16 January 2019 - Qatar
As part of the UCL Qatar and Qatar Museums Origins of Doha and Qatar project, UCL Qatar has developed an innovative presentation to support schoolteachers in teaching the history of Qatari homes.
Throughout the 2018/19 school year, UCL Qatar aims to reach thousands of students between the ages of 6 and 11, developing their knowledge of the history of Qatari traditions and the main architectural features of homes in the 1930s and 40s.
The Origins of Doha and Qatar project, which these materials form part of, is funded by the Qatar National Research Fund’s National Priorities Research Program (NPRP), and draws on archaeology, history and geography to depict the historical development of Qatar. The materials are designed to be used by teachers to support the curricula approved by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education.
The available school materials include: a children’s presentation titled: Traditional Qatari Homes, a teacher’s pack which includes a teacher’s presentation, and lesson plans. The tools were produced through a collaboration between the outreach team at UCL Qatar, Professor Robert Carter, Principal Investigator of the Origins of Doha and Qatar research project, and Mariam Al Thani, UCL Qatar alumna, who holds a UCL Qatar master’s degree in Archaeology of the Arab and Islamic World.
The materials are now available for school teachers to download from the UCL Qatar website. They have already been downloaded and presented to Qatar Foundation’s Education Development Institute by Mariam Al Thani, in a workshop held on the 29th January. The workshop was attended by teachers from the Institute, representing more than 800 students.
Mariam Al Thani gave her insight on the project: “I feel privileged to be able to work on the Origins of Doha and Qatar project. It has offered me the opportunity to become part of the team that’s making inroads in preserving, recording and safeguarding Qatar’s history for generations to come.”
The teachers’ pack has also been well-received by private institution teachers. Ms Beata Sulzycka, year four teacher at King's College Doha, was pleased with the impact it had on children: “I found that children's knowledge was broadened because of the additional information provided in the pack. There was a significant development in their interest towards Qatar History lessons and they started to look forward to the weekly lessons. I would recommend this pack to all teachers.”
UCL Qatar’s contribution to the Origins of Doha and Qatar research project forms part of the university’s broader work in Qatar to increase awareness in the rich archaeological and architectural history in the region, feeding into the knowledge-based economy of the country.
UCL Qatar’s Professor Robert Carter said: “We are very proud to be supporting the curriculum goals of the educational system of Qatar. These materials will provide students with an opportunity to learn about Qatar’s history, in a fun and innovative way. I am looking forward in seeing the benefits to students and teachers across the country throughout this year.”