Children in the Masjid: Making space for our future

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A lovely article which concludes with some great pratical tips at the end!

“Imagine a Masjid where the Imam pauses during Salah and the entire congregation waits so a toddler can finish his game. Imagine a Masjid where an Imam leads Salah while he holds a child in his arms. Imagine a Masjid where the cry of a baby changes the Imam’s intention and shortens the prayer for the entire congregation…”

Read the whole article here: http://www.soundvision.com/article/children-in-the-masjid-making-space-for-our-future

Willowbrook Farm - Halal Organic Farm

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Just got home a little while ago from visiting England’s first halal organic farm – Willowbrook Farm, and I just really wanted to share this with you!

It was a Madressa trip for older kids, to learn about halal organic farming, but it was open to all so we tagged along too – and are so glad we did!

We ended up learning a lot more than that:

– About Islam and the environment, and how to respect the land and how we should interact with the land and the animals that graze it.
– how all our great Prophets interacted with the land and were great shepherds
– Animal rights in Islam – how our need is not greater than their rights
– a reminder that ‘Halal’ is not only the slaughter but the love and respect given to the animal through out it’s life until its death – halal is not just a flashing sign at our local butcher!

Dr Lutfi and his wife Ruby, the founders, were very inspirational to say the least! It was amazing to meet his 3 boys Ali, Khalil and Adam who looked after us well, and to see how they were all at peace with the beautiful 33 acres of land, which was not only their home, but their life and livelihood.

The delicious fresh organic burger lunch prepared by the team was the icing on the cake!

Thank you Willowbrook Farm for an amazing spiritual and uplifting experience connecting with nature, the lands and the fresh animals, and HED SIM madressa for organising the trip!

P.S. Check out their website for upcoming events – would be a wonderful family day out. 🙂

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Fath/Victory Wall

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Have you heard of a Victory wall? It is a space you dedicate to the little everyday victories a child makes – it can be especially useful when trying to work on something in particular, such as homework or manners.

Why not call it a Fath wall, and teach then the Arabic word for victory, as well as the name of a Sura! 🙂

Islamic alternative to the tooth fairy

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Someone’s son has lost their first tooth, and she was wondering if anyone has ever done anything for that as an alternative to the tooth fairy?

Here are some replies we got on Facebook!:

“Here’s what I think I’ll do with my son when he loses his first inshallah: Instead of putting the tooth under the pillow why not put it in a little bag. In it they could write down or get an adult to write one bad thing that they are going to let go of with the old tooth. They could address it to Imam e Zamana and together you cud put it in the sea or river. In an identical bag put something they would love like candy or money or anything else and put it under their pillow with a note saying that Allah is very pleased with them and the Imam sends his love and blessings for giving up the bad habit.”

“Here’s an idea of top of head: an activity to do around demonstrating death and life. Resurrection. And tying it in with the “waiting” period of change, a gap in the mouth which the old tooth left – which may be uncomfortable and even annoying and how change isn’t always an easy process. But With death change comes resurrection/ life and a new blessing – and a new tooth. Maybe even tying the whole thing with a story of Prophet Ibrahim as and him talking to Allah SWT re resurrection and the birds. And maybe a trip to a bird watching place. And then exploring how everything comes and returns to Allah and He is In Charge of everything. For the older kids – Why not throw in a cross section of the tooth and maybe a revision of the correct way to brush teeth. And when tooth grows back instil concept of Shukr and Hamd and its opposites and the repercussions of its opposite. And now how to look after the new amaanah etc. This sounds complicated but increase degree in exploring these concepts as more teeth fall out. Ultimately this is also preparing the kids for if someone passes away later in their lives – the conversation about human death would be easier as ground work is done. Also prep work for talking about Prophet Isa and Christmas, Easter, the cross, the resurrection but also what we believe regarding him. So in line with metaphor – Allah took the tooth but will return it end of time etc. Hope these ideas give fruit to more refined ones.”

“My husband and I would talk to our kids about the concept of a tooth fairy and how it does not exist but would also give them a gift to celebrate this milestone in their life – the falling off the first tooth.”

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