Learn to Live or Live to Learn? Fez Student Voice


Learn to Live or Live to Learn? by Soukaina Loudghiri in Intermediate 6

For ages, the binary question of life has been asked more and more, “Do you live to work or work to live”? Do you live to eat or eat to live? And so on. Such existen- tial questions have become recurrent in my mind so much that I question myself as a student, and what I’m doing with my stud- ies. Am I living to learn or learning to live?

Since birth, our parents have been teaching us how to eat, walk, talk; and later, how to study and learn. They have been concerned with preparing us for sur- vival, which we question by learning many things.

Here I feel that, without learning, it’s impossible to lead a decent and peaceful life. I mean that education distinguishes us as humans and prepares us, the next genera- tion, for civilization. In this sense, I can’t have a good job or a good living if I’m not well-educated or have good qualifications.

We see people now burning themselves or sacrificing their lives for not getting jobs, especially those with higher education di- plomas. However, to what extent are we going to relate our studies to making a liv- ing? Don’t we see students who learn for their diplomas, but forget what they have learned by the time they get a job?

In fact, it’s high time we changed our view of studying and engage in life-long learning that can help us and our world. It’s so selfish of us to study, graduate, work, and start looking for money, forgetting the rea- son behind education and why we are here on this earth.

Also, if we believe in living to learn, we will love what we do, we will excel, and we can get the best posts—jobs and posi- tions with passion, and not just for personal needs or greed, all in the pursuit of happi- ness. It depends on how we see our lives, and how much we learn, to help not only ourselves, but also others.

Click here to read the rest of the edition of this month Student Voice March/April 2015

What Is Beauty? Fez Student Voice

What Is Beauty? By Mustafa El Makrani in Advanced 2

There are over 7 billion people on the planet. That is over 7 billion pair of eyes. Each pair is watching the world in a different and unique way.
What are we seeing then? Are the eyes our only window into life, into beauty?
In a book called The Prophet, written by Khalil Gibran, the main character, Al Mustafa, was asked by a poet to speak of beauty. He responded, “It is not the image you would see, nor the song you would hear. But rather an image you see though you close your eyes, and a song you hear though you shut your ears.”
Make a connection—we don’t actually need to see things with our eyes. Sometimes we can feel beauty, community, and family attachments.
The distinctive way each one of us perceives the world makes it almost impossible to conceive of an example worthy of modeling, makes it almost impossible to create what could be called The Ultimate Guidebook to a beautiful journey on earth.
There are a lot of factors that interact with each other to make up one’s lifetime. In that lifetime, numerous feelings and experiences are encountered, and depending on how they are understood, one’s identity is shaped.
I am not going to write about philosophy, yet I would like to share the view from my window.
Although our perceptions are different, we kind of agree that, first, life is not as easy as it looks; and second, beauty is out there alongside hideousness, sometimes in the same place and at the same time. It depends on what we do choose to see.
With that in mind, can we boldly say that everyone is responsible for his happiness and sorrow as well? I think we can, only if this responsibility is combined with a conscious acceptance of the inevitable.
With this kind of quality, the enigmatic smile of the Mona Lisa will still look beautiful, even if the woman in the portrait was weirdly facing forward.
Our life span is negligible compared to the universe’s. We are going to miss out on a lot of things. But let’s not get all FOMO, consumed by a Fear Of Missing Out. There are a lot of things to enjoy since we don’t have the luxury of time to spend on grieving.
Beauty is out there, in the rising smell of the first raindrops when they hit dry dirt, or the sound of a squealing guitar. It can be found in a moment of joy and laughter spent with loved ones, and even in a random smile just barely spotted on a face in the crowd.
Keep in mind that photons travel millions of light years to intersect with planet Earth’s trajectory. Let’s absorb those photons through our retinas and enjoy the view.

Click here to read the rest of the edition of this month Student Voice January/February 2015

How to Reform Moroccan Education! Fez Student Voice


How to Reform Moroccan Education by Naima El Yaakoubi in Advanced 1

As we all know, the educational system is something that our society is based on, especially when it comes to academic education, which is very significant and influential. Hard work, communicating, learning, and studying: these are parts of education that should be linked and connected for students to have meaningful and successful lives.
But, unfortunately, not all the countries in the world are providing an efficient educational system. Morocco is one of those that suffers a lot from its awkward methods and bad structure, which hinder its progress.
So, what are the major issues from which students are suffering? And what can be done to improve our Moroccan educational system?
The first thing is overcrowded classrooms. I wonder how people can concentrate on what the teacher is talking about. For example, if you go to public schools, you find 40 or even 50 students studying in the same classroom. How can you expect student feedback?
There is another problem that the educational system is facing: policy makers have to focus on the way books are designed and written, and relate the content of these books to real life situations to create self- reliant students.
For instance,a quick look at Moroccan textbooks shows that the contents and most of the pictures are taken from Western cultures. That’s to say, our books should have practical parts that can help students sharpen their personalities and gain more experience.
Moreover, since we are living in a world that relies on Information Communication Technology (ICT), our schools and universities should be well-equipped with technological tools, such as projectors, laptops, and cameras. Nowadays, Moroccan students are becoming digital learners, so teachers and students should be trained in ICT in order to facilitate learning and make it much easier.
As far as I’m concerned, the most important thing we need in our educational system is mutual respect between students and teachers; in this way, discipline will be established and authority will be respected.
To sum up, I hope that the Moroccan educational system will improve as soon as possible. As we say, “where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

Click here to read the rest of the edition of this month Student Voice December 2014

The Big Question! Fez Student Voice

Introducing a new, recurrent feature. The ALC Journalism Club asks ALC teachers and students the same question.
What’s the most significant (English-language) book you’ve ever read?


Samia Arihane Intermediate 5

Omaima Loukili Advanced 4

Mrs. Kaoutar Bakhchane, English teacher :
“The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas. It was a bilingual edition, so it helped me when I was really struggling with my English.”

Mr. Rida Bernouss, English teacher :
“How to Make Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. It was a best-seller. I read it a long time ago and it was simple and insightful.”

Mr. Mitch Virchick, English teacher :
“V by Thomas Pynchon. I read it when I was about 20. It brought together so many of the strange bits of knowledge that I had learned growing up. Until then it all seemed like isolated things with no connection to my life. Reading the book allowed me to understand that all these things were connected to my life and the way I saw the world. We are the sum total of what we know. It was the first serious novel I think I had read.”

Click here to read the rest of the edition of this month Student Voice November 2014