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Learn Kannada Through English Online

After Sanskrit and Tamil, the third oldest Indian language is Kannada. Also known as Kanarese or Kannana, Kannada is a member of the Dravidian language family and is the official language of the state of Karnataka which is located in southern India. Kannada is also spoken in the Indian states of Kerala, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Goa, and Tamil Nadu. Kannada has about 40 million speakers world-wide and about 10 million of those people speak Kannada as a second language. Like most Indian languages, Kannada has its own unique alphabet and script. Kannada script was highly influenced from the Kadamba and Calukya scripts from over 2000 years ago. If you are planning to visit or live in Karnataka, it would be very beneficial to learn Kannada. If you are interested in learning how to read, write, and speak Kannada, here are the top websites online to do so for free.

  1. Omniglot – Kannada
    Omniglot is a great site for learning about new languages like Kannada. The first link provides a list of useful English to Kannada phrases. The Kannada translations in that first link are written in Kannada script and how the word or phrase is pronounced. By clicking on certain scripted phrases in this first link, you can also hear how that phrase is pronounced through an audio file. The second Omniglot link provides information about Kannada’s writing system and alphabet. The page shows how vowels and consonants are written in this distinctive script.

  2. Languages Home – Learn Kannada
    This link provides a simple and efficient list of common words and phrases translated from English to Kannada. The translations are written based on how the word or phrase would be pronounced in Kannada.

  3. Videogyan Kids – Learn Kannada
    This YouTube channel provides a playlist solely focused on teaching Kannada. Some topics covered include fruits, vegetables, body parts, colors, shapes, relationships, common phrases, grammar, days of the week, etc. These videos are ideal learning tools because with the included pictures and graphics you can see how the words and phrases are written and also hear how they are pronounced.

  4. My Languages – Learn Kannada
    My Languages offers many seemingly endless lists of English to Kannada translations. This site is ideal for learning Kannada grammar and how to write certain words and phrases in Kannada script. Some of the topics covered include alphabet, adjectives, numbers, nouns, verbs, phrases, questions, etc. The site also provides a unique and helpful feature to practice your Kannada script writing: it has a search engine where you can type your name and after pressing enter, your name will be translated into Kannada script.

  5. iLanguages – Learn Kannada
    This link provides lessons teaching Kannada vocabulary, phrases, and grammar. The lessons show lists of translations in script and pronunciation with helpful audio files. iLanguages also offers language flashcards and quizzes to help you practice and apply what you have learned.

  6. Kannada –
    This link gives preliminary lessons in spoken Kannada and grammar lessons. The preliminary lesson topics in Spoken Kannada include yes-no questions, basic vocabulary, interrogative sentences, etc. These preliminary lessons also show the transliterations of the topic related phrases. The grammar lesson topics include the phonological system, the noun phrase, the verb phrase, and syntax. These lessons are scanned pages from a text book that goes well in-depth about Kannada grammar. The grammar lessons teaching Kannada are thorough and well-explained.

  7. Kannada Baruthe –
    This site provides a number of lists of common words and phrases that are translated from English to Kannada. The topics that are covered include greetings, directions, relationships, numbers, vegetables, fruits, colors, and talking to certain people. The lists provide the translation written in Kannada and gives you the convenient option of hearing how the words and phrases are pronounced.

Photo Credit: Romana Klee
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