We all love the spiritual vibe that comes with Ramadan and wish for it to stay throughout the year.
Unfortunately for many households the spiritual vibe ends with the end of Ramadan. I have spoken to mums with young children who love to be glued to the television all day and they are clueless as to what kind of Islamic alternatives they should be giving to these kids without forcing them.
Seeking alternatives could be difficult if you are only looking in your comfort zone. Think outside the box, make it fun and engaging, No pain no gain right. I am a strong believer in the saying “where there is a will, there surely is a way and Allah will show it”. Try your best as a parent to nourish your little tots’ spiritual side. In my personal experience one of the major supporting factor for nurturing children is to have an Islamic environment in the house. By this I don’t mean you sit and recite Qur’an all day, although this is great. What I mean is having fun and tangible Islamic materials available in and around the house.
Below is a list of things I find very useful to have and do around the house. It is essential to have an Islamic environment around the house. Do your part and Allah will take care of the rest.
Islamic Books Read, Read and read some more and keep on reading. Your children will inherit this from you. (Monkey see monkey do, trust me). I love reading children’s books with my daughter and I am in the process of writing my own children’s story book inshaAllah.
Ramadan is a great time to introduce Islamic books to your little ones. You could get really lost in the amazing stories in the Qur’an. If you as a parent find it difficult to paraphrase these stories to your children then you will find the following book recommendations highly beneficial. Another way to teach our history to young ones is through stories and biographies of those of the past.
These books are colourful and filled with pictures. No bulky texts. I love them.
1.1. Muslim scientists
My daughter and I love all 4 books in the Muslim Scientists Series. Very well written for children, kept my then 4 year old daughter engaged cover to cover. What a beautiful way to teach our kids of our rich history of the Golden Ages. My daughter wanted to repeat these books over and over again Re-live History Through Books! Reading level : 4-7 years that doesn’t mean it is not suitable for older or younger children, many of us parents are unaware of our rich history and the chances of our kids knowing are very little. It is never too late to learn nor is it too late to teach.
These books by ‘GoodwordKidz’ are great too. The stories are beautifully depicted through colourful pictures with less text. My daughter loved looking at the pictures way before we started to actively engage in bedtime stories.
Following is a link to one of the books, by clicking on it you will be able to navigate and view many other books similar to this.:
Family and friends highly recommend this. I have yet to buy this inshaAllah. The reason I have been delaying is my daughter’s bookshelf is overflowing. This delightful hardback book contains vibrantly illustrated stories of the prophets, from Adam (A.S) to Muhammad (P.B.U.H) These stories are concise, and told in engaging, child-friendly language. A delightful question and answer session after each story is also unique in its style, depicted as a conversation between the two lovable characters. Ali pretty much asks Migo the questions that will be on your child’s mind. The list of books I can recommend requires a whole separate blog post dedicated to it.
If you or your children are not into reading as much then there are other alternatives to teach and learn Insha’Allah. You will need buckets of patience to find the most effective way of learning and teaching for your family. For my family it is through, reading Islamic as well as Non Islamic books, crafting, puzzles and fun and games. Following are a list of interesting and engaging puzzles and games (Islamic and non Islamic).
This is great fun and kept my 5 year old occupied for good 15-20mins. It’s colourful and fun
These are beautiful with vibrant and child friendly artwork.
Easy-Clean surface keeping the puzzle looking new. This puzzle game can help develop your child’s hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills.
Join the puzzles together and discover a bigger picture of all the 28 Arabic letters, your child develops concentration skills. A great way to learn about the sequence in which the Arabic Alphabet comes. They will also be learning arabic words for each letter with its English meaning.
Made to be played in the style of a traditional snap game, these cards teach and reinforce the letters of the Arabic alphabet and their letter joins. The cards can also be used as flashcards in a teaching environment. These colour coded snap cards can also be used as flashcards to teach the letters of the Arabic alphabet in their various positions.
My daughter had this when she was about 2 years old. She loved it and I have no idea of its whereabouts now.
The following are great games to bring the family together and actually interact with each other. Watching television together cannot really be called spending quality time with family. Stop deceiving yourselves and start engaging with your children from a young age.
My daughter loves this fun game as do I and keeps us occupied for about 30-40mins. I really wish I could have a nap during this time but if I don’t play with her she is going to end up in front of the screen, so no pain no gain. This game is suitable for all ages, my daughter started playing from age 4. This develops and tests your observational skills. The cards come in a metal tin, making this a perfect game whilst travelling. In Dobble, players compete with each other to find the one matching symbol between two cards. Every card is unique and has only one symbol in common with any other in the deck. The match can be difficult to spot as the size and positioning of the symbols can vary on each card. Once a player finds the match, they shout it out before the other players and taked the card.
I know we are on lockdown and we are running out of things to do with our children. As parents it is our duty to make sure they are not overdoing the screen time. This could be detrimental to their physical and mental health. I see fun and games as investment for my children and family as a whole. This cup stacking game is a great way to encourage friendly competitiveness and social interaction with your little ones. A fantastic gift for any occasion especially great for kids with unlimited screen time, without having a go at them.
This is the one I have and love hearing the Athan 5 times a day everyday in the house especially at Fajr times. This Athan clock has time for major cities around the world, 1500 cities totally for your choice, It shows current time, date, week, Daylight Saving time, temperature and Muslim lunar calendar, etc. Full screen light helps to view in the dark. Perfect for home and office. Also, a great gift for family and friends.
4.2 Al Fajr Athan Clock I have been recommended this clock by Al Fajr but at the moment I am happy with the I have. Choice is yours!
5. Make the Qur’an be heard Have you ever let the Qur’an play on the T.V only to be bugged by your children to change the channel for them to watch cartoons or have you tried playing the Qur’an on your phone and find it draining your battery? This has happened to me on numerous occasions, until my husband bought this great Qur’an speaker, I love it so much, it even comes with a remote control how handy is that. Now I can listen to it at bed time and not worry about getting up to turn it off.
5.1 Qur’an Speaker It has amazing features with Ka’ba Design, Bluetooth, Wireless Speaker with Full Quran. Recitation of 25-Qaris-and-24-Languages Bluetooth, Athan Alarm , Dua for Hajj and much more.
Having a prayer Mat dedicated to your child makes a huge impact. It shows them that you value their feelings. My daughter was excited when she got her prayer Mat as a gift from my aunty. I leave it rolled out on the floor, this way they see it everyday and I see my little ones pretending to pray at random times MashaAllah tabarakAllah.
Remember you can have all the Islamic resources in your home but if your children don’t see the parents making effort, to genuinely follow the teachings of Islam, the impact of these resources maybe little to none.
Ramadan Mubarak to everyone out there. Ramadhan could be challenging especially if you are a mother, your chores are endless leaving you drained at the end of the day. Thus giving you little to no time for your ideal Ibadah time you had planned.
Following is a list of Ibadah that could be carried out with a little bit of effort inshaAllah.
Clean slate with Allah
Clean slate with His creation
Ask others to forgive you
Set all affairs straight
No bad mouthing
Easy daily Ibadah
Salah – start perfecting the Obligatory acts. What better way to get closer to Allah than the most beloved acts to Him (fardh acts).
Designate a place for Salah
Wear your best garment
Perfect your Wudhu
Pray in Jama’ah
Reminder circles with family
Listen to your favourite Reciter
Dedicate time for translation
Reward system: Encourage family members
Family- Recite together at the same time
Listen to short reminders
Read about Ramadhan
Read as a family
Make Dua – benefit from Dua acceptance times. Do not underestimate the power of Dua. I cannot immagine mylife without Dua. (Make your own dua or use Dua book for particular Duas, link to my favourite dua book at the end of this post). *