How does the APH teaching philosophy look in your classroom?
Young children are fascinated by the natural world but often lose this passion as they get older. My goal is to spark the love of nature, curiosity in the diversity of life forms and the desire to understand the world around them. I hope to achieve this by hands-on investigations in and outside the classroom as well more traditional labs and experiments to enhance the course material. I positively encourage students in my class to share what they are interested in so that I can include certain topics and activities into our studies, thereby increasing their desire to learn.
What excites you about The Academy at Penguin Hall?
I am a lifelong learner and welcome the opportunity to learn, experiment and discover with the students in a small classroom setting. I have numerous contacts with organizations and researchers from my previous employment and interests and am excited to be able to utilize them in my teaching at APH.
I am also thrilled to be teaching in such a beautiful location, set in the woods surrounded by nature, an environment that I will encourage my students to appreciate, explore and learn about.
Share something interesting about yourself.
I love the outdoors and the variety of activities open to us in this seasonal climate. Nothing gives me more pleasure than canoeing or swimming in Chebacco lake on a warm summers day as the sun goes down, or biking in the woods around Gordon college. I have a family and two cats to look after and they join me on my adventures (not the cats, they just sleep all day!). Leaving Iraq, my country of birth, at an early age has left a deep impression on me, and an appreciation of the freedoms and opportunities I have to explore and learn about the natural world. I hope to bring this wonderment and awe into my classroom.
Dr. Reya Al-Khalili has a B.Sc. in Biology from DeMontfort University, an M.Sc. in Water Pollution Control and a Ph.D. in Water Treatment Technologies for Developing Countries from Leicester University in the UK. She worked as a water treatment specialist at Ionics Inc. and more recently taught Biology at Endicott College in Beverly and worked as an environmental educator at Salem Sound Coastwatch, a small environmental non-profit based in the north shore.