Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 1, Issue 30, Tuesday December 23, 2003







Dhaka Language Club

Since its inception in 1995, the Dhaka Language Club has established itself amongst the students in the city as a popular institution for language courses. The 'club' offers 13 different languages, in addition to courses for IELTS, TOEFL, SAT and GMAT. The courses are taught by experienced teachers from both home and abroad, making the institution very effective in its aid to students.

The idea of the academy of languages comes from its founder and president, Masud A Khan, who started the institution with an aim to help students from all backgrounds accommodate to different languages. "We intend to diminish the barriers of languages and the communication gap faced by professionals and students of our country," adds Masud. Although the Dhaka Language Club, with teachers from different foreign missions and universities in Dhaka, struggled against the odds in the beginning, it soon obtained a good reputation amidst students. Its innovative teaching methods and extra classes for weak students, makes it easier for pupils to learn new languages. Languages such as French, Japanese, Arabic, Korean, German and even Russian are taught using different systems.

The courses start with basic communication skills and moves onto higher standards, such as reading and writing for most foreign languages. The curriculum was originally hard to set, mainly because of the fact that foreign languages are hard to catch for new learners, but over the years the club has adopted an effective teaching method. The institution has held seminars and this has improved the awareness in the city, over the need for learning new things. However, the foreign language courses are mostly taken by professionals or students who wish to visit countries abroad, rather than individuals who just show the eagerness to learn a new language. Most of the students are professionals and undergraduate students from private universities in Dhaka. They also have options of class timing after working hours for professionals who work.

Surprisingly enough the Japanese courses are the most popular, and are taken by quite a few students. With the option of learning up to four different languages at a time, the institution can be quite helpful for individuals who wish to work or study in countries, which speak more than one language. Dhaka Language Club emphasises on proficiency the most for different languages. The name 'club' adds to the language centre, because it attracts people from different fields to come together in discussions about different languages. These meetings or discussions are held once or twice in a month and are attended by members. There are two membership schemes, life membership and general membership, both of which are quite reasonable. Language cannot be learnt completely without proper conversations once in a while, and this feature of the club really makes it quite different from the rest.

Their English courses are also quite good, with an IELTS average score of 7 over the years. TOEFL courses are equally impressive. Bangla is taught for foreigners only at the club.

Learning new languages definitely broadens ones horizon and not to mention adds to the CV. But at the end of the day, job opportunities increase both home and abroad. The Dhaka Language Club is situated at House no.395, Road no.29, New DOHS, Mohakhali. Tel. 019340586.

By Mishel Ali Khan

Indian savouries by Vidya Prasad

It's month of December. 4th December was Cookies day and 18th December is Bake Cookies Day. Also, Christmas is just around the corner. Here are some tasty biscuits and cakes recipes that can even be used for birthday and parties and also as variety snacks.

The basic method for making a biscuit is as follows:
1. Beat the butter (should be at room temperature) together with the sugar till creamy.
2. Then add in any flavouring, flour and baking powder.
3. Combine to make soft but workable dough.
4. Shape as desired and bake in a moderate oven (180o C) for 10 to 15 minutes or until done.

Almond Biscuits:
Ingredients required:
250 grams Butter
¼ cup Castor Sugar
½ Tea spoon Vanilla Essence
1 Tea spoon Rose Water
2 cups Almonds, finely ground
1½ Tea spoon Baking Powder
Flour, as required
Preparation method:
1. Follow the basic method.
2. Add in almonds.
3. Shape as desired and bake till done.

Plain Cashew-nut Biscuits:
Ingredients required:
250 grams Butter
¼ cup Castor Sugar
2 Tea spoon Water
1 cup Cashew-nuts, finely ground
1½ Tea spoon Rose Water
1½ Cups Flour
¼ cup Castor Sugar, for decoration
Preparation method:
1. Follow the basic method.
2. Add in Cashew nuts.
3. Shape into thin sausages and bend into a horseshoe shape.
4. Bake till done.
5. Then roll in Castor Sugar whilst warm.
Light Loaf Cake:
Ingredients required:
125 grams Butter (softened)
¾ cup Castor Sugar
2 Eggs
1 Tea Spoon Vanilla Essence
2 Tea Spoon Baking Powder
1½ cup Flour (Maida)
½ cup Milk
1 pinch Salt
Preparation method:
1. Cream the butter & sugar till light & fluffy.
2. Add in the eggs one at a time & beat slightly.
3. Add in the Vanilla essence.
4. Sift the dry ingredients (Maida, Baking Powder & Salt) together.
5. Add this into the butter mixture.
6. Alternate with the milk to form a pouring consistency.
7. Pour into a greased loaf pan & bake at 180o C for 30 to 35 minutes.
8. Turn out onto cooling rack & cool.

Chocolate Cake:
Ingredients required:
125 grams Softened Butter
2 TBL spoon Cocoa
1 cup Castor Sugar
4 Eggs
1 Tea Spoon Vanilla Essence
2½ Tea Spoon Baking Powder
1 cup Flour
½ cup Milk
1½ cup Icing Sugar
1 TBL spoon Coca
1 TBL Margarine
Drop of Milk
Preparation method:
1. Cream the butter & sugar till light & fluffy.
2. Add in the eggs one at a time & beat slightly.
3. Add in the vanilla essence.
4. Sift the dry ingredients together.
5. Add into the butter mixture, alternating with the milk to form a pouring consistency.
6. Pour into a greased sandwich tins & bake at 180o C for 30 to 35 minutes or till done.
7. Turn out & cool.
8. Mix the icing ingredients till creamy.
9. Sandwich the two cakes together with icing & smear rest of icing over the top of the cake.

Orange Cake:
Ingredients required:
2 cups Biscuit mix (any commercial mix will do)
1 ½ cup Sugar
2 Eggs
1 TBL Spoon Grated Orange rind
½ cup orange juice
3 TBL spoon Butter
1 Tea Spoon Vanilla essence
Preparation method:
1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
2. Beat well, about 5 minutes with electric mixer.
3. Bake in a greased & floured baking pan for about 30 to 35 minutes.
4. Combine confectioners, sugar, grated orange rind & Orange juice.
Drizzle over warm cake.


For a sound sleep…

Many of us fumble for the perfect cure for sleepless nights in our every day life. There are some simple yet effective practices, which can do magic and grant you deep sleep each night. Instead of going to an expert right away, try the following tricks.

First of all, try to build and maintain a regular sleep schedule. Don't stay on your bed for too long on one morning or go to sleep very late at one night. Oversleeping is often a big problem. If you oversleep on one morning, then it's very likely that you would have a hard time inviting a good sleep to your eyes during the bedtime. So, try to go to sleep and wake up every day according to your own sleep schedule. And follow the schedule even on your weekends.

Experts say that it's not good to have a meal at least 2 hours before one plans to go to sleep. One common cause of sleeplessness is the many trips to the toilet. So if you wish to cut down on the toilet trips after bedtime, try avoiding drinking too much liquid before going to sleep.

Many people relate that a hot shower before bedtime brings in deep sleep. So, you too can wallow in a warm and delightful shower before heading for the bed.

An afternoon nap is another cause of sleeplessness. Try not to fall asleep after your lunch to ensure an undisturbed sleep at nighttime.

Try to create a cozy environment in your bedroom. Turn off the TV if you feel that the blare from the television is deterring a sound sleep. Shut the windows or draw the curtains to prevent outside noise hampering your sleep. Turn off the lights and turn on some soft music to tempt a peaceful sleep.

Sometimes, light exercises during the evening help people grab a good sleep for themselves at night. So you too can try to do some light physical exercises after dusk.

Remember that if the above tips fail to bring deep sleep to you at night, then don't forget to see an expert. Although it is very likely that you are reading this article on a bright sunny morning, but I can't wait to wish you all "Sweet Dreams" for the following night.

By Wara Karim

Hanging Out

Helvetia at Uttara

Helvetia has just opened their new branch at Uttara. The classy décor, both inside and out, has added to the flavour of the gustatory fast food served at the store. The location is superb; as a matter of fact, you can spot the new Helvetia right from the freeway. So, if you ever come along Uttara for a long drive then you can stop by this place to sink your teeth into their delicious foodstuffs. Prices have remained the same, and their speciality, the chicken broasts, bear the usual yummy savor.

The new Helvetia has been smartly decorated with colourful and cute chairs and tables. The ceiling has been done tastefully with lighting arrangement in refined shades. There is even a special corner for kids, equipped with playthings.

The most interesting aspect of this new branch is that Helvetia has introduced a wide range of pastries for their consumers. Different kinds of sweet delicacies now grace their shelves. So if you have a tooth for the sweet then you too can try out these tantalising pastries. And for those of you who reside in Uttara, you can come with your family to Helvetia to eat with relish some really good-tasting desserts after your dinner.

So don't wait, but pay a visit to this new branch of Helvetia whenever you come near the north zone of Dhaka. The embellishment of the outlet is alone eye-catching enough to drag you inside.

Address: House #13, Road # 14B, Sector # 4, Uttara, Dhaka.

By Wara Karim


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