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Level One
1.01 This and that
1.02 Introduction
1.03 Rainbow
1.04 Family
1.05 School
1.06 The House
1.07 Weather
1.08 Travel
1.09 Art
1.10 Science
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^ Indonesian ^ | << Lesson 7: Introducing Yourself | Lesson 8: My Family | Lesson 9: My Home >>

Bacaan (Reading Comprehension)


Nama saya Mira. Saya tinggal di Bae bersama ayah dan ibu. Saya punya seorang kakak laki-laki. Namanya Anto. Saya juga punya adik perempuan. Namanya Wati. Kakak saya dan adik perempuan saya juga tinggal bersama kami.

Ayah kerja di kantor setiap hari. Ibu tinggal di rumah, memasak makanan untuk kami. Setiap hari, saya, kakak dan adik perempuan saya pergi ke sekolah

Terjemahan (Translation):

My name is Mira I live in Bae with my father and mother. I have an older brother. His name is Anto. I also have a younger sister. Her name is Wati. My older brother and younger sister also live with us.

Father works at the office everyday. Mother stays at home, cooking food for us. Every day, myself, my older and younger siblings go to school.

Kosa Kata (Vocabulary)

  • adik = younger (brother/sister)
  • ayah = bapak = father
  • bersama = with
  • hari = day
  • ibu = mother
  • juga = also / too
  • kakak = older (brother/sister)
  • kerja = work
  • laki-laki = male
  • makanan = food
  • masak = cook
  • perempuan = female
  • pergi = go
  • punya = have
  • rumah = home / house
  • sekolah = school
  • seorang = one person
  • setiap = every
  • tinggal(*) = stay / live
  • untuk = for

Note: The word "tinggal" is a tricky word. If it is used alone (not conjugated), it means to live or to stay. However, if you conjugate it, it means to leave or to die. Many people got confused with this. Think of it from an Indonesian cultural perspective. Many indigenous Indonesians believe that when a person dies, the soul is here to stay.

Family Structure

  • Ayah is synonymous with bapak, which means father.You can use it interchangeably when referring to a father (or your father). Note that we call adult males as bapak for courtesy, but we never call them ayah. The word ayah is exclusively for the father-child relationship (whether by consanguinity or by law such as a stepfather).
  • Ibu means mother. Here, we don't make any distinction like bapak / ayah.
  • • Notice from the vocabulary list that Indonesian words for siblings are gender-free. The word "kakak" is used to describe an older sibling (older brother or older sister). The word "adik" is used to describe a younger sibling (younger brother or younger sister). In order to further distinguish the gender, we use gender words, e.g., "laki-laki" for male or "perempuan" for female. Other gender-free words are made distinct in a similar fashion.
  • Other family members:
    • Suami = husband
    • Istri = wife
    • Anak = child / children
    • Kakek = grandpa
    • Nenek = grandma
    • Paman = uncle
    • Bibi / tante = aunt
    • Sepupu = cousin
    • Keponakan = nephew / niece
    • Saudara = brother / sister
    • Saudara ipar = (brother/sister)-in-law
    • Ayah mertua = father-in-law
    • Mertua = mother & father-in-law
    • Ibu mertua = mother-in-law



Awalan Me- (Me- prefix)


In the passage, you'll notice the first prefix in Indonesian: me-. It's the most important and commonly used in Indonesian.

When it's combined with verbs like above (masak → memasak), it means the same as the infinitive form. The only thing is that we emphasize that now the verb is in active form.

Almost all verb can be conjugated using me-, but not all. Unfortunately, in order to know which verbs can go with me- , you must read a lot. The general rule of thumb is that if the verb is reflexive (i.e. doing it to ourself), it usually can't be conjugated with me-. Even more so, don't think that the sense of reflexivity is the same to that of your language. Below is some words that cannot be conjugated with me-, unless the meaning changes completely differently:

  • tinggal = stay (→ meninggal = to die)
  • tidur = sleep
  • duduk = sit
  • bangun = wake up (→ membangun = to build)
  • berdiri = get up
  • tawa = laugh

The prefix me- can also apply to other type of words, such as noun and adjectives. However, the rough goal is still the same: To make an active verb. So, you can verbize a noun or an adjective. Details on these will be covered later.

Note also that when words are conjugated with me-, the spelling is changed a little bit. The spelling change is called inflection. The inflection depends solely on the first letter of the original word. The rule on how the spelling changes can be viewed here: Prefix me- chapter.

Akhiran -an (Suffix -an)


Suffix -an is to nominalize a verb. Note the example from the passage: makan → makanan. Analoguous to the prefix me-, you can virtually nominalize almost any verb you want using -an suffix, as long as it makes sense.

Note, however, that the nominalisation of the verb does not correspond with the gerundive form (-ing form) expressing the action or state of action like in case of Western languages (i.e. eating), but the target or object of said action (i.e. food). You can think of it as "things that do what the verb says".

Some of the verbs may also function as nouns already. For example: tidur (= sleep), which can be noun and verb at the same time. In this case, you cannot add -an suffix on it to make a noun out of it. (Note that the word tiduran does exist, but the meaning is "to lie down casually", not "sleep").

Note also that some words may have dual meanings, like bangun, which may mean to wake up or to build. Of course, if you add -an suffix, the second meaning is taken, i.e.:

  • Bangun (= build) → Bangunan (= "things that was built" → building)

TODO: Load the chapter on suffix -an.

Awalan Se- (Prefix se-)


Prefix se- combined with noun would mean "one of that noun". In the example above, orang means person. Therefore, seorang means one person. In English, se + noun usually translates into a / an.

The se + noun word compounds are often used as a measure word, akin to those in Chinese. The measure words can be pretty complex. However, as being mentioned in the previous chapters, sebuah should be fine for most of the things. You must use seorang to indicate that the noun is a person, and use seekor for animals.

TODO: Load the chapter on prefix se-.

Grammar Summary


A simplified grammar summary for this chapter:

  • Me + verb → active verb
  • Verb + an → noun
  • Se + noun → one of that noun

^ Indonesian ^ | << Lesson 7: Introducing Yourself | Lesson 8: My Family | Lesson 9: My Home >>

Level One Lessons  

1.01 This and That  1.02 Introduction  1.03 Rainbow  1.04 Family  1.05 School  1.06 The House  1.07 Weather  1.08 Travel  1.09 Art  1.10 Science  Test  

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