Thursday, January 29, 2009

My Teenage boys and Dubai

Soon it will be a decade of living in this part of the world. Time does fly when we look back and reflect on life. Alhamdulillah, so far, our boys have been wonderful. They are excellent in academic and active in co-curriculum activities.

Saifullah is the school's head boy, Faidhi is the house captain and Muhaimin is aiming to follow suit. Saifullah is ready to leave the nest to venture into college life, away from home in Dubai.

The boys have their own separate after school activities. We do allow them to hang out with (school, Malaysian or other) friends now and then. They go camping and participate in outdoor activities. Even Faidhi was starring in school theatres and video clip production, beside three of them representing school's footbal teams as well as donning Malaysia in Dubai jersey team.

Friday morning is for Malaysian sport.
An article below on frustrated teens in Dubai.
Teenage kicks

The 7DAYS letters page has recently been filled with comments from frustrated teens saying there is nothing for them to do in this city.

It’s true, the weather in this part of the world does prohibit a lot of outdoor activity for at least three months of the year, sports can be expensive, and transport to and from clubs, friend’s houses, events and malls is more than likely reliant on parents - how uncool!

But if you dig deep and look further than the usual mall outings and bowling alleys, there is in fact, plenty for teens to do in Dubai. All it takes is a little imagination.

Here are some suggestions to banish boredom:
Climb a wall

If having nothing to do quite literally has you climbing the walls, then why not take advantage of this talent and head down to the E-Sports Climbing Academy or the Pharaoh’s Club at Wafi to perfect the art of scaling heights. Both venues have professional climbing walls and expert instructors to show you the ropes, and of course the foot-holes.

Become an eBay whizz kid

Parents are always complaining that they don’t understand computers yet the younger generation are internet experts.

So, get to grips with eBay; make a fortune for your parents and demand your own cut of the profits!

If you manage to make dhs100 for a pair of your mum’s old shoes or flog your dad’s old magazine collection (with permission of course) you’re bound to score points with the folks and collect a tidy sum.

Make the most of the nice weatherIt’s going to be too hot to enjoy outdoor activities soon, so why not get some air in your lungs now?

Ask your parents if they’ll be able to pay for you to go wakeboarding or horseriding. But if money is tight at the moment, get some friends together and play tennis or football on the beach. We live so close to beautiful beaches, but often take them for granted, so celebrate the cooler climate and make the most of the outdoor life.
In this multicultural city, being able to speak a new language would be really handy. If you’re an expat teenager, why not learn Arabic and impress your local friends. The Eton Institute of Languages down at Knowledge Village has dozens of courses from Farsi to Italian and they even do online courses so you could do it all from the comfort of your bedroom.

Dramatic tendencies
If you can entertain your friends without even breaking a sweat, then you could be a born actor. Why not put your skills to good use and start attending drama classes? Drama Dubai runs workshops for all ages and abilities to teach everything from method acting to stage fighting and circus skills.

Do some charity work
Doing something for others or ‘giving back’ as they say gives people a real sense of satisfaction. And if you’re thinking, ‘why would I give up my precious free time’, well charity work doesn’t have to be a chore. If you like animals you could volunteer at an animal sanctuary like Feline Friends or, if you’re creative, put your skills to good use by selling your cool crafts and donating the money to a charity of your choice.

Al Noor Training Centre for Children with Special Needs takes on young people over the age of 16 to assist and help the children at the centre. The volunteers work from 8am to 1pm so maybe you could put a day off school to good use by signing up for a few hours on a Friday.

Older teens should also note that listing volunteer work on your CV gives you an added advantage when future employees are looking to recruit.

If you and your friends are really bored, why not set up a business doing odd jobs? From washing cars to babysitting or maybe even just doing some dusting (essential in Dubai), if you work out a rate for each job it could be a nice little earner. If you’re a real entrepreneur you could design flyers or set up your own web site to advertise your service.

Every teen wants to be a rock star, so what’s stopping you? Any spare time can be put to great use by starting a garage band. Find a singer, guitarist, drummer and bassist and get practicing in any available space - at home or at school. Music and lyrics can be found online, and if you get really good, you might even find an opportunity to play at one of Dubai’s many live music nights.
Get fit and sample army life by going along to a Fitness 02 bootcamp. They’re gruelling, but lots of fun.
Just started this week is a special ‘Young Gun’ session for teenagers on Mondays from 4.30pm to 5.30pm down at Safa Park.

Get on the ball
The Barclays International Football Academy is the UAE’s largest football school and the coaches are all English FA qualified. They take on teenagers up to age the age of 16. For information go to
Teens of all ages can join the youth team with Dubai Amateur Football League.

1 comment:

LaMujerBonita said...

Thank you for the info. alhamdulillah and nice to hear about your family especially your boys.