Hausa Proverbs


Find below ten advanced level Hausa lessons, each linked to a Hausa proverb. For each proverb, there is a video containing an improvised skit intended to reflect the meaning of the proverb. Along with the video is a word-for-word transcription of the skit, a glossary for difficult words or phrases, and a set of exercises aimed at determining a student’s comprehension of the skit.

Each lesson addresses the four language skills based upon ACTFL guidelines (speaking, writing, listening and reading) while also capturing key cultural and social realities of language use in its native context. In addition, each skit reflects the varieties of the language spoken in urban and rural areas, and between the elderly, adults and children. Unlike top-down models of language instruction, the African Proverbs Project uses a bottom-up approach designed to equip advanced learners with the ability to shift between several dialects. Moreover, the Proverbs Project provides learners with the necessary cultural and kinesic competencies to converse fluently and see the world through the eyes of native-speakers.

Hausa Proverbs


“’In ka iya ruwa, ka iya laka?”


“A bar kaza cikin gashinta.”


“Saki jikinka ɓarawo a hannun mata.”


“Кaiƙai koma kan masheƙiya.”


“Komi da nashi rana.”


“Iya ruwa hidda kai.”


“Hausa ba dabo ba ne.”


“Rena kama, ka ga gayya.”


“Ka san na sani, ka san na bari.”


“Tsohon gatarinka, ya hi sari ka ba ni.”

Project Participants

Dr. Fallou Ngom (Project Director) Dr. John Hutchison (Overseas Coordinator) Mr. Yazi Dogo (Ajami Coordinator) Mr. Ibro Chekaraou (Latin Transcription) Dr. Peter D. Quella (Project Manager) Dr. Jennifer Yanco (Senior Advisor) Ƙungiyar Yazi Dogo (Actors) IFTIC (Crew) Ms. Lori De Lucia (Multimedia Management) Mr. Zachary Gersten (Project Assistant) Music: Aboubacar Tar