The Maktabah: Around the Town in Sana’a

A maktabah is an office/school supply store.

 

What is a maktabah like?

Maktabahs range in size from say a small bedroom(maybe even smaller) to the giant ones like Al Jeel Al Jadeed (two locations on the diary, one of which is three stories (basement, ground floor and one other floor).

What does a maktabah offer?

Some maktabaat also sell decorations for gift bags and small, cheap gifts.

You may also find cheap toys, beauty aids, clocks, wall hangings, books, newspapers, and magazines, depending on the store.

At some of the smaller/medium maktabahs you can get copies made for around 10 riyals per page.

Some maktabahs focus more on school and office supplies while some focus more on cheap gifts and decorations.

Here are a few terms for some office/school supplies:

qalam rasaas – pencil

qalam – pen

qalam haqqa saboorah – whiteboard marker

(You will find the word haqqa used a lot here. It basically is used to say “for” or “used for.” You will also here “haqqi” for “mine, belongs to me”)

Folder: milafah

map: khareetah

clip: mishbak

pencil sharpener: bareeyah

notebook: daftar

glue: samagh

tape: lisqa 

Side note: I had self studied a little Arabic before moving abroad and on one of my first trips to a maktabah, I asked for “shareet” thinking that was like scotch tape. Shareet is like a cassette, and lisqa is adhesive tape, lol.

eraser” mimha

Board eraser: mimsahah

ruler: mistarah

copier paper, printer paper: waraq taba’ah or waraq tasweer

Insha Allah, I will try to add more items to the list.  I still don’t know what a stapler or staples is called.

 

If you are lookking for things such as paper fasteners (we called them brads when I was in school), binder clips, and bigger office supplies (laminators, etc) try a store like Al Jeel Al Jadeed.

                                               

Al Jeel Al Jadeed Website: http://aag-ye.com/en/index.aspx (It’s in English and looks way better than it had when I orginally accessed it, although it still seems under development).

Here is a list of their branches: http://aag-ye.com/en/Branches.aspx Also includes pictures of a few of the branches.

Also, you will find more American style notebooks at stores like Al Jeel Al Jadeed or even grocery stores like City Mart and some of the small baqaalahs sometimes carry school supplies. 

As of this writing, Shumaila Hari’s schol supply section is not that great, but City Mart’s is pretty good. The school supplies are upstairs at City Mart.

 

As with the itasaalat and baqaalun, maktabahs are numerous.

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