Omawale Incorporates Health into Spanish


Photo courtesy of Malika Omawale

Omawale does yoga in front of a waterfall in Costa Rica on an international trip with students.

David Bryskin, STAFF WRITER

   New World Language teacher Malika Omawale’s dad worked in the United Nations Children Fund, and so when she was younger, her family moved around the world. She was born in Jamaica, and until high school lived in Mozambique, Thailand, Sierra Leone and Yemen. 

   Because of the Yemeni Civil War in 1994, her family was evacuated and settled down in the U.S. so Omawale could have a steady high school and college education. After getting a bachelor’s in Spanish and a master’s in education, Omawale went on to teach for 13 years, and now is at Trinity teaching Spanish II and IV.

   Moving this often could easily cause plenty of turmoil, but through every move, Omawale said she could rely on her mom, dad and older sisters to provide a shoulder to lean on.

   “I lived all over the world, so my family was the unit that I always had when we would move,” Omawale said. 

   Even now, that remains true, as family was the reason Omawale moved from Vero Beach to Orlando.

   “It’s a beautiful area, it’s just very different from here, and I really was ready to be closer to my family here,” Omawale said. 

   After her family settled down in the U.S., she still studied abroad. She spent a summer in Spain, where she stayed at the University of Salamanca. Then, she spent a semester in Mexico during her junior year of college, which is what drove her to get her degrees in Spanish and education.

    Along with her teaching, Omawale also worked for three years as an entrepreneur, health coach and certified yoga teacher. 

   Though she has not had much time to work as both recently, she tries to incorporate yoga, mindfulness and health into her classes. She believes this infusion of yoga and breathing into her class helps prevent her from pushing her students to the point where they do not feel relaxed enough to learn. 

   “Mindful stretching [and] breath-inspired stretching gets people up and moving [and] helps you wake up if you’re tired,” Omawale said. 

   Along with yoga, Mrs. Omawale also enjoys travel, even though she has not traveled recently due to the pandemic. But, she is still able to watch a good movie or show. 

   “I’ve been watching like silly ones during the pandemic just to take my mind off of … the seriousness and the gravity of the times,” Omawale said. 

   And lastly, the thing she is most excited about at Trinity is the yoga and dance program. 

   “Those are things that we didn’t have at my last school,” Omawale said. “I was the only one trying to put those things in, and they’re here already. So that really makes me happy for the students, because I think that they’re things that I wish I had learned when I was in high school.”



Article most recently updated October 25, 2021