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Teaching etiquette in Saudi Arabia

 
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Pitter-patter-pick-a.....



Joined: 08 May 2014
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2014 12:54 pm    Post subject: Teaching etiquette in Saudi Arabia Reply with quote

Hi. I have a few questions about teaching ESL in Saudi unis, particularly Riyadh:

1) What kind of cultural frame of reference do they have? I know movies are officially banned, but I've read that lots of people have satellites. So do they know the typical western celebrities, or are they more familiar with politicians, etc.?

2) Would it be OK to give them western nicknames?

3) If I attempt to explain or justify giving them names, will I be seen as weak? More generally, how authoritative should I be?

Cool I've read that justice has a more of an "ask questions later" attitude in KSA. So I'm wondering if the students know how easily they could make my life hell. If so, this dictates how I would treat them, of course.

5) Related to question 3, what sort of character do they expect or appreciate in a foreign ESL teacher?

6) Do they respond well to projects that push them to use English in a real setting, like submitting writing for online publication or making a movie for a film competition?

7) Is it ever permissible to bring the students out of the classroom to a new location?

Thanks very much!
Matt
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St. George



Joined: 06 Oct 2004
Posts: 106
Location: Ex Libya

PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2014 10:35 pm    Post subject: ETIQUETTE Reply with quote

Hello Pitter-patter-pick-a.....

Generally, the students are respectful to their teacher. However, there will be one or two who are not and therefore, you will have to discipline them, as you would in the West. It is your classroom and you are in charge and so you must set the rules at the outset and don't put up with any nonsense. Whatever you do, they will make your life hell, so you may as well do what you want to do. It really depends on how you want to run your class and not how they want you to run it.

Justice depends on who you know. So, if you know someone in authority then the law doesnít exist. The law of the land is Islam and everybody has to follow the law in public but you can do what you like behind closed doors and they do. They know about everything in the west. They watch blue movies, drink alcohol and have sex before marriage but all behind closed doors, so you are in for a shock if you think praying five times a day makes them into saints

I don't think it is a good idea to give them any kind of nickname because they are usually named after the prophet Mohammed or their fathers or their names have some religious significance. Therefore, I donít think it will help them to get in the groove.

They like colouring-in pictures

Best of luck

St. G
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