If you want to be able to read as well as understand basic Arabic texts, you need to acquire some basic vocabulary. Basic communication phrases to express your gratitude, hospitality and some different forms of greeting would greatly help you in your journey to learn Arabic. Although self-learning is a good first step to learn Arabic, it is always preferable to seek guidance in order to learn properly.
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Diacritics are usually forgotten; however, they are extremely important in order to learn Arabic pronunciation. Diacritics (تشكيل), pronounced as Tashkil, literally means Forming, which is its main function, since Arabic letters on their own, without Tashkil, do not show proper guidance as to the proper Arabic pronunciation. Therefore, learning diacritics goes hand in hand with learning Arabic.
If your interested to learn more check this article: Learn Arabic Diacritics: Tashkil