn it.

We’ve scraped together the few resources that we could find, and presented them here for you to peruse. At the very least, you should be able to gain a solid foundation in Chichewa using some of them.

Chichewa Language Learning Books

As Chichewa learning materials are scarce, you won’t find any reputable interactive or audio Chichewa courses, so the next best thing would be a written course. With one of these, you’ll be able to learn not only basic Chichewa grammar, but everyday Chichewa vocabulary and phrases.

With an English-Chichewa dictionary, you’ll be able to look up the meanings of the words you encounter, and see examples of how they’re used. Having immediate access to a good Chichewa dictionary is a necessity for all learners of the language.

Chichewa Children’s Books

Reading Chichewa children’s books is a great way for beginners to see how the language is used in context, in an enjoyable way. Children’s literature is written in simple, straightforward language that follows predictable patterns, making it easy to pick up on.

Many of these children’s books are bilingual English-Chichewa, meaning you get two versions of the book, and can thus quickly and easily see what words mean without the need to keep referring back to a dictionary.