The author, Shaikh Abdullah bin Saif al Kindi, from Wilayat Nakhl, South Al Batinah Governorate, is one of the first educators who experienced the pre-Renaissance periods of education up to the mid-nineties. He was among the first generations who received education in the late sixties and early seventies.
After the age of retirement, he dedicated himself to reading, research and writing. He combined the love of knowledge with his constant keenness on reading, investigating, categorising information, research and continuous reading.
Shaikh Abdullah said that he learned the basics of reading and writing from his mother who was keen on teaching him since childhood with great interest, especially with his father’s travel to Zanzibar. He left him in Nakhl to seek knowledge at the hands of Shaikh Judge Suleiman bin Ali al Kindi, who raised him and taught him the sciences of language and religion at his home. He even accompanied him to Barzah (community gatherings at the time) and judicial sessions to learn the basics of social communication and Sharia sciences.
Shaikh Al Kindi spoke about his scientific journey, saying that after receiving the basics of jurisprudence and grammar, he moved to Nizwa, where he studied under the supervision of Shaikh Saud bin Suleiman al Kindi and Shaikh Suleiman bin Salem al Kindi, who were teachers in the Makhlid mosque in Alayah Nizwa.
He added that he had learned from Shaikh Salem bin Hamoud al Siyabi the sciences of rhetoric, as Shaikh Al Siyabi was at that time a judge and governor at the same time in Nakhl. His workplace and residence were in the Nakhl Castle. He used to walk the distance from Al Gharidh to the Nakhl Castle immediately after the Fajr prayer to learn, read books and understand issues and various kinds of sciences.
Regarding his transfer to teaching at the Saidia School in Muscat, he explained that this came upon the recommendation of Shaikh Abdulrahim bin Saif al Kharousi, who was appointed in 1954 at the Saidia School as a teacher of Islamic education.
The education in the Saidia School was a strict and intensive educational system for six semesters and stages from the first to the sixth grade. The level of students was very superior, as the scientific level taught in the sixth grade was higher than the general certificate stage currently.
He added that the school system consisted of 8 classes per day, including 6-morning classes and two evening classes, then it was later changed to 5 classes, all morning, at a rate of 45 minutes per class. Each subject is evaluated separately at a rate of 100 points per month, after which the subject is evaluated quarterly in the middle of the school year.