But I Don't Speak Arabic! Teaching English in the U.A.E.

By Katie Ayers

When I graduated from International TEFL Academy's Chicago Class, I felt like it was the first time I really mastered the English language - with all of the grammar rules and new knowledge about location of letters on your tongue, I was ready. So naturally, I embarked on a journey to a country that, for lack of a better word, spun my brain around.

A Typical Weekend for an ESL Teacher in Ras al Khaimah, U.A.E.

By Katie Ayers

You’ve heard the expression, work hard - play hard. While I’ve never verbalized this as my motto for life in Ras al Khaimah, UAE, it does make a lot of sense. My weekdays are essentially non-stop work. My days at work are extremely busy, I’m constantly in motion. I try to get all of my grading and planning done at work so I do not have to take it home. Unlike my previous positions, this is actually possible if you work hard enough during school hours. After school on weekdays I prepare food and head to the gym.

Middle Eastern Meals: Dining Adventures with Katie Ayers in the U.A.E.

By Katie Ayers

When traveling, the only solidified plan I make before leaving is where to eat. My Pinterest travel board is a glorified international food board and I am constantly in search of my favorite meal to date.

One of my favorite meals happens to come from my current home. After doing extensive research on where to eat in Ras al Khaimah, trying a variety of food and compiling my top 5 must eats I’m ready to convince people to travel here based on the food alone. If I convince you, and you make your way up to the northernmost Emirate, don’t leave before you hit at least 2 of these spots.

Classrooms Around the World - Teaching English in Ras al Khaimah, U.A.E.

By Katie Ayers

In 7 years of teaching, my classroom has doubled as a hallway, has had broken windows with no AC in the middle of the summer, has contained just a white board and a few chairs, had technology available with all the supplies I need and been filled with growing minds. My physical classroom here is similar to any class setting I’ve seen in the US, just a bit newer than what I’m used to and with lesson broken desks.

Creating a Home Away from Home in Ras al Khaimah, UAE

By Katie Ayers

Upon accepting my position to teach English in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in Ras al Khaimah (RAK), I immediately acknowledged that I was one of the lucky ones. I accepted a position with a salary similar to what I made as a full-time teacher in Chicago, but with an additional perk, free housing.

Top 5 Things That Surprised Me About Living in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE

By Katie Ayers

The first thing you do when you are faced with an unknown is research. This is what we prepped for throughout our schooling and a skill we teach our students.

So, naturally, when I decided I would accept my teaching position in Ras al Khaimah (RAK), United Arab Emirates, I headed to the only legitimate place to do research, Google Images. When you type in RAK into the research guru you’re bombarded with results of beautiful resorts, water, and a fort (insert pause for you to fact check me). I, of course, checked Wikipedia, but I took very little from what I read.