Approaches to Learning: 2nd Grade

Approaches to Learning: 2nd Grade

IB PYP Approaches to Learning Skills


  • Listen to and follow multi-step directions
  • Listen attentively to others in the group in a variety of contexts
  • Listen to presentations/stories/movies/guest speakers, tracking the speaker
  • Express ideas and opinions clearly and logically, with guidance as needed
  • Confidently present to an audience of peers, knowing to speak clearly with appropriate volume
  • Initiates responses in complete sentences
  • Read a variety of sources for information and pleasure
  • Retell a story in detail (story elements) using transition words
  • Use text to support understanding by making predictions, conclusions, and inferences
  • Read appropriate level text with fluency, accuracy, and comprehension
  • Write an organized piece (letter, essay, narrative, report, etc.)
  • Write a summary to include main idea, supporting details and character descriptions
  • Maintain a journal or record
  • Communicate thinking through reflective writing (with or without prompts)
Non Verbal Communication
  • Observe visual cues and understands context
  • Determine the appropriate sign and symbol that communicates a desired message
  • Appropriately use body language as a means of communication
  • Read body language and expressions of others and act accordingly


Formulating Questions
  •  Learns how to ask open-ended questions about topics by brainstorming with others
  • Pose open, realistic and investigative questions
  •  Use the five senses to observe during simple experiments
  • Discuss observations during investigative experiments
  • Discuss and describe what is to be done to complete research objectives
  • Begin to identify priorities and divide assignments into simple tasks
  • Begin to set target dates for tasks
Collecting Data
  • Recognize keywords for searching books
  • Identify areas within the school library and locate resources in these areas
  • Use Destiny Quest
  • Pull facts from reliable non-fiction resources
  • Begin to browse and search on the Internet with teacher guidance
  • Understand that newspapers, databases, expert interviews and digital tools can be sources of information
  • Use dictionary skills and text features to locate information
  • Begin to skim and scan for information
Recording Data
  • Use appropriate medium to record information
  • Recall and take notes of relevant information
  • Identify the title and author of a source
Organizing Data
  • Compare and contrast information in different forms (tables, charts, timelines, graphs)
  • Begin to underline relevant information in texts
  • Begin to independently choose and use a variety of graphic organizers specific to a purpose
Interpreting Data
  • Draw conclusions based on organized data
  • Narrow or modify research focus as needed to clarify data
  • Interpret graphic organizers and make statements about them
Presenting Research Findings
  • Creatively use technology tools for presentations
  • Present information logically and clearly
  • Cooperate with peers to present work
  • Contribute to discussions
  • Show respect by listening to questions and giving logical answers


Gross motor skills
  • Move body appropriately, keeping in mind personal space
  • Use muscles when physically active, such as playing games, relays, and rhythmic movement
Fine motor skills
  • Form all letters and numbers properly and legibly
  • Hold a pencil properly
  • Manipulate handheld tools effectively (scissors, musical instruments, painting tools, technology, science equipment, etc.).
  • Manipulate a variety of drawing/painting tools to create pictures with detail
Spatial awareness
  • Demonstrate awareness of personal space and respect the personal space of others
  • Work towards creating visual information and writing that is organized, formatted and presentable
  • Retrieve and return materials independently
  • Organize and plan own tasks using appropriate materials
  • Take responsibility for personal belongings and shared classroom materials
Time management
  • Begin to set time frames for certain tasks
  • Use time effectively to complete work in a specified time
  • Adheres to all safety rules and understands the reason for the rules
  • Know where, when and how to seek assistance in dangerous situations
  • Avoid putting self and others at risk
Healthy lifestyle
  • Understand the importance of healthy eating and exercising and rest
  • Understand that health has many forms (mental, spiritual, physical, emotional, personal)
  • Making personal choices to reflect good hygiene habits
Codes of behavior
  • Understand and follow the different rules set for different situations
  • Begin to model the IB learner profile
Informed choices
  • Take appropriate action based on own understanding
  • Begin to reflect and explain personal decisions
  • Knows that all choices have positive or negative consequences


Accepting responsibility
  • Demonstrate awareness and acceptance of responsibility for work and behaviors
Respecting others
  • Understand that people can have different opinions and values
  • Display an understanding of fairness and equality
  • Take into consideration the feelings of others and act accordingly
  • Work cooperatively in any group situation
  • Share materials and take turns
Resolving conflict
  • Discuss how to solve problems with peers
  • Know when to get the teacher involved and report conflict
  • Choose appropriate behavior when solving conflicts
  • Appreciate perspective and exhibit empathy
Group decision making
  • Actively ask questions and be open to accepting others’ ideas when working in a group
  • Discuss ideas and strategies before starting
Adopting a variety of group roles
  • Take on or adapt to either a leading or a following role
  • Understand what behavior is appropriate in a given situation
  • Encourage peers during group work and cheer each other to success


Acquisition of knowledge
  • Expand vocabulary across subject areas
  • Recall and recount new knowledge
  • Retell central idea in own words
  • Understand the central ideas and lines of inquiry
  • Compare and contrast information
  • Understand purpose and criteria of an assignment
  • Explain stories, information, and events chronologically
  • Transfer new knowledge in a variety of ways
  • Use the IB PYP essential elements when discussing knowledge gained
  • See and find patterns or relationships
  • Make inferences
  • Distinguish between relevant and irrelevant information
  • Explain how specific elements can be combined to make a whole
  • Use higher-order thinking to design and create new ideas and products
  • Plan and present information in different ways
  • Make generalizations and draw conclusions
  • Begin to self-assess and set goals to move learning forward
  • Begin to accept and apply feedback given • Give peers effective feedback
  • Give personal best to inquire, act, and reflect
Dialectical thought
  • Understand that people can have different points of view
  • Listen to and appreciate other people’s point of view
  • Construct arguments for own point of view
  • Begin to self-assess own learning
  • Reflect on and correct personal abilities and progress
  • Reflect on “I used to think _____, but now I know ______”
  • Transition from “I can’t” to “how can I”s


3145 Medical Plaza Dr.,
Garland, TX 75044

(972) 675-2062

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Brighter Horizons Academy is a model educational institution that produces generations of leaders to be successful in this life and the Hereafter.


Brighter Horizons Academy aims to develop practicing Muslim leaders who are lifelong learners that serve their diverse community and global society as respectful citizens.

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Werdah Kaiser

Social Studies Teacher

Salaamualaikum! My name is Ms. Kaiser and this is my first year at Brighter Horizons Academy. I am very excited to be a part of the Social Studies department. I am originally from Northern California (go Bay Area!) and lived in Chicago before moving to Texas. I have been teaching for 7 years Alhumdulilah. I received my Bachelor's degree in Political Science and Middle East/South Asian Studies from the University of California, Davis and a Master's of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from the American College of Education. I am married Alhumdulilah and I have a 2-year old son named Hamza. In my classroom, I reinforce and value academic rigorousness, adhab and relevancy. iA I am excited for an amazing year at BHA.   


Nora Hamed

Computer Teacher

Nora Hamed is a Dallas native. She graduated from Southern Methodist University with a Bachelor of Science in Information Management Systems. Nora joined the BHA team in 2018. She is currently teaching Middle/High School Computer Technology.


Sean McMillin

Social Studies Teacher

Sean McMillin is a native of Dallas Texas. He received his BS in history from UT Tyler in 2012 and his MA from the same institution in 2015. Mr. McMillin has taught both World and U.S history at the college level for the past six years including dual credit and early college level courses for various High Schools including BHA where he is now a full time employee currently teaching World History.


Dana Haddad

English Teacher

Dana Haddad teaches 7th grade English after receiving her BA in English Literature at North Carolina State University. This is her second year at BHA and has experience teaching in multiple Islamic schools.   


Sonya Badr

Middle/High School College Guidance Counselor

What Year Started at BHA: 

M. A. in School Counseling - Xavier University 2012; Cincinnati, Ohio 
B.A. in Psychology - University of Cincinnati 2010; Cincinnati, Ohio 
Licensed School Counselor 

Current/Previous Experience
Middle/High School College Guidance Counselor 
Previous substitute teacher 
BHA Athletics Committee member 
Previous counseling and teaching experience in Ohio and Georgia 

Fresno, California

Cultural background:
Born and raised in California 
Also live in Ohio, Georgia, and now Texas

Traveling, visiting national parks & forests, taking classes in various subjects, and spending time with family.  


Mrs. Michelle Solis

Social Studies Teacher

Mrs. Michelle Solis has been an integral part of Brighter Horizons Academy since 2016. She has a Bachelor’s degree in History and is currently completing her Social Studies 4-8 Texas certification. She has numerous years of experience teaching English as a Second Language abroad and teaching Arabic and Quran to Non-native Arab speakers. She has also taught Islamic Studies from 1st to 4th grades for the past 4 years.

Mrs. Michelle has a true passion for working with young learners! Making connections and helping each child express their Muslim identities at the same time teaching them life essentials is an honor to accept daily. She strives to create an environment that nurtures growth, positivity, and learning!

“Knowledge precedes statements and actions.”


Maria Atif

Science Lab Assistant

My name is Maria Atif

I joined BHA Prep in 2019 as a Lab Coordinator. Prior to BHA Prep I worked as a dental assistant in Dental office in Mesquite TX and also severed as a Science Teacher in Pakistan. I am a graduate of Karachi University of Pakistan where I majored in Microbiology, Biochemistry and Chemistry.

I graduated in Top 10 from School Teacher's training Program in Pakistan. I was born in Pakistan and love to work with kids, my hidden skills are creative in art & craft work, science projects, school drama play.   


Sumaira Baloch

Science Teacher

6th Grade Science Teacher

Bachelor of Science degree from Karachi University

Master's in Education and Islamic History From Karachi University

Teaching at BHA since 2010


Rabia Khattak

College Guidance Counselor

Master's Degree - British Literature
Bachelor's Degree with a focus in British Literature and Islamic Jurisprudence

Current/Previous Experience
Middle/High School College Guidance Counselor

Enrollment Administrator, BHA
Case Manager - ICNA Relief Women's Transitional Home
BHA-PTO Board Member
Co-founder and current teacher/counselor: Shining Stars Afghan Refugee Children's Sunday School
Member of Board of Directors for Non-Profit Elementary Islamic School
Vice-Principal - Elementary School, VA
Librarian and Substitute teacher: Greater Lansing Islamic School, Michigan
Tutor - Michigan State University

Joined BHA:
April, 2019

Tripoli, Libya

Ethnic background:


Aimmin Chouaibi

Athletics TA

Degree of highest level of education and certification(s):
I graduated from Princeton High School as an honors grad. I currently attend Collin College to pursue business management, I also have a coaching certificate that allows me to coach any sport.

Degree earned at:
Princeton High School

Previous work experience:
I’ve worked at Polo Ralph Lauren. And I coached for my former high school team in the summer and helped with camps for the youth.

I was born in Dallas, TX

Cultural background:
I am 100% Moroccan 

Started working at BHA:
I started working at BHA around February of 2021 


Kawther Ali

Arabic Teacher

Degree of highest level of education and certification(s):
Bachelor of Science in Engineering Technology, Control and System Engineering.
Completed Online training program and obtained Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Diploma.
Completed Boston University StarTalk online and onsite training in teaching Arabic as a foreign language.

Degree earned at:
University of Technology, Baghdad, Iraq.                                                

Previous work experience:
1997 -2013 Al-Hamra Academy, Shrewsbury, MA. Arabic language and Islamic Studies Teacher
2013 -2018 ILM Academy, Houston, TX. Arabic language and Islamic Studies Teacher
2018 to Present Brighter Horizons Academy, Garland, TX. Arabic language Teacher

Started working at BHA:


Seham Hilweh

Islamic Studies/Quran Pull-Out Teacher

My name is Seham Hilweh,

I graduated from UT Arlington with an IT bachelor degree

I have a certificate in Quran Tajweed. 

I worked at Brighter Horizons in Amman Jordan for two years  

My parents are originally from Palestine, but I was born in Kuwait, moved to the U.S during the first gulf war in 1991 


Dalal Almajidi

Math Teacher

Degree of highest level of education and certification(s):
Bachelor in Liberal Arts with a Specialization in Spanish 
Minor in  Education

Degree earned at:
University of Texas at Arlington 

October 24,1978 

Cultural background:
Born in Valencia, Venezuela, and my parents are Palestinians. 

Started working at BHA:
August 2004


Rima Damrah

MS Islamic Studies/Quran Dept. Head

Degree of highest level of education: 
Bachelor’s degree in Islamic Studies 
Recitation Ijaza (Hafs ‘an Asim) 
Degree Seeking: Master’s degree in Islamic Education 

Degree earned at: 
The Guidance College Houston, TX 

Previous work experience: 
Peace Academy School 
New Iqra’ School 

Amman, Jordan 

Cultural background: 

Started working at BHA: 


Nesrine Bougattaya

Math Teacher

Ms. Nesrine Bougattaya is a Middle & High school math teacher at BHA. She joined the BHA team 5 years ago and has been teaching math & science for the past 10 years. She is currently teaching 6th Math, 7th Advanced Math, 9th Advanced Geometry, 10th Advanced Algebra 2, and 11th Advanced Pre-Calculus. 

She has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from University of Texas at Arlington. She is originally from Morocco. 


Rayda Saleh

Arabic Dept. Head

Arabic language development head, MS/HS

17 years of teaching experience 

15 years working at Brighter Horizons Academy 

Bachelors in Arabic language and literature 

IB Diploma in ( Teaching Arabic to Speaker of Other Languages) 

TASOL certification 

My philosophy :-
I believe in the extraordinary abilities of any child if s/he is properly guided


Nada Dalal

Arabic Teacher

Ms. Nada Dalal graduated with a bachelor’s degree from St. John’s University in New York in 1992. She started 16 years ago as a parent with 3 kids who attended BHA. She was a substitute teacher teaching Arabic and Islamic studies for 4 years at BHA. This year she will be teaching Arabic Emergent.


Bushra Alolofi

Arabic Teacher

Degree of highest level of education: 
Bachelor of Arts: Faculty of Science and Arts 
University of Sana’a, Sana’a – Yemen 
Major in Arabic Language and Literature 

Diploma in Elementary Education 
Salim Assubah Education Institute, Sana’a – Yemen 

Professional Teaching License 
Illinois State Board of Education 

Certificate: English Language 
Yemen-American Language Institute Sana’a – Yemen 

Extended Essay Certificate 
Pan-Asia International School, Bangkok – Thailand 

Innovative Teaching Methods in Kindergarten 
Bangkok, Thailand 

IB AB initio Certificate 
Bangkok, Thailand 

Previous work experience: 
Teacher of Arabic 
Teacher of Islamic Studies and Arabic Language 
Principal of Middle School, IB Arabic Teacher 
Principal of Kindergarten 
Counselor of Middle School, Teacher of Fine Arts 
Head Teacher of Arabic Department 

Started working at BHA:  
August 2019 


Alejandra Jirani

PE Teacher

Graduated from the University of Phoenix with a BS in Human Services Specialist. Former employee of Child Protective Services agency of the State of Texas, Department of Commerce federal former employee. Yoga Teacher Certified and wellness instructor. Developer of Yoga for runners program. Runner coach certified by RRCA. My most important role is being a mother of two wonderful sons. I am passionate about making kids move and stay active, give them the tools to develop a long lasting active lifestyle. I have coached little kids basketball and High School cross country.   


Forrest Dean Denman

PE Teacher

Home Town: Crockett, Texas

Degree: BS Kinesiology 

College: Dallas Baptist University 

Start at BHA in 2019 

African American  

I’ve been teaching PE in the Dallas area for about 20 years. 


Maria Zidan

Math Teacher

Degree of highest level of education and certification(s):
Bachelor of Science - Certified Generalist Educator (ESL) 

Degree earned at:
Texas Woman’s University  

Crystal City, TX 

Cultural background:
Mexican American  

Started working at BHA:
August 2007 


Raja Matariyeh

Arabic Teacher

Degree of highest level of education and certification(s):
M.Ed.; Certified K-12 Arabic Teaching in Illinois and Texas  

Degree earned at:
DePaul University, Chicago, IL  

Currently teaching:
MS and HS Arabic 

Amman, Jordan 

Cultural background:

Started working at BHA:
January, 2020 


Nahid Nikpour PhD

Science Teacher

Teaching 7th & 8th grade Science 

PhD in Health science from TWU, RDH, CPR Instructor 

Teaching at BHA since 2010 


Dr. Syed Abraruddin Hasan

Math Teacher

Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering from Osmania University, Hyderabad Telangana, India

Master of Mechanical Engineering with specialization in Manufacturing Engineering from Osmania University, Hyderabad Telangana, India 

Ph D in Mechanical Engineering with research in precision Engineering from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Hyderabad, Telanagana India – his research included analysis of hybrid stratified surfaces from Burnishing and shotpeening processes. 

Published / presented 10 research papers in journals and conferences 

He has 25 years of teaching experience which includes teaching Mechanical Engineering at UG level and Middle and high school. 

He served at Deccan College of Engineering and Technology for 16 years in various capacities including Lecturer, Associate Professor in Manufacturing Engineering, Professor in Mechanical Engineering, Department Chair Mechanical and Production Engineering Departments, Academic and Examinations Coordinator, joint-Editor College news letter.

He served as adjunct professor in Mechanical Engineering at UT Tyler, UNT Denton, and was awarded best professor of the year for the year 2014-2015 at UT Tyler. 

His research included a novel approach of analyzing stratified surfaces using Abbott-Firestone BAC, Taguchi S-N ratio analysis, Grey relational methods for analyzing stochastic/random processes, FFT/ DFT/Power spectra/ACVF/ACF/ other statistical moments. 

He is life-mummer of several Technical institutions and serves as the panel member for reviewing peer reviewed technical journal papers for two reviewed journals in Mechanical Engineering. 

He also served as member board of studies at Osmania University for 5 years. 

He was invited as guest speaker and chaired several conferences and National level workshops. 

He is presently teaching Algebra1 and 2, Geometry for middle and high school at BHA.


Yama Mohammad

Arabic Dept. Teacher

Mr. Mohammad started teaching at BHA in the fall semester of 2019.  He began his Arabic studies at Zaytuna Institute in 1998, now known as Zaytuna College, located in Berkeley, CA. He earned his BA and MA in Arabic from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and TESOL/TESL/TEFL Certification from Oxford Seminar.  He currently teaches HS and MS Arabic. He was raised in Fremont, CA, and moved to Texas in 2019.


Sofia Zamir

Math Dept. Head

Ms. Sofia Zamir is the Math Department Head at BHA. She joined BHA 16 years ago. Currently, she teaches AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, Pre-Calculus, Algebra 2, and UT Austin’s dual credit course “Engineer Your World.”

She has a Masters degree in Computer Science and Engineering from University of Texas at Arlington, and a Bachelors degree in Computer Engineering from NED University of Engineering and Technology, Pakistan. She has a double teacher certification (Math middle school and Math high school).

She was born in Karachi, Pakistan, and has lived in the DFW area for the past twenty six years. 


Mr. Shahma Hoda

High School Qur’aan & Islamic Studies Teacher

Degree of highest level of education:
Bachelor Degree in Islamic Law
Bachelor Degree in Sociology

Degree earned at:
Islamic University of Madina, KSA
York College, CUNY New York

Previous work experience:
Instructor - Institute of English Learning


Cultural background:

Started working at BHA:


Rumana Khan

Science Teacher

Teacher for Biology and AP Biology

Bachelor of Science degree from UH, Teaching credentials from SCU

Certified to teach 7-12 Science

Teaching at BHA since 2019

Advisor for Red Cross Club


Shamsa Ashraf

Social Studies Teacher

Shamsa Ashraf was born in Lahore, Pakistan, but moved to the United States when she was 4.

She received her Bachelor of Computer Science degree from the UT Tyler.

Because her true love was education, Shamsa went back to school and received her teaching certification.

She is certified in Generalist (Grades EC-4) and Social Studies (Grades 4-8).

Shamsa has served as the principal of a private Elementary Islamic school.

This is Shamsa's 15th year in education and her 3rd year at BHA.

Currently she is teaching US History and is the co-advisor for the Student Council.


Mrs. Rula Hasweh

MS Islamic Studies/Quran Teacher

Degree of highest level of education:
Bachelor in English Language and Literature in Arts & Science

Degree earned at:
Al-Ahliyyah Amman University
Degrees seeking - working on finishing my Masters in Islamic Education from Guidance College, Houston TX


Cultural background:

Started working at BHA:
Started volunteering and subbing 2013, started working 2014


Syeda Saleem

Computer Teacher

What Year Started at BHA

Degrees and Certifications
Bachelor Degree of Commerce 
Computer Science/Computer Programming /Database Management Systems 
Human Resource Management

Current Grades/Courses Taught
Middle and High School/Computer

Previous Work Experience
Grayson College, Ericsson, Blue Ridge Labs

Cultural Background
Living in Dallas for 21 years 


Nydia Hernandez

Social Studies Teacher

Nydia Hernandez is originally from Guatemala.  She moved to Texas 7 years ago with her family.

She has been at BHA since 2016.

Ms. Nydia holds a BA from Montclair State University in NJ.

She has Texas Certification EC-6 and Reading/Social Studies 4-8th.

She currently teaches 6th and 7th grade Social Studies.


Aisha Ashraf

Social Studies Dept. Head

Ms. Aisha was  born in Oklahoma but she grew up outside of Washington D.C. She got her bachelors in History and minor in Islamic Studies from George Mason University in Virginia. She has been teaching for 12 years and this is her 6th year at BHA. She is certified to teach Social Studies 4-8 and History 7-12. Currently she is  completing her Masters degree in Educational Administration: Curriculum and Supervision from the University of Oklahoma.  

Ms. Aisha teaches AP World History, AP US History and Civic Engagement. She is also the Student Council and National Honor Society Advisor for this year. 


Dr. Jolyn DeMeritte

Social Studies Teacher

Dr. deMeritte is an American from Key West, Florida.  She started teaching AP U.S. History at BHA in 2017.  She currently teaches World Geography and World History.  Prior to teaching at BHA, Dr. deMeritte taught at Gwinnett County Public Schools in Georgia.  She is a grandmother who likes to travel and read.  Dr. D is also the #1 fan of BHA Boys Basketball having cheered on her students since they were in 8th grade!   
Certificates held:  All fields Social Studies 8-12 and Gifted in TX and GA;  

J.D. - William Mitchell College of Law 
M.S. Education, Media Design & Technology - Full Sail University 
B.S. Business Administration - University of Phoenix 


Ayah Khalifa

English Teacher

Ayah Khalifa started at BHA in 2020. Ms. Khalifa earned a bachelor's degree in Communication Studies and is currently teaching 7th/8th grade English. She was born in Greensboro, North Carolina and her family is from Sudan.


Nahla Abdelkarim Hussein

6th Grade Quran and Islamic Teacher

Degree of highest level of education
Master Degree in Health Care Management.

Degree earned at
Walsh University , Ohio

Previous work experience
Sunday School principal in ISAK Center in Akron, Ohio


Cultural background

Started working at BHA


Qamar Madani

Science Dept. Head

Teaches Conceptual Physics, Honors Physics & Engineering 
Head of Science Department 
Bachelor of Science degree from UIC, Teaching credentials from UTD 
Certified to teach 7-12 Science 
Teaching at BHA since 2007 
Advisor for Health Professions Club & Robotics Club 


Iman Moussa

10th Grade Quran and Islamic Studies Teacher

Master Degree in Islamic studies (Candidate)
Manara Institute, 
New Jersey, USA 

Bachelor in Documents and Libraries 
Faculty of Arts, 
Alexandria University, Egypt 

Quran Hafizah 

Professional Experience
Quran and Islamic High School Teacher 
Miraj Islamic School, Staten Island, New York 

Joined BHA: 2021 


Nouhad Sahyouni

HS Qur'an & Islamic Studies Dept. Chair

Degree of highest level of education
Masters Islamic Education – The Guidance College Houston, TX

Started working at BHA
I started at BHA in 2009


Cultural background


Mohammad Alshaikh

Life Skills Coordinator

Born and raised in Chicago, Brother Mohammad Alshaikh is a Palestinian-American graduate of Qalam Insitute's five year 'Alimiyyah Program in Arlington, Texas. Br Mohammad has studied Advanced Islamic Sciences and Classical Arabic under local scholars such as Sheikh Abdulnasir Jangda and Mufti Hussain Kamani. He has served as a youth director and Islamic studies teacher at the MAS Islamic Center of Dallas and the Mesquite Islamic Center. He is a local and national khateeb and youth counselor. He is a new addition to BHA teaching a Life Skills course to all of our sixth through eleventh grade students.


Aimon Arshad

English Teacher

Mrs. Arshad teaches 6th and 7th grade English at BHA. Originally from Pakistan, Mrs. Arshad has lived in Texas for most of her life and recently moved to Dallas from Waco. She has her Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and is currently pursuing her Master's in Educational Technology.


Mayyadah Abuawad

Science Teacher

What year started at BHA 

Degrees, certifications 
Bachelor degree in Chemical Engineering / Chemical industries
Master Degree in Industrial Engineering / Operations managements
Completion courses in Biotechnology

Current grade/courses taught
10th grade- Chemistry  
AP Chem

Where were you born 

Cultural background 


Nadia Haque

Behavioral Counselor

Nadia Haque earned her bachelors from Louisiana State University in Psychology. She completed a teacher training program and obtained a certification in teaching English as a second language. She has been a teacher for the past 12 years, teaching at varying levels from elementary to university. This is her fifth year at BHA. Currently, she is working on her Masters in Mental Health Counseling from Southern Methodist University.

If you have any questions for our guidance counselor, or wish to make an appointment, you can email her at or at

Mehnaz Kafray

Middle/High School College Guidance Counselor 

What year started at BHA

Degrees, certifications
M.Ed. Educational Leadership 
B.A Secondary English Education 
Certified English Language Arts Grades 4-12 
Certified Texas Principal 

Current grade/courses taught
Elementary Grades 1-4: English and Social Studies 
Middle School: Grades 6-7 Grade Social Studies 
Middle School: Grade 8 English 
High School: Grades 9-12 English 1, English 2, American Literature, British Literature, College Guidance Advisory 
ECE Assistant Principal 
Middle/High School College Guidance Counselor 

Where were you born

Cultural background
Mother is Kenyan 
Father is Pakistani
Mehnaz was raised in America 


Jaena Holcombe

MS/HS English

Jaena Holcombe Almallah Mendez,  B.A., M.A., TX Teaching Certification English, Spanish Secondary Education, AP Certified in English Language and Literature 
8th, 9th Grade English

Proud BHA Alumni Mom and Teacher since 1992