Press coverage: “Varanasi’s gurus go online for their foreign shishyas,” Times of India, 17 August 2013.

While e-classrooms are not a new concept, it’s only recently that international students who used to come to Varanasi to learn music and Indian languages have turned to city-based gurus to teach them online. Binit Kumar Mishra, language instructor who runs a language school at Assi Ghat, spends a considerable time holding video classes via Skype. “There has been a nearly 60% increase in my students since the time I opened up to technology. This course, which is for both beginners and advanced learners, has a lot of takers who are unable to be present for the classes due to various reasons. We hold e-classes on one-on-one basis, so that students are able to speak and write the language fluently. Though we have students from all over the world, a huge chunk is from the US. That’s because a large number of exchange programmes are being run between the governments of both these countries and students who wish to visit India in future, prefer to learn the language in advance,” he says.


Banaras Times, Sunday 21 September 

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  1. My name is Jeffrey Hemming and I am sharing my experience about learning Hindi in Varanasi with Binit Kumar Mishra I have been a teacher and student of languages off and on for the last 40 years. My primary area has been Chinese and Japanese.

    I taught Japanese in High School and also Mandarin conversation
    at the University of Hawaii in their non-credit program. I have an M.A. in Chinesefrom the University of WA.

    I was in Varanasi this past year and had the distinct pleasure of studying Hindi with Binit for two hours a day for five days a week for over a month. I was able to gain a clear insight into his teaching methods and style and qualifications.

    To begin with Binit has the necessary combination, which unfortunately is often lacking in many instructors, of having an excellent command of both the target language(his native tongue)
    and the language of instruction. His facility in English and extensive knowledge of Hindi grammar and his ability to explain that knowledge simply and clearly in English is priceless. No time wastedin trying to grasp the point!

    And Binit also has that wonderful quality that many teachers no matter how much knowledge they may have in their specific area of expertise or teaching methodology, for that matter, will often struggle to be a Successful teacher without; and that is, a friendly, engaging
    expansive, accepting, warm personality. He is a pleasure to know and study with. I highly appreciate his teaching.

  2. Being a language freak, I never thought I would get lost in the vastness of Hindi grammar and the breadth of its vocabulary. With a lack of proper learning resources and teachers, I was not very far from hoisting the white flag and putting my Hindi books aside. But my journey to Varanasi changed everything.

    In this holy city on the west bank of the Ganges, I had the great privilege of being taught by one of the best language teachers I’ve ever had – Mr Binit Kumar Mishra. In one month of private lessons, my knowledge of Hindi improved significantly – more than in seven months of studying it on my own.

    What makes Binit a good teacher is not only his knowledge, but also his strong desire to learn more, and his commitment to continually enhancing his teaching skills. He is also very friendly and warm, encouraging and extremely patient. But what makes Binit an excellent teacher, in my opinion, is his ability to explain complex things in a simple way – an asset that not many in the teaching profession possess.

    Having studied more than ten foreign languages, with many different teachers and by a variety of methods, I have found Binit to be one of the most professional and inspirational teachers I’ve ever met. And needless to say, I’ve continued to learn Hindi with great enthusiasm since leaving Varanasi.

  3. Binit is an excellent Hindi teacher. He is very knowledgeable, has a lot of teaching experience, and guides students through the difficult steps of the process of learning Hindi in an effective and fun way.

    Binit is very friendly and personable. He warmly welcomes people from other countries to Varanasi and makes them feel at home there. He teaches Hindi while highlighting many aspects of Indian life and culture as related to the language and people’s lives.

    Binit quickly assesses students’ proficiency level and then provides the type of instruction that students need most. For example, although I had already studied Hindi on my own with the help of videos, CD’s, and books for a few months, when I went to Varanasi I was not very familiar with reading and writing in the Devangari alphabet. During our classes Binit made sure that I would concentrate on these aspects so that I could quickly improve.

    In Hindu tradition “अतिथि देवो भवः” ‘athiti devo bhavah’ (Sanskrit; in English: ‘The guest is God’), and I feel that Binit honors that tradition

  4. As a student on Princeton’s Bridge Year Program I am happy to report that Binit-ji is a first rate Hindi instructor. In a three week intensive course of study we have learned every verb tense, the script, and a sizable amount of vocabulary. We have already progressed onto regular readings in Devanagari. Additionally, my interaction with the locals has shown the effectiveness of this teaching, as I am able to communicate and interact at a basic level. This has allowed for effective navigation of cities, buying of goods, and has given me the confidence to start conversations with natives. I am sad to leave behind Binti-ji’s teachings, but I am sure that he has provided me with an impeccable base of knowledge on which to improve my skills.

  5. Binit was my teacher for the 9 days I just spent in Varanasi. I already had the basics covered, and he quickly identified where I was and pushed me to improve from that level. Our lessons were fun, challenging, and rigorous. We worked on reading speed, vocabulary expansion, conversation and grammar. Binit also gave me homework to do each night which kept me accountable for what I’d learned the day before. He is energetic, infallibly upbeat, and was always on-time. If you’re in Varanasi, I could not recommend him more. I hope to work with Binit for a longer period in the future.

  6. Namaste Binitji! 😀 I’ve just come back from Varanasi.
    I had a wonderful experience (I say wonderful because I think that the word “great” wouldn’t be the right word to express how I was happy to have the luck to stay there).
    I was very lucky in having you as my Hindi teacher and I’d like to keep studying with you through Skype! Thanks to you I feel that my Hindi is much stronger than before and I feel much more confident. I found your lessons very clear, rich and detaleid, with a great attention and care for the student.

  7. My name is Thomas, I am a swiss traveller. In february I stayed for one month in Varanasi and had the occasion to learn hindi with Binit. During four weeks I had an individual, intensive course and learned the devanagari-script, the basic grammar and vocabulary. So I am able to speak with indian people on a basic level and to read informations in everyday life.
    Binit is a very good teacher because he can see and feel the abilities of his students, he is very flexible concerning the time and length of the lessons. By the way, Binit speaks very good english, so the communication is never a problem. Finally we had fun not only during the the lessons and the drill, Binit organised also interesting outdoor activities (movie).
    So, bahut dhanyavad Binitji and I hope, we will meet us some times!

  8. Cherchant un professeur de hindi et aimant énormément Varanasi, je suis tombée sur le site en fouillant sur le net. Et depuis 4 mois, je prends des cours par skype avec Binit ji, depuis la France.
    J’en suis enchantée!
    Binit ji s’adapte à mon niveau d’anglais et peut même utiliser le français si nécessaire.
    Nous avançons à mon rythme, sans aucune pression. Les devoirs entre chaque leçon me permettent de mieux les assimiler.
    Binit ji est un professeur pédagogue, patient et valorisant.
    Je vous le recommande avec enthousiasme!

  9. My name is Khushi and I would like to share my experience of the hindi classes I have been taking with Binit. I live in Miami, Fl. so I have been taking lesson via skype. I have been taking skype classes with Binit since the beginning of the year and it has been very helpful.It takes a while to learn the vocabulary and grammar, but now my classes have started to get fun and challenging. I am learning to converse and translate in hindi. Binit is a very good teacher who can understand your strengths and limitations. I continue to take classes and let me say, they are very beneficial. .Try out these classes as soon as possible!

  10. I lived in Varanasi as part of a study abroad program during the fall semester of 2013. Knowing myself not to be a language person, I had taken a year of Hindi before arriving in India to try to give myself some sort of running start. When I arrived, however, I was barely able to construct a sentence without consulting a textbook, and I felt overwhelmed.

    Binit ji did not waste a moment of time getting down to the nitty gritty. There was one other student who had also had prior Hindi experience, and we both enrolled in the intermediate level, although it soon became clear that our proficiency wasn’t what our program had thought it to be. Instead of letting us fend for ourselves, so to speak, Binit graciously and flexibly agreed to nearly double the amount of classes that were initially planned. It was a lot of work, and I missed more than one sunrise stroll on the ghats cramming for the next Hindi pariksa, but now that is all said done, I could not be more grateful.

    Under Binit ji I felt my knowledge and familiarity with vocabulary, grammatical constructions, and even colloquial expressions improve dramatically. Although I still have a long time before I can say I have truly learned the language, I now speak with a basic fluency and can conduct myself through extended, if remedial, conversations. I owe it all to Binit ji, and I sincerely hope I am able to learn from him in the future, whether over Skype or when I return to Varanasi. जानकारी और हँसी के लिए बहुत बहुत धन्यवाद बिनीत जी. आप मालिक हैं! 🙂

  11. Binit is a wonderful teacher because he cares so much about his students. He explains Hindi grammar systematically and then drills your usage of it using conversation. I spent five hours each day with Binit for one month and not only did I learn a lot (up to Intermediate level) but also had a wonderful time – the classes flew by. He is open and flexible with any plan or style of learning Hindi, so if you let him know your preferences about what you want to study, he will accommodate them. He is warm, engaging, and great at teaching. A pleasure to learn Hindi with him!

  12. Namaste,

    I can only confirm that Binit is an excellent teacher, flexible, punctual, knows English very well, is well structured, and makes you advance quite quickly which is not the case with self-study. He also asked me to start writing in Hindi during the classes, something which was painfully slow in the beginning, but I am glad he made me do this. He is also very accurate and spots any possible mistake you might make. Would highly recommend Binit as a teacher for Hindi in Varanasi.

  13. Review from Anne Vallely, Professor of Religious Studies, University of Ottawa, Canada on said:

    Binit Kumar Mishra is a gifted language teacher with the ‘patience of Job’ and an encyclopedic mind for all things Hindi-related. Binit has the training and flexibility to teach to all levels – so-called “emergency” Hindi for the total beginner uninterested in learning the devanagari script and grammar-shy, to those who are already comfortable speaking Hindi, but need to work on some specific weakness. I have been coming to India for many years for research, and decided this time to revisit Hindi learning for a short but intensive few days while I was in Varanasi. Within minutes of speaking with Binit, he could determine my language level and those areas in need of special attention. Binit is calm and easy-going, but also brings a seriousnesss and dedication to his teaching that is impressive. I hope to bring my own Canadian students to Varanasi (as part of a larger course on Indian religions) and have them learn some language basics at Binit Kumar’s school, which is ideally situated at popular, and laid-back, Assi Ghat. I suspect their days spent learning Hindi will be a highlight of their stay, as it was for me. I cannot recommend the school, and Binit Kumar Mishra, more strongly.

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