Elisa Jennings, GLN 2019 Leadership Fellow – Operations, Curriculum & Teacher Support and GLN Spanish Teacher, interviews Azin Arbab, GLN’s Farsi Teacher for our upcoming 6 Week Farsi Foreigner class. GLN is thankful for our growing Farsi program and is a space for gaining a new perspective through cross-cultural dialogue.
Among all the rest of the 6-Week classes that the Global Language Network offers, we are proud to be offering Farsi (also known as Persian) Foreigner with one of our newest and most enthusiastic teachers, Azin! Azin, originally from Iran, has a lot to be celebrating right now. Along with getting ready for her brand-new class, this is also the season that Azin, and many other Iranians, celebrate the Persian New Year.
Persian New Year, or Nowruz, is starting this year on the Spring Equinox, March 21st. Meaning, “new day,” Nowruz is a festival which marks the beginning of the year with the beginning of Spring, a time where the world comes to life again after the dead of winter. Following Nowruz, there is a 13 day festival that is celebrated with spring cleaning which incorporates the feeling of renewal into the holiday, along with family reunions and gift-giving.
Along with cleaning, families prepare a haft-seen, a collection of seven foods, all beginning with the letter “S.” Each embodies a different value for the holiday: sabzeh, barley for rebirth, senjed, dried fruit for love, sib, apples for health, seer, garlic for medicine, semanu, pudding for fertility, serkeh, vinegar for wisdom, and sumac, spices for new sunrises. Some families might put other things with the collection like mirrors, candles, religious texts, or goldfish. This collection of symbolic foods are supposed to celebrate the bounty of nature and the fact that the natural world has begun to grow and create new life.
Accordingly, the last day of the holiday is often spent picnicking, enjoying the fruits of nature while enjoying the warmth of the world coming to life. Most of the foods eaten during the festival contain herbs, vegetables and greenery reflective of spring. The 13-day festival is a time to start again, to reunite with family and the universe as a whole.
If you’re interested in learning more about the roots and traditions of Nowruz, you should definitely register for our newly-opened class 6-Week Farsi Foreigner with Azin. Not only will you be able to learn about the culture of Nowruz, but you’ll also be able to learn the Persian words to properly describe this deeply important holiday!
Please join GLN in class by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.