Everything You Need To Learn Malay
Malay is the official language of Malaysia and Brunei, and it’s one of four official languages in Singapore. It’s also spoken in some parts of Thailand and Indonesia. There are around 200 million native speakers of Malay in Southeast Asia.
Malay is part of the Malayo-Polynesian branch of the Austronesian language family, and is closely-related to Indonesian, so much so that the standardized versions of the languages are considered to be mutually intelligible. This means that by learning one, you’ll essentially be able to speak/understand the other.
Though learning materials aren’t as plentiful as they are for Malay’s sister language, Indonesian, there are still a few good places to start. There’s more than enough here to give you a solid foundation in the language.
Malay Language Learning Books
Learning Malay is easy and affordable with a Malay course/study book. These books are loaded with lessons that teach you the basics of the language, as well as things like Malay grammar, sentence structure, and common vocabulary. You’ll be able to build your own sentences in a grammatically correct way by the end of the course.
Next on your list should be a concise Malay dictionary. It will come in very handy throughout your language journey, as you’ll want to look up all the new Malay words you come across, and see how they’re used in different contexts.
Consider getting yourself a Malay phrasebook if you want to skip past the lessons in grammar and jump into speaking the language. This will give you commonly-used phrases and Malay words that you can use when meeting new people, shopping, etc.
Malay Children’s Books
You can give your language skills a real boost by reading some children’s books in Malay. This is a great place for beginners to start, as Malay kids’ books are written using simple language and vocabulary, making them accessible to people new to the language.
Not only will you improve your Malay reading comprehension, your overall knowledge of the language will improve as well.
Malay Digital Courses
A Malay e-course could be a good idea for those who would rather learn through Malay audio and/or video lessons. You can access these from any smart device, anywhere in the world, so you’ll have no problem practicing.
These types of courses put more emphasis on speaking and understanding the language as it’s spoken by natives, and not so much on the theoretical aspects of how the language works, like most course books do. This makes them perfect for people who are considering taking a trip to Malaysia sometime in the future.
Udemy’s Malay course is quite comprehensive, offering you an impressive 11 hours of video lessons, usually for the price of a pizza. Plus you get lifetime access to the course and future updates, and you’ll be a part of the active community of learners also taking the course.