Marking Important Events at Home - Majlis Ideas

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In this time of Corona, with our mosques being closed, many of us may have tuned into majlis online. However, the act of doing a majlis in your living room and with all your family members is so beautiful and powerful. It establishes the importance for our children, invites blessings into the home, and shows Allah (swt) that even during these times of hardship when masjids are closed down, we continue to keep the tradition of majlis alive. Many families at times hesitate to do this because they don’t know where to start or what to do. Here is a list of ideas that people have shared which you can do with your children!

  • The atmosphere (optional): bring in the atmosphere of a majlis by dressing in the appropriate clothes (whether black for wafat or bright for wiladat), decorating the house with balloons/lights for wiladats, spreading a white sheet, wearing ithar perfume, bringing out your alams (if you have), and keeping a small tray of fruit for nazr/niyaz. Get your kids involved in this as much as possible, e.g. have them help you in the kitchen as you cut up fruit (apples, oranges, banana etc) and tell them this is our niyaz for after the majlis in which we serve in the name of our Imam and recite surahs on it.
  • After everything is set up, call all family to sit down together.
  • Qur’an: Begin with asking your children to recite the Holy Qur’an even if it’s one of the small surahs. If one of you kids can read, have them read the translation as well.
  • Meditation: One lovely idea shared was to start off with some Muslim meditation, such as through www.muslimmeditation.net/zikr-for-kids.
  • Hadith-e-Kisa – there are different options depending on the age of your children:

Option a) Recite Hadith-e-Kisa by watching this video or sing/recite it yourself using the lyrics under the video.

Option b): There are several books on Hadith-e-Kisa book on amazon, and since it may be short notice to order, you can download the kindle version and read it by printing or on a screen. Here is one of the books.

Option c): Recite Hadith-e-Kisa in Arabic yourself or have one of the kids recite it. Or read the translation.

Option 4: Listen to Hadith-e-Kisa

  • Mystery Box: In a small box or a bag, have items related to the topic of today. Have your kids come and take out items from the bag and have them guess what today’s topic is, or if they already know who it is, have them explain how that item is related to him. If you have a younger crowd, explain to them the significance of each item.
  • Books: Read stories about the holy personality/event that you are marking.
  • Videos: Show videos on the holy personality/event that you are marking
  • Hadith: Have you children research and share hadiths on the holy personality/event that you are marking, if they are old enough. Otherwise choose one or two and explain it to them.
  • Lecture/Speech: Older children can prepare a talk, or a parent can give a small speech. You could also listen to a majlis online.
  • Other methods: Maybe the children can think of how to creatively share the information they have prepared for the occasion, such as through a puppet show, or an interactive quiz.
  • Arts and Crafts: Do an art or craft on the holy personality/event that you are marking. It could also be based on the hadith shared above. Or it could be doing some creative writing/drawing based on the lecture just heard.
  • Munajaat/Nawhas – Have children and family recite a munajaat/nawha on the occasion, whether in English or any other. Or why not ask older children to write a poem/munajaat/nawha of their own and recite that.
  • End with Ziyarah: Recite ziyarah with children. Younger children can say “Salaam alayka ya Rasoolallah and go down the list of the 14 masoomeen.
  • Recite Dua Faraj together
  • Then sit for niyaz and tea/juice. For wiladats, why not bake and decorate a cake for this occasion, then cut it just now while singing Happy Birthday to the holy personality!

* Thank you to Masooma Hydery Kalyan for compiling the original post!

7th Imam - Resources on Imam Musa Kazim (as)

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Here are some ideas in which we can mark his important day with children:

  • Create a Mystery Box:

Possible ideas of items:

  1. Black cloth – we wear black to mourn during sad occasions
  2. The # 7 – explain that he’s the 7th Imam
  3. An Angry Face – Explain how Imam Kazim (as) was the opposite of anger, but was known to be the one who swallowed his anger and was patient/calm.
  4. A map with Iraq circled – explain how he’s buried in Iraq.
  5. Picture of the harem of Imam Kazim (as) – explain how we go to Kadhmayn to do his ziyarat where he’s buried.
  6. Handcuffs/box, bicycle chain or any chain or mini cage – explain how he was put in a prison for most of his life even though he was such a good Muslim and our Imam, but the ones who made bad choices caused him to suffer.
  7. A bridge (from legos etc) – Explain how the Imam (as) was left by the bridge.
  8. Toy bread – Explain how he was given very little food while in prison.
  9. Janemaz or Du’a book: Explain how despite all the difficulties he endured, he never gave up his faith in Allah and in fact thanked Him, and continued to worship Him even in the prison.
  • Videos on the Imam:

  • Ahadith by the Imam to share with your chidlren

 * Thank you to Masooma Hydery Kalyan for compiling the original post!

Imam Ali's (as) Birthday - Ideas to mark the occasion!

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It’s the birthday of Imam Ali (pbuh)!

Below is a compilation of some ideas by amazing mums from around the world, on how you can mark it with your children/classes:

  • Play this game of Fast Feet – Race to Get the Object – ideal to be played over zoom and get children moving during lockdown!
  • Have younger children research and present one hadith by Imam Ali (as)
  • Older children can do a short skit/play on his birth/life. Here’s one example of a puppet show one mum did.
  • Have a gameshow with questions on Imam Ali (as)
  • Have a poem writing or a spoken word competition with the subject being Imam Ali (as)
  • Make Father’s Day cards with a hadith inside
  • Make bookmarks and write Ali on top and decorate them
  • Decorate cakes with Ali – this is what one community did!

  • This colouring book by Islam from the Start
  • This Nahjul Balagha Mini-Book by Towards Jannah is great to do
  • Here is a Nahjul Balagha reflection journal for older children
  • Here’s a nice craft on the titles of Imam Ali by Teaching Young Muslims
  • Read ‘The Secret Jar’ (By Kisa Kids) and then have a honey tasting session
  • This links to a story on Imam Ali’s birth in the Kaaba (slides)
  • This is a great website filled with info on the Imam
  • I love this personalised colouring sheet idea – (Child’s Name) loves Imam Ali (as)!
  • Read this jellybean poem on Imam Ali (as) and have the children colour it in, and then finish off with some jellybeans for them to eat as a wiladat treat! Alternatively, one mum used M&M’s instead:

  • Create Imam Ali (AS) bags for the less fortunate: “We first explained how Imam Ali always helped people. We then went to the store and she picked items she thought everyone would need on a daily basis – comb, toothbrush, snacks. We came home and she packed everything into ziplock bags and asked the grandparents to come home to help write Hadith from Imam Ali (as) on the hearts which we put in the bags. Inshallah we will be distributing them to the people we came across on the street.”

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  • Or why not follow in his footsteps and take some food with your children to a food bank near you. Imam used to make every effort to feed those who had no food, often giving away the little he and his family had!
  • This is a simple rhyme that goes to the tune of Barney’s I Love You song. These posters (Allah loves Imam Ali!_Rhyme) can be used alongside the relevant lines:

  • Here are some more rhymes:

Props like laminated picture of number “1”, a small cube painted like Kaaba, a toy lion from a dollar store, a ring, and the picture of a sword or a toy sword can be used when singing the rhymes, to help visual learning.

  • Mystery box: Usually used during circle time, you (or ask a child to) pull out items one by one that related to the theme or special person. As you take them out you explain the meaning or significance, and help deepen and broaden the children’s understanding of the theme or special person by attaching a visual and/tangible object to represent the different attributes of said theme/person. To make it more exciting, even with very young kids (2-5), you can put all items back in box and at the end of your session you can ask them to remember what items were in box. It’s a good way of seeing how much they picked up as well 🙂

The items mentioned above and others below can be used for the mystery box idea:

  1. No. 1 – to represent him being the first Imam
  2. A small Kaaba – to represent where he was born
  3. A toy lion – he was known as Asad-ullah
  4. A ring – for when he gave charity while in ruku
  5. A sword – to represent his sword of Zulfiqar
  6. A door – to represent Khaybar/city of knowledge
  7. A prayer mat, bread/rice – as he used to feed the poor at night
  8. A bed – as he slept in the Prophet’s bed on the night of Hijra)
  9. A spool of thread – to show how he used to mend his own clothes
  10. A pen – because he transcribed/compiled the Quran
  11. Scales – for his sense of justice
  12. A small book – to symbolise Nahjul Balagha/Dua Kumail
  13. A picture of his shrine in Najaf
  14. The letter ‘ayn’ for his name
  • This short document on Imam Ali (as) might be useful:

The Love Between Imam Ali, Allah and Rasulullah

  • Read ‘Isa Climbs Mt Mushkil’ and watch the corresponding nasheed:

A craft to go with this is making a shield with Naade Ali on it:

  • Here are some video resources on Imam Ali (as)

 

  • Here are some more nasheeds reflecting his qualities:

 

  • And here’s a movie on Imam Ali (as):

  • This is a craft one mum and daughter worked on. This is what mum said:

“FZ and I made a luminarium (paper lantern) using waxed paper that we normally use for baking, crayon shavings, oil pastels and sharpies, to celebrate the birthday of the Prince of Believers, Imam Ali as! We used a candle in a glass holder on the inside to ‘light’ it up, and the overall effect was pretty awesome. Luminarium tutorial here.

Over the past week, we had discussed various aspects of Imam Ali’s life and teachings through stories and activities…his miraculous birth, devotion to Rasulullah and Islam, steadfastness in belief, compassion and charity towards those less fortunate, love of children, and his bravery, strength and courage. To culminate our activities, we talked about Sermon 187 from Nahjul Balagha, where Imam Ali as says: ‘Amongst you, I am like a lamp in the darkness. Make your way through Life by my Light…’ (paraphrased)

FZ used sharpies and oil pastels to draw her designs onto the front and back of the luminarium. She wrote ‘Ya Ali’ on the front and the drawing on the back is ‘a beautiful palace in Jannah for the Shia of Ali as’. Insha’Allah we shall be lighting up our luminarium often as a visual reminder to always hold on to the Rope of Allah swt (Qur’an 3:103) through His Chosen Ones.

Birthday of Bibi Fatima (as) - Ideas to mark the occasion!

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It’s the birthday of Bibi Fatima (as)!

Below is a compilation of some ideas by amazing mums from around the world, on how you can mark it with your children/classes:

  • Mark it as Mother’s Day – make some cards to gift to mums *some nasheeds are shared at the end to go with Mother’s Day theme!
  • Hold a Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea in her honour, and the children get to serve their mothers
  • Have a puppet show
  • Have a Mystery Box with items representing Bibi Fatima (as):
  1. A mini Quran
  2. A mini blanket representing the story of hadith kisa
  3. A tasbeeh representing the story of when she asked the Prophet for help
  4. Bread to represent the story of how Hazrat Fatima (as) gave away her food to someone poor after a long day of fasting
  5. A doll’s dress to represent her wedding dress that she gave away
  6. A band-aid/plaster because she used to take care of the Prophet’s wounds when he was hurt by people

The impact of these mystery boxes are amazing! Here is what one mum said: “I thought my daughter Fatima wasn’t paying that much attention during the Hazrat Fatima (as) mystery box, but when I was driving back home from somewhere, the kids were hungry and the only food I had was a piece of pita bread! I passed it to Fatima and my son said I’m hungry too; Fatima passed the bread to him and goes “Mama, I shared my bread with him just like how Hazrat Fatima (as) shared her bread with the hungry ones!”

  • Craft ideas can include making tasbeehs, or decorating candles (Lady of Light), or crafts around her titles (such as Umme Abiha)
  • A lovely craft idea is a Prayer Tree, inspired by Bibi Fatima praying for all those around her (as in the story when asked by Imam Hassan (as) – related book is ‘Pray for Others’ by Kisa Kids. Each child wrote who they would make a special prayer for on a heart (leaf).

  • Here are some rhymes:

  • Start a yearly tradition:

“In anticipation of my little girl growing into a young lady quicker than I can keep up with (!), I decided to start a yearly ritual at the time of the wiladat of Sayyada Fatema Zahra (sa) in the hope that she and her friends can begin cultivating a love for the lady who will be their guide and role model through life. We kept it a small gathering this year as it was our first one. We started with a story about a Princess who makes a sacrifice to help her mother get over an illness, out of love for her. We then talked about parents, how much we love and respect them and the things we can do to show them this. We talked about how special our mothers are in particular and how the most amazing mother was Sayyada Fatema Zahra (sa) and some of her amazing qualities that we all aspire to have. We ended with learning the du’a for parents “rabbir ham huma kama rabba yaanee sagheera.”

We all then got stuck into three fun activities! Decorating cupcakes and making paper tissue flowers as special treats for the mummies and also making a du’a card to display at home reminding the girls to recite the du’a that they had learned. The girls then chatted and enjoyed some snacks before going home with their girly pink bags filled with tabarruk and their activities, to present to their mummies :)”

  • Here are some resources that might help:
  1. A book on Bibi_Fatima
  2. This awesome lesson plan on Bibi Fatima (as) (for 4-8 year olds)
  3. A workbook by QFatima on Bibi Fatima (as)
  4. A storybook by QFatima on Sura Kawthar, which includes Bibi Fatima (as)
  • Here are video lessons on Bibi Fatima (as):

  • Here are some nasheeds on Bibi Fatima (as)

Here are the lyrics!

  • Here are some mother related nasheeds!

(Warning: Ending may not be suitable for younger children so cut before then)

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