Qur'an Inspired Montessori (Ramadan 2020)
1. "We created man from the purest kind of clay.." (Al Mu'minun: 12)
Allah (God) has not only shaped us in the most beautiful manner, but He has given us life! As we learn about the creation of man, we discover how each one of us is unique! No two human beings are exactly the same! Did you know there are many other words used for clay in the Qur'an? Turaab (Dust), Teen (Clay), Salsaal (Dried mud) and Fakhkaar (potters clay)!
We had a little fun with some sensory play today. After discussing Allah's ability to create each one of us differently, Yaseen had a go at moulding himself out of play dough and nature finds.
2. “…He makes the night to go in the day and makes the day to go in the night. And He has sujected the sun and the moon. Each running (on a fixed course) for an appointed term…” (Az Zumar: 5)
Two questions Yaseen always asks me; where does the sun go at night? and why does the moon keep following us? As a child I used to think the moon was following me too! 😂 This activity explains day and night. As the earth rotates on its imaginary line called its axis, different parts of earth is either faced towards the sun or away from it, giving day and night. The sun doesn't actually move. It appears so because Earth is spinning slowly all the time, giving the sun different position in the sky. Click on the picture to view the video.
3. "If you are grateful, I will increase you in favour." (Ibrahim :17)
This lockdown has me pondering about the things we take for granted. I created these Shukr stars with a prompt guide so we can show a little more gratitude, especially during this month. The Shukr stars will help us: spend more time together as a family, remind each other of our blessings and show gratitude to Allah (God) in our daily actions. Each night we all pick one star and take it in turns to find the matching colour and follow the prompt. Yaseen's task was to choose the colours and paint. I'm hoping by doing this activity daily, we will all become more grateful in everything Allah's given us.
4. "Allah is the creator of all things and He is the wakil (trustee, disposer of affairs) over all things." (Az Zumar: 62)
Being able to witness everything that Allah (God) has created is itself a blessing. The colours, smell and oh the textures! We went on a nature hunt to find some things Allah has created. Flowers, sticks, bark, leaves, feathers and seed pods. We made this 'Allah Made it All' activity out of cardboard, pegs and print outs. Yaseen helped by choosing the photos, cutting and gluing. This was actually quiet fun! I'll be making a 'colour find' version for my toddler!
5. "It is He who created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon, all (the celestial bodies) swim along, each in its orbit." (Al-Anbiya: 33)
As Muslims, we follow the lunar calendar, which is based on the movement of the moon. A new moon means a new month. We're learning about the 8 phases of the moon today and how they appear in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. The moon looks like it's changing shape as it orbits the Earth, but it's always spherical! We actually happen to see the part of the moon that's pointing towards the sun and reflecting sunlight.
6. "And of His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth and the diversity of your languages and your colours. Indeed in that are signs for those of knowledge." (Ar Rum: 22)
G'day/Salam from Australia! We're learning how to say Hello in different languages! Did you know there are over 7000 different languages spoken around the world!! Yaseen's task was to match each flag with its country using the Atlas. Then together we learnt how to say hello in Japanese, Egyptian, Turkish, Maori, Australian, Lebanese, Italian, Greek and Indonesian. (He managed to remember 4!).
I went on to show him how some cultures greet each other; Maori people greet by pressing 2 noses together and the Japanese have their traditional bow.
7. "So which of the favours of your lord would you deny." (Ar Rahman: 28)
How often do we take our blessings for granted? Too often right? For this work, I asked Yaseen to think about things he can not live without. He loves sneaking around taking my phone to take snap shots of random things! So I worked with this. I taught him how to use the camera with focus. He managed to photograph his blessings (however, the files were too big to send to my laptop).
Plan B: We ended up searching the net for his blessings. His task was to type, find his images and help me print. Yaseen went out to pick some vines from the yard. With some twine, mini pegs and a hoop we came up with his 'Blessing Ring!'. Now everytime he sees this he can remember his blessings!
8. “So whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it.” (Az Zalzalah: 7)
No act is too small in the sight of Allah (God), even if it's a smile to your child. We're trying to teach Yaseen that every small good deed we do we get huge rewards. Even if no one sees it, Allah sees it all!
Here we're teaching him that by feeding an animal, and making the most out of the things we have is rewarding. We decided to create a bird feeder using a left over coconut shell. It's crow season so we've only ever seen crows near it 😔 but that's ok, it's also teaching us patience! View the tutorial HERE
9. “And your Lord inspired the bee, saying: “Take you habitations in the mountains and in the trees and in what they erect. Then, eat of all fruits, and follow the ways of your Lord made easy for you". There comes forth from their bellies, a drink of varying colour wherein is healing for men. Verily, in this is indeed a sign for people who think.” (Al Nahl : 68-69)The bee is truly a fascinating insect! Before we started this work we read 'The Bee Book' by @charlottemilnerillustration. We continued learning about the Honey bees anatomy through a DIY 2 layer puzzle. After Yaseen labelled parts of the bee, I explained how Allah created honey bees with 2 stomachs, one for eating and the other special stomach to store collected nectar. I then when on to explain how the bees regurgitate the processed nectar into the honeycomb cells. Allah goes on to say that honey comes in various colours, and we see this by the range of beautiful flowers the bees collect the nectar from.
10. “O children of Adam! Dress cleanly and beautifully for every act of worship; and eat and drink, but do not be wasteful: indeed, He does not love the wasteful. " (Al A’raf :31)
We're trying to live a moderate life creating less waste and being mindful of our purchases. Focusing on the latter half of this ayah (verse), Yaseen and I had a discussion about the less fortunate, the environment and the pollution around us.
Our recycling bins came out to play again. We used Coles minis and magazine cut outs to teach the importance of recycling, composting and wastage through sorting.
11. “And we sent down water from the sky in proper quantity, and settled it in the ground…” (Al Mu'minun: 18)
It's amazing how water is continually recycled in a system known as the water cycle. Water is something so valuable and occasionally taken for granted. I introduced Yaseen to the water cycle through a diy puzzle and @dkbooks Science Book. With this work we also discussed the importance of water in our daily lives and ways to save water around our home. We are so blessed to have clean water running from a tap!
I got Yaseen thinking about how he would use a bucket of water if he had to walk a certain distance to collect, (just like other children around the world). It's something we should all think about really! I explained to him how our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) only used a 'mudd' of water to make ablution (around 250mls). I really cannot wait to extend on this Water topic. There is so much to learn and explore, especially when it comes to our religion
Yaseen's eyes light up every time I get my sewing box out! It's a new thing his shown interest in. I offered him a hoop and thread and after a few attempts of showing him how it's done, he was in full focus mode! He managed to do 90%
My son's a visual learner, so I discussed this ayah (verse) with reference to one of my water plants (roots can be seen through the vase). Allah (God) has stabilised the earth by placing firm mountains. The roots of these mountains beneath the surface are several times deeper than the height of what appears above the surface, just like the long roots of our plant.
He really enjoyed embroidering. This was a trial and error for us as we've neither attempted this before.
13. ’And we created you in pairs.’ (An Naba: 8)
Something for my toddler today - lid matching! A simple activity you can create in less than a minute! I used things around the home. The idea is to not only match them correctly but to also learn visual discrimination.
When Allah (God) speaks about pairs, it's more than just a pair of a male and female. It's also things that have a counterpart to them.
14. “He is the one who has set free the two kinds of water, one sweet and palatable, and the other salty and bitter, and He has made between them a barrier and a forbidding partition.” (Al Furqan: 53)
I'm always amazed by this ayah (verse). Yaseen worked on his taste sense today. He measured, poured and mixed to create a glass of salty water and a glass of sweet water. I went on to explain how Allah (God) created an ocean that has 2 types of tastes similar to these.
Did you know? A French Marine scientist Captian Jacques Cousteau, famous for his underwater research, explains how the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, which merge at the straight of Gibraltar, are supposed to be equal in salinity, density and life forms. However, he came to a conclusion that these seas have a 'great water curtin' at the merging point that did not allow two seas to mix up. Because of this, he later accepted Islam believing it's the true word from Allah!
15. “Do you not see that Allah sends down rain from the sky, and we produce thereby fruits of varying colours?" (Al Fatir: 27)
Fruits are our favourite! In order to explain this ayah (verse) we visited our local market. They usually have all sorts of fruits, so Yaseen had fun choosing the most colourful. We have Dragonfruit, Coconut, Mangosteen, Rockmelon, Avocado. His work was to match the fruits with the coloured tablets and pronounce the colours in Arabic and Indonesian.
16. “Seek help through patience and prayer…” (Al Baqarah: 45)
No matter what difficult situation you're in, turn to Allah (God) for assistance (while remaining in a state of patience). Yaseen's doing some practical work; learning how to hand stitch. Together, we made little prayer mats for our small world play. How cute do they look?!
17. ‘And those who feared their Lord will be led to the Garden in crowds, until behold, they arrive there; its gates will be opened; & its keepers will say: "Peace be upon you! You have done well! Enter here, to dwell therein.”’ (Az Zumar: 73)
As a child we rarely heard about the delights of Jannah (Paradise) . We're taking a different approach with our children. Jannah is something we work hard for and want our children to yearn for. I thought the best work for the ayah (verse) would be to discuss the different doors of Jannah and what needs to be done to enter them.
I created this 'Doors of Jannah' board and 3 part cards to assist with Yaseen's learning (can you tell I have a thing for cardboard?!). Open the doors and you'll find a picture of what each door represents. He absolutely loves this board! .
Through storytelling (based on Qur'an and Hadith) and crafts we can empower our children to strive much more to earn their position in Jannah.
18. "And We have placed within the heaven great stars & have beautified it for the observers." (Al Hijr: 16)
19. ‘Recite in the name of your Lord who created.’ (Al Alaq: 1)
20. 'And We have enjoined upon man goodness to parents...' (Al Ankabut: 8)
If you'd like to follow us along this year (2021) please follow us @brb_raisingkids for updates.