Good teachers explain – Great teachers inspire

Souad Abi Ishak is in the second year of her Teach For Lebanon Fellowship, teaching theater at Al Nahda Public School for girls in Tripoli.

Souad’s passion is arts. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Radio TV and Film from the Lebanese International University (LIU). She joined TFL after graduating with the aim to make a difference in the educational field and to prove that learning with art is important.

“Via theater, I can give my students an opportunity to express their emotions. My aim is to build their confidence and show them that they are able to achieve much more than they think. My students at Al-Nahda are exclusively girls and many of them grew up in a rather conservative social setting; theater classes make a big difference in their lives”.

Souad has been a Red Cross volunteer since 2013, as a member of the Emergency medical team. Working with openness, honesty, respect and generosity, her volunteering work is in line with TFL’s core values which are empathy, commitment to equality and mutual responsibility.

“I was able to be the first responder for many medical emergencies at Al-Nahda. We also held a First Aid Training with the encouragement of the school principal.Souad 2

In the end, regardless of the services, the aim of the two organizations are the same, serving others without expecting anything in return”.

In her lessons, Souad uses drama activities and mixes fun sessions with more serious periods. This is challenging because the classes have to be adapted to the different age groups – Souad teaches students from 5 to 13 years – and each class comprises around 25 to 30 children.

“As teachers, we play an important role in students’ lives and are often confronted with their personal issues. It’s not only about educational purposes but also about being there for them on a personal level. TFL gave us the opportunity to be inspiring to others”.

Asked what benefit schools and students pull out of TFL Fellows, Souad highlights TFL’s innovative methodology which visibly induces energy and triggers outside-the-box thinking of students.

“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires”, William A. Ward.