Visitor Helps Freshmen Make Connections to Arabic Culture and Language

Visitor Helps Freshmen Make Connections to Arabic Culture and Language photo thumbnail161193

Rye Neck High School freshmen welcomed Mohamed Alsiadi, a professor and musician, as a special guest speaker in their Global 9 classes to further make connections to their studies on Jan. 9. During his visit, Alsiadi shared insight about the Arabic culture, language, art and music. 

“Alsiadi is very knowledgeable about Islam and Islamic culture, which we have been studying recently,” social studies teacher Marcella Scalise said. “The students have been learning about the historical beginnings of Islam and the influence of Islamic empires, including during their Golden Age.”  

During his visit, he discussed the origins of the Arabic language and taught the students how to say and write or draw specific Arabic words. He also discussed the arabesque form of Islamic art, played the oud and explained its significance. 

“I hope the students saw the connection between the historical topics relating to Islam and how it is today,” Scalise said. “I want them to have respect of all cultures, and it was helpful to have someone from the culture come in and speak to them.” 

Alsiadi moved from Aleppo, Syria, to New York City in 1996, and later became a professor of Arabic language, literature and culture. He is the lead professor and director for the Arabic studies program at Fordham University and the chair of the US-Mideast program at the Center for the Study of Genocide and Human Rights at Rutgers University.