"Schools enrich our culture" initiative comprises educational and interactive tours for school children around Katara to instill curiosity of discovery towards their history and cultural traditions in Qatar. There were also other interesting and diverse activities related to culture and education. This is a leading initiative through which Katara endeavors to establish the national identity among the school children; both male and female. It will also shed more light on all the aspects of our culture and traditions and try to trigger the creative abilities of children along the educational process.
The students of Qatar-Alwakra Academy were received by the initiative organizers on Katara beach, and were entertained by a series of marine cultural activities. They were able to learn more about the life of seafarers, hunting trips, and pearl diving. Other sea-related terminology, such as Dasha (start) and Gafa (end) as well as different types of pearl were introduced to school children. Other maritime artifacts and professions related to this marvelous heritage were explained to students.
An important part of the initiative was a sea cruise in a traditional pearl diving and fishing dhow that lasted for 60 minutes. Mr. Mubarak Al-Hajiri, from Katara beach management, explained to students the main parts of a dhow. He also introduced terminology used to describe sailors and their ranks, diving gear, and navigation and astronomy tools. During the trip there was a contest between the school children in which the female won. Students were also given the opportunity to steer the dhow in a bid to enhance the Qatari maritime heritage in their minds.
Similarly, there were also other cultural and educational sessions to provide students with a plethora of information and knowledge. Their questions and queries were answered, and then they were given awards and gifts.
Meanwhile, seven different entities are taking part in this initiative "Schools enrich our culture" and they are as follow: the Childhood Cultural Centre, Sout Al Khaleej, Poet Majles, Qatar Music Academy, Al Ganaas Association, Katara Beach Management, and Red Velvet Cupcake). Each entity contributes with a number of activities that introduce their mission and objectives. Katara beach management was more concerned with explaining about the maritime heritage of Qatar. The Childhood Cultural Centre provides a series of educational, cultural, and artistic sessions as well as their sessions on personal values for students from all age groups. The sessions are interactive and entertaining in nature. Qatar Music Academy will introduce the Arab and Western musical instruments that are used in the academy, the guest students will be also able to use them. In media and journalism, Sout Al Khaleej will provide hands on in the preparation and presentation of radio programmes. This is in addition to introducing the basics of radio operation and voice control. The Poet Majles will introduce the folkloric poetry in all its types and rhyme schemes to students, in addition to its implications on the society in the past and today. It will also present a group of sessions on the etiquettes of the Majles, with more focus on the old terminology and their meanings. Al Gannas Association will provide phenomenal sessions on the hunting tools and basics, falcons, and preys. There will be also sessions of the way to hold and release a falcon, erecting a traditional tent, serving Arab coffee, and setting up a fire. Finally Red Velvet Cupcake presents a workshop in garnishing cupcakes for children under 12 years old.
It is worth mentioning that schools can register through Katara website at www.katara.net