The English club that has been running since the beginning of January at the Excellence Center wrapped up on Saturday. The group met twice a week for the month of January. The Palestinian participants, who ranged in number between 30 and 15, were mainly university students or recent graduates from a variety of fields. The diverse group and their excellent level of English allowed for some in-depth discussion of a wide variety of topics and an interesting and exciting class.
The basis of this English club was free discussion with the goal of allowing participants to speak English as much as possible during the two hours and acquire new vocabulary. This was achieved through a variety of activities, such as student presentations, debate, video discussion and intensive discussion of controversial topics. Topics ranged from movies and music, the pros and cons of globalization, to more touchy topics like religious diversity and tolerance worldwide and feminist theory. “As the classes progressed, we realized we could challenge the students more and more with the topics we chose,” said Melanie, who coordinated the club, “they really rose to the occasion and were grateful for the challenge.”
The class was facilitated by Melanie and Nazeer who are participating in the Volunteer in Palestine and Teach English Speak Arabic programs, for the first few weeks with Katharina arriving for the final sessions. The variety of facilitators was a great enrichment to the development of the class, as they all brought their own personal flair and areas of expertise to the discussions. But in the end, said Melanie, “The students really showed us the way on this one. I feel very humbled and privileged to have worked with this amazing group of people.”