Teaching the Arabic language and Moroccan culture is the focus of youth work, a scientific conference in Italy

Abdel Latif El-Baz – Heba Press

The challenges of teaching the Arabic language and youth to the children of Moroccans residing in Italy were at the center of a meeting organized by the Islamic Confederation in partnership with the Italian Islamic Cultural Association Rho in Milan, in the north of the country, on the theme “The reality and prospects of the Arabic language in Italy.

This meeting aims to highlight the importance of youth and the teaching of the Arabic language as a tool allowing children belonging to the second generation of Moroccan immigrants to maintain their links with their country of origin and preserve their cultural identity.

The organizers explained in an exclusive statement to Heba Press that this meeting, in which researchers, civil society actors, local elected officials and professors participated, made it possible to highlight several issues, including the diversity of approaches. of tracing in the field of Arabic language teaching. , monitoring often attributed to non-governmental organizations or religious institutions such as mosques and Islamic cultural institutes.

The speakers added that associations and centers for teaching the Arabic language constitute an essential factor in preserving the cultural identity of Moroccans residing abroad, as well as in preserving their religion and their attachment to their motherland.

The issue of Arabic language teaching requires “an academic scientific study” and the concerted efforts of all stakeholders concerned in order to find appropriate solutions.

They believed that the future of teaching the Arabic language in Italy lies in its introduction into public school curricula as a foreign language.

For his part, Saleh Wehbe, vice president of the Italian Islamic Cultural Association Rho, spoke about his experience in this area, emphasizing the need to make special efforts to improve the status of teachers abroad.

Wehbe highlighted the efforts made by associations in the field of teaching the Arabic language, highlighting the difficulties that hamper the work of these associations, including the very short time allocated to courses, the absence of unified educational programs and the lack of number of classrooms in most mosques.

He added that the lack of skills trained in teaching the Arabic language, the absence of a precise strategy and the multiplicity of actors are all factors which constitute an obstacle to any initiative aimed at promoting the teaching of the Arabic language. . the Arabic language in diaspora countries, calling for legalization of this area by putting an end to “chaos and improvisation”.

For their part, the participants agreed that the teaching of the Arabic language in Italy has multiple reasons that differ depending on the cultural level of the parents, emphasizing that the construction of the Muslim personality, the strengthening of the bond with the homeland and the protection and strengthening identity in a diverse society remains at the top of these reasons.

After highlighting the role played by mosques in the teaching of the Arabic language in the countries of the diaspora, the speakers raised a set of problems known to some of the institutions that supervise the teaching of the Arabic language in Italy, because some of them seek profit. and lack of necessary human and educational resources.
In addition to the president of the organizing confederation, Mustafa Hajraoui, representatives of the Islamic centers of Italy, as well as academics and actors from Moroccan civil society, participated in this meeting. They stressed the need to raise the level of the teacher, who remains. the central element of this system, by strengthening its educational capacities and adopting programs compatible with the diverse cultural context in which members of the community live.
The President of the Islamic Confederation of Italy, Mustafa Hajrawi, highlighted at the start of this meeting the position of the Arabic language among the languages ​​of the world and its role in protecting the identity of the nation and in its protection against assimilation to other languages. civilizations.

He indicated that the biggest challenge facing the Arabic language at present is globalization, “meaning the strong dominance of the language over other languages ​​in various fields”, highlighting the current role of education in the progress of the Arabic language. , particularly in Italy.

The activities of this study day were divided into two sessions during which the participants discussed two main themes: “The reality of teaching the Arabic language in Italy: characterizing and diagnosing young people” and the perspectives of teaching the Arabic language in Italy.

By organizing this meeting, the Islamic Confederation of Italy wishes to highlight the most important achievements made by Arabic language teachers, as well as the impact of the Arabic school on the psychology of Muslim youth in the Italian context.

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