Volunteer English Teacher
YES alumna Waad Kahouli ‘09 spent the week of June 14th-19th volunteering her time as an English teacher at El Mess'ad Elementary School where her younger brother attends. Waad taught children aged 7-9 every day from 8 to 11a.m., and incorporated activities and games such as “hangman” and “seven up” into her English lessons. She also included a little bit of geography in each lesson, in order to share her experiences on the YES program while in the United States. The children also sang songs, and learned American dances such as the cupid shuffle!
Also as part of her teaching efforts; Waad helped several students memorize an English song by Celine Dion called “My Heart Will Go On” that was to be performed in the school’s end- of- year Variety Show. Waad assisted during the rehearsals, and helped direct the students in their various roles. It was an intense week for Waad, but she was extremely appreciative of the experience. “It was a unique experience, and I was happy to know that these children learned a thing or two from me, because I certainly learned a few things from them!” said Waad.
Alumni Hosn Al Assir ‘09 and Cyrine Hammouda ‘09 continued the theme of English language training during a visit to the SOS orphanage in Gammarth Village, to conduct the first of several gatherings for their English Club. With club meetings taking place through the months of May and June, many children participated in the lessons and activities at the village library.
All of the participants were around the age of 12, and each child was tasked with the challenge of speaking English under the guidance of the alumni. Several games and competitions were held, and the students were able to openly discuss all sorts of topics of interest in English. At the end of the sessions, Hosn and Cyrine were evaluated by the participants on their leadership and training. Both received an average of 9 out of 10 points from each student for their program’s efficiency. Cyrine summed up her experience by saying that she was, “very pleased and proud of being a part of this event. It felt amazing to be helpful and productive. Most of us were very spontaneous, and contributed in our own unique way! I think we were pretty successful, and we will hopefully come back to share more of our knowledge and provide a variety of educational tutoring sessions!”
Alumnus Mohamad Firas Arfaoui ‘09 has been spreading the word about the importance of community service through his Facebook editorial “Community Service in the Arab-Muslim World.” In the article; Mohamad compared the values and expectations of community service in the U.S. to those in Tunisia. Mohamad discussed his community service work in the U.S. during his exchange on the YES program, and how it has been difficult to cultivate and promote the beliefs and ideals of volunteerism in Tunisia. Through his editorial, Mohamed challenged all Arab Muslims throughout the Middle East to take more responsibility for community building and service activities in their respective countries. You can access Mohamed’s editorial at: