The Sanskrit language in many parts of the world is a new element in today's education. It is an ideal study for the young because its systematic grammar orders the student's mind. At the same time, Sanskrit literature provides the student with an exciting and profound interaction with a classical culture. Furthermore, because Sanskrit is very close to the source of all Indo-European languages, it helps the student appreciate the underlying structure of language as a whole.
`Stories from the Mahabharata% a new series of Sanskrit textbooks, presents the epic Mahabharata' in stories which develop students' knowledge of grammar in a gradual way. It is strongly suggested that students should have completed the preceding section of this course, The Story of Rama' (Parts 1 and 2), before starting this book.
READING AND WRITING THE DEVANAGARI SCRIPT
Fluent reading and writing of the devanagari script is essential at this point. If the students are commencing this book after the holidays, you will probably want to spend some time practising reading, writing and dictation exercises.
ORAL AND LISTENING EXERCISES
When teaching this course, it is very useful to have an oral component to each lesson. If students spend all their time doing written work and never speaking the language, their learning will not stick. Similarly, listening exercises (i.e., lis-tening to a story read in Sanskrit and then answering questions about it) help to immerse the student in the 'Sanskrit mindset' . Thus, the exercises given in this book can always be used as oral and listening exercises, and games and compe-titions are even more effective. The same is true in learning paradigms. Students should not expect that they will learn their case endings by looking them up. Learning of paradigms should be primarily through recitation in the traditional manner (i.e., by the order of singu-lar, dual and plural for each case). As a supporting method, learning for tests
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