Mintzanet: Basque online and free
I found out about Mintzanet a few months ago, and I thought it was a great initiative. I read up on it, figured out where to take the test (it’s free and you do it on your own), but it wasn’t until last month that I decided to sign up. The process was really easy, and Cristina, Mintzanet’s coordinator, helped me every step of the way. I have my first one-on-one session on Saturday, and I’m super excited!
Mintzanet makes practicing easy for people learning Basque, especially for those of us who live outside of the Basque Country. All the information you need is below.
If you don’t feel ready for Mintzanet at the moment, you can check out other Basque resources at: Writing in Basque: Tools to get you there.
The aim of Mintzanet is to offer the possibility of practising Basque to everyone. The initiative is completely free and is based on two pillars: the bidelaris and bidelagunas. The bidelaguna is a person who is proficient in the language and helps those who are studying. The bidelari, on the other hand, wants to learn and improve.
Thus, the purpose of this initiative is to provide all Basque speakers, both those who live in the Basque Country and those living in other parts of the world, with an opportunity to practise. A minimum level will be required to ensure the possibility of basic communication (A2-B1).
Mintzanet’s goal is for this free project to continue to grow and, although the priority is to attract bidelagunas, they also need bidelaris.
Bidelaria: S/he is learning Basque and wants to improve his/her level, so s/he needs someone else’s help. To take part, a minimum level is required. They must be able to maintain a conversation. To show this, they will have to do a small test (B1 level).
Bidelaguna: someone who knows the language well offers his/her help to someone else so the latter can practise the language (no title needed). S/he is a helper.
Conversations take place in pairs.
For more information or to sign up, visit Mintzanet’s website or email Cristina Tapia, Mintzanet coordinator.
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Any suggestions for someone who neither speaks nor reads Basque to start the learning process?
Hello María, I started with this when my son asked me to teach him Basque. It’s a good course to get familiar with the language, and it’s free! It’s called Curso Deusto de Euskera, but it’s explained in Spanish. If you only speak English, you might want to try Ikasten.net (www.hiru.com/e-ikasi/idiomas/ikasten). I must say I found navigating through that website a bit confusing, but maybe it is just me! You can also check my post Writing in Basque: Tools to get you there (https://weblogs.eitb.eus/basqueboise/2012/04/04/writing-in-basque-tools-to-get-you-there), where I’ve gather the various resources for learning Basque that I found along the way. I hope this helps!