Teaching Your Kids About Eid/Ramadan - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 10-04-2007, 10:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, for those of you who may not be aware of it, right now is the Muslim month of Ramadan. Eid, which means celebration and marks the end of Ramadan, is scheduled to occur on October 13th.

There are a bunch of things you can do with your kids to teach them about this. Here are some ideas:

1) Moon sighting. It is officially Eid (and officially the beginning of the new Islamic month of Shawwal), when the new moon is sighted. So, you can talk about the moon, lunar months, etc.

Here are some phase of the moon craft ideas:
http://www.dltk-teach.com/rhymes/moon/mphases.htm

2) Talk about fasting...what is it.. try it for older kids. Muslims, during Ramadan, do not eat or drink from sun-up to sunset. A lot of it has to do with gratefulness... and that during the rest of the year, we take so much for granted... even water. When we break our fast, traditionally, it is done with dates. (Dates and milk are yummy, BTW.) So you can buy some dates and have your kids try them... just watch out for the seeds.

You can do a math activity by figuring out just how long a Muslim would fast on a particular day. To see the times for your area, go to islamicfinder.org and enter your zipcode.

3) Can talk about prayer. Muslims are supposed to pray five times per day. Look at the prayer times on islamic finder. Try to stop what you are doing at that time and acknowledge God or spirit in your own way, or as your religious tradition dictates. If you're not religious, try having you and your kids just stop and think of something they are grateful for... or do some deep breathing, etc. At the end of the day, or on the next day, ask them about the experience. What they liked about it... what not.

4) You can call up a local Islamic center and ask them when they are holding their next iftar. Tell them you are teaching your kids about Islam or Ramadan.. and I'm sure they'd be happy to have you. If you choose to go, the only dress code advice I would give you would be to wear long sleeves and either pants or a long skirt.

5) Ramadan is typically a month of good deeds. Many Muslims are especially focused on hunger during this month... so volunteering at a soup kitchen is popular. In Muslim countries, many wealthy people (and the not so wealthy) will set up banquets for the hungry. For those who are poor, this is often the only time they will eat meat during the year (other than the other Eid). One also has to feed a hungry person for every day one cannot fast. Perhaps your family would like to do this. Research hunger in your community. Talk about hunger and what you may want to do with it. If your family does eat meat, think about going veggie for a week or so and then eating it.

6) Some Eid recipes http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/news_and_e...ents_eid.shtml

A popular recipe is an Arabic butter cookie called Ghraybeh. It means "swoon." They are very addictive, btw. http://mideastfood.about.com/od/dess...s/r/ghrybe.htm

Another popular sweet is basboussa. http://www.wasfasahla.com/docs/recip...recipe_id=1134 The cardinal rule is whenever you use a simple syrup, to have either the simple syrup be cold and the thing you made hot... or vice versa.

More recipes... http://mideastfood.about.com/od/dess...n_Desserts.htm

For a main meal, try fattah...
http://www.wasfasahla.com/docs/recipe.cfm?recipe_id=462


7) Many Muslim kids get new clothes and shoes on Eid... as well as some money called Eidee. Ask them how this compares to their holidays. What would be good about this? What would be bad?? Would one's economic situation matter?

8) There is a great story book called "The Muslim Child" by Rukhsana Khan. I highly recommend it. For a Ramadan-specific story, "The Ramadan Adventures of Fasfoose Mouse" is great. Karen Katz just put out a book called "My First Ramadan" which is beautiful... and very well done. It mentions Eid too. There are also two other books out there that I can think of in English: "Fasting and Dates" and "Samira's First Eid." You'll probably have the most luck in finding "My First Ramadan" and "The Muslim Child" at your local library.

9) You can also have your kids try and write their name in Arabic, the language of the Qur'an. This page is one of many on the web which may help: http://arabic.speak7.com/arabic_calligraphy_images

Also, look at the Arabic numerals. The numbers we use are called Arabic numerals... can you see the similarities?? What are the differences??
Here's a chart that shows the progression http://www.skypoint.com/members/walt...OfNumerals.gif
or see this for the full-text http://www.skypoint.com/members/walt...thematics.html

Here are the modern Arabic numerals used today:
http://www.longpassages.org/images/A...sh_numbers.jpg

Hope this helps!

Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1).  "Kids do as well as they can."

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#2 of 10 Old 10-04-2007, 10:54 PM
 
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this is fantastic!
Thanks so much

Would you be ok with me reposting it to our local homeschool egroup?

Karen

Blessed partner to a great guy, and mama to 4 amazing kids. Unfortunate target of an irrationally angry IRL stalker.

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. ~ Buddha

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#3 of 10 Old 10-04-2007, 11:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post
this is fantastic!
Thanks so much

Would you be ok with me reposting it to our local homeschool egroup?

Karen
Absolutely. Feel free.

Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1).  "Kids do as well as they can."

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#4 of 10 Old 10-04-2007, 11:04 PM
 
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I am going to keep this post. This is a really cool idea. I will do this one day when I have kids. I am very excited to say that my city just got its first Mosque. I am just itching to go there. But I haven't worked up the nerve yet.
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#5 of 10 Old 10-04-2007, 11:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Another thing to think/talk about. When Muslims greet each other, they say, "Assalamu Alaikum" or "Assalamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullah wa Barakatuh." (Translation... Peace Be Upon You or May God's Peace, Blessings, and Mercy Be Upon You.) What do you think it would be like to greet everybody like that?? Would you like people wishing you peace when they first met you and said good bye?? Talk about how "good bye" evolved from "God Be With You." Which do you prefer? Try saying "peace be upon you" or "God be with you" instead of good bye to each other for a day. How does that feel?

To try some basic Arabic, go to http://www.rosettastone.com/demo-launch and choose Arabic. (of course)

If you'd like to try on a hijab, or see what it's like, try this video:
http://www.thecanadianmuslim.ca/wear_hijab_video.html


If you'd like to listen to some Qur'an recitation, try this: http://real21mt.audiovideoweb.com/ra...sufi_040514.rm It includes English translation.

Can talk about how millions of Muslims memorize the entire Qur'an... often by the time they are 12. For 80% of them, it is in a language they do not speak. For the 20% who speak Arabic, it is like memorizing something in Old English. It is roughly the size of the New Testament. Talk about what that may be like. What would be the advantages and disadvantages?? If you're Christian, can you imagine knowing the entire New Testament in its original language?

PM me any questions... or just post them and I'll try to answer.

Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1).  "Kids do as well as they can."

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#6 of 10 Old 10-04-2007, 11:37 PM
 
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Thank you so much for posting and sharing this with us!
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#7 of 10 Old 10-05-2007, 01:43 AM
 
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Thank you for posting this!

I think it would be a great idea for a sticky thread, actually-- teaching children about various religious holidays. Every Jewish child I know can tell you all about Christmas, but most Christians only know that Channukah happens in December (eeh... mostly) and that it's 8 days long. 90% of the people I know have never even heard of Ramadan, and it's a HUGE holiday in Islam.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#8 of 10 Old 10-05-2007, 04:30 AM
 
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To Umsami: What wonderful information! Thank you so much. :

Quote:
Originally Posted by eilonwy View Post
I think it would be a great idea for a sticky thread, actually-- teaching children about various religious holidays. Every Jewish child I know can tell you all about Christmas, but most Christians only know that Channukah happens in December (eeh... mostly) and that it's 8 days long. 90% of the people I know have never even heard of Ramadan, and it's a HUGE holiday in Islam.
This is an excellent idea as well. I think it would really be neat to have a thread with posts of info from a variety of different religions for kids and families.

"The true measure of a man is how he treats a man who can do him absolutely no good."
peace.gif  Embrace the learning that is happening within the things that are actually happening!    
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#9 of 10 Old 10-05-2007, 07:30 AM
 
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This is a great post. DH and my older ds attended iftaar last night at the college where my dh teaches. DS insisted that he wear desi (South Asian) clothes and he loved it. I really liked the suggestion about talking about hunger in the community. I really like the idea of posting homeschooling ideas relevant to our different faith/cultural traditions. Thanks!
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#10 of 10 Old 10-07-2007, 09:39 PM
 
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Thanks, Umsami!

Me : Erin (3½) Sara DH
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