One day, one of my most eager Saudi students came to me after class. She did this several times as she was eager to improve her English and sometimes had a question, asked for a resource or just wanted to share, utilizing her English. Though she felt she was very bad in English, I felt she was one of my best students because she tried her best and was motivated to learn. On this particular day, she shared with me that the day before, she had been sitting at home with nothing to do and just began to write a diary (entry) of her life.
She was so proud of what she wrote having written her thoughts out in English to the best of her abilities. She thought it wouldn’t make much sense as she handed her notebook to me to read. However, as I read it, I was amazed by what she had written and how she had expressed herself. I encouraged her that what she did was a great example of her desire to learn and improve her English because some students barely want to do any work in class, let alone attempt to express themselves in written form outside of class as she did. I impressed upon her that even she was going a step further by both thinking about her feelings and expressing what she felt about her life in English. Even though there were some mistakes, her efforts were far greater than any apparent errors and that I could understand what she had written and meant despite her (writing) mistakes.
As a matter of fact, understanding what she meant caused my eyes to water, and I almost cried. Thinking about her being so eager to learn with such big hopes for her future which to her will never see the light of day because of the restrictions placed on her as a woman in Saudi Arabia and what she feels her religion will dictate for her future. I tried to encourage her that she can be successful and to not give up her hopes for her future because anything is possible. Not only that, but as she keeps practicing her English will continue to improve, as well.
So without further ado, you may read her thoughts (below) about her life that she shared with me on that day.
[Click on the image for a larger view.]
So what are your thoughts about what my student shared? What was your feeling as you were reading?
- Saudi youth call for end of religious rule (ifaynsh.wordpress.com)
- Saudi Women’s Spring (nationalinterest.org)
- No Female Olympians for Saudi Arabia (patheos.com)
- How to Learn English (answers.com)
- How to Teach English Effectively (socyberty.com)
- 70 Ways To Improve Your English (doetaec.wordpress.com)