This year, most parents are not only grappling with the very real and overwhelming challenge of keeping their kids safe, entertained, and educated all in seclusion, but they are also trying to figure out how to make Ramadan special without the community, friends, and iftars that are so central to the celebration.
So what are parents to do?
Here are five ways to make Ramadan special for your kids in this difficult time.
Beautifying your home is the first step in preparing for the holy month, which we should consider as a symbol of Allah (شَعَائِرَ اللَّـهِ). Children are very perceptive to changes in their normal environment. Using Ramadan decorations whether purchased or home-made is a great way to reinforce observance of Ramadan for your little ones.
وَمَن يُعَظِّمْ شَعَائِرَ اللَّـهِ فَإِنَّهَا مِن تَقْوَى الْقُلُوبِ
And whoever honors the symbols of Allah – indeed, it is from the piety of hearts. Quran 22:31
Daily activities help kids feel the spirit of Ramadan creating new routines for them so they are not distanced from the experience of Ramadan. Rafiq & Friends’ The Ramadan Date Palm has a month-long set of activities designed to make Ramadan a festive time in the home and give children engaging and fun lessons on the blessings of Ramadan. With the simple model of “faith starts at home,” the creators of Rafiq & Friends focused on allowing children to be active participants of Ramadan by creating a date serving plate so kids could help family members break fast every night.
Whoever helps break the fast of a fasting person, he will have the same reward as him without decreasing anything from the reward of the fasting person.
Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 807
Each set of Rafiq & Friends: The Ramadan Date Palm comes with a beautifully hand illustrated children’s book, a Rafiq plush toy, 35 activity cards, one for each night of Ramadan/Eid and some in preparation for the first day. Parents also gain exclusive access to on-line activities and crafts that engage them in Ramadan fun all month long.
Jamaat prayer with the family as trips to the masjid won’t be possible. This is a good time to put our own homes in order in having daily jamaat prayer with our children at home. For small children this can be difficult but building the routine can be made fun if done correctly. Children love autonomy and routine so try to give children the task of setting up prayer rugs, helping to make the azan and making dua after salat. Here is a DIY model of a home masjid for children.
For older children, holding a short discussion or Islamic reminder is a good way to build knowledge as well as to create a welcoming environment to ask questions.
Virtual iftars are a great way to connect with other friends and families, making them even more special if you come up with some activities to go along with it. For example, grandparents can read a book to their grandchildren or the families can play a game of charades. Younger kids can put on puppet shows for their friends. Just because we aren’t breaking bread together doesn’t mean we can’t still connect.
Reciting Quran as a family is a way to cultivate a good relationship with our holy book. Try sitting in a circle and having children take turns reading ayahs or reading the translation after the Arabic is recited. Making kids active participants rather than just bystanders will help them learn and feel valued.
We pray that you and your family have a blessed Ramadan this year despite the quarantine.
Justin Mashouf is a filmmaker and artist based in Los Angeles. His award winning film “The Honest Struggle” tells the story of an ex-gang chief turned devout Muslim reentering society after 24 years in prison. Justin received his BFA in Media Arts from the University of Arizona in 2008. His work editing specials for local Los Angeles news channel KTLA 5, has earned him 4 Los Angeles Emmy Awards, a Golden Mic Award, and Southern California Journalism Award.
The post Ramadan In Quarantine: 5 Ways For Kids To Celebrate At Home appeared first on MuslimMatters.org.
Source: Muslim Matters