Prophet Ibrahim’s Footprints

When Prophet Ibrahim (AS) and his son Prophet Isma’il (AS) were building the Holy Kabah, he stood on a rock to aid him in the construction. It is known as Maqam-e-Ibrahim and it still holds his footprints to this day.

To discuss Maqam-e-Ibrahim, we used Play Doh. We rolled it out, then I had my daughter step on it to leave her footprints. We discussed how Prophet Ibrahim (AS) left his footprints near the Holy Kabah, and we can still see those footprints.

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To take it one step further, you can try to leave footprints on a rock. We would not be able to leave our footprints in the rock. We can only leave our footprints on something soft like Play Doh. In this way, we can discuss the miraculous nature of the fact that Prophet Ibrahim (AS) left his footprints in the rock.

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Holy Kabah Model

After being inspired by Oh Happy Day to create a crescent pinata for Eid-ul-Fitr, I loved the method so much that I decided to make something for Zil Hajj and Eid-ul-Adha too!

I decided to make a mini-Holy Kabah for our decorations this year using the method for the piñatas. However, I couldn’t quite imagine treating it like a piñata, filling it with candy and breaking it apart for joy, so I decided to use it as a model to discuss our activities for this month and as a decoration piece. (Which is perfect, because I loved the crescent so much that I left it up on the highest shelf even after it was ripped apart for the candy. This way, I don’t have to keep the pieces – I can keep it whole, for as long as I like!)

 

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To assemble, I first set up the four sides of the Kabah, and secured them with tape. I then covered the top and the sides with black tissue paper. For the piñata effect, I used strips of black tissue paper, and cut a fringe on one side. I started gluing the fringe up each wall, starting at the bottom. After all the sides were covered with fringes, I wrapped a golden ribbon around towards the top of the model. Ta-da!

One thing that I learned from the crescent was that the cardboard box I used was WAY too thick. It took forever to cut, and our hands were hurting until the next day. This time, I used much thinner cardboard, which was easier to cut and easier to assemble.

Another thing that I learned from the crescent was that having a background of the same color made it a lot easier when adding the fringe, because this way, the fringe doesn’t have to be perfect. So I made sure to wrap my cardboard Holy Kabah with black tissue paper before adding the fringe.

Gluing the fringe is a bit time-consuming, but easy. It’s something that I did while sitting in front of the TV. (My daughter is way too young to be patient enough to help me with something like this – this was a project I chose to do after she was asleep. Older kids would probably be a big help though, especially with cutting the fringe.)

This was SO much easier than last year’s model of the Holy Kabah, for which I used slippery plastic. Never again!

What other methods have you all used to create models of the Holy Kabah? Let me know in the comments section below or by sending me a message!

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The Story of Abraha and the Army of Elephants

When I told my daughter the story of Abraha and the elephants that tried to attack the Holy Kabah, my daughter was enthralled. She retold the story many times in the following days, as she was processing and learning.

When I told her this story, we first went through the story, discussing what happened. After that, she retold the story to me in her own words, explaining what she had understood to me in her own words.

[For a detailed version of the story, you can go here. For my purposes, I told my daughter a very simplified version of the story.]

I wanted to make the story come alive for her, so we used PlayDoh and mini cookie cutters to create the story visually. We made a cube to represent the Holy Kabah, and then used a different color to cut out the elephants that were headed towards the Holy Kabah. Allah (SWT) sent birds to defend against the army, so we used our bird cookie cutter to cut out birds in a different color. We then rolled up tiny “stones” that the birds dropped on the elephants.

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After all the elements were ready, I arranged the PlayDoh creations as a cohesive visual, then I asked my daughter to explain to me what was happening in our picture. She could explain to me that the “bad person” and the elephants were going to try to break the Holy Kabah, but Allah (SWT) was protecting it. Allah (SWT) sent birds with rocks to stop the elephants.

[We did this activity about two months ago, and she still remembers over half the story with no repetition from me since then. When I showed her this picture, she could tell me some of the basic elements of the story. She didn’t remember the name of the “bad person” but she remembered that the elephants were headed to the Holy Kabah to try to break it, and that the birds had rocks in the mouth that they dropped in attack. She did forget that the birds were sent by Allah (SWT) to destroy the elephant army and protect the Holy Kabah, but at her age and the time it has been since we did this activity, I’m impressed by her memory! MashaAllah!]

How have you made historical stories come alive? I’d love to hear – let me know by leaving a comment below or sending me a message!

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Qiblah String

To explore the concept of Qiblah, we discussed how we stand in a specific direction while we pray. We stand with our face toward the Holy Kabah, rather than with our back or side to the Holy Kabah. We talked about how if we stand facing the Kabah, we are standing in a way that if we walked straight, straight, and more straight, we would reach the Holy Kabah right in front of us. If we stood in the wrong direction, we would not be able to find the Holy Kabah.

After that, I introduced the string. The string represents an imaginary string that extends all the way from the Holy Kabah all the way to each of our homes. Whenever we pray facing the Qiblah, we have our own personal string connecting each and every one of us to the Holy Kabah.

What an compelling visual that is to imagine: the Holy Kabah in the middle, with millions of strings extending from there to each of our homes, connecting us all to Allah (SWT), every time we pray.

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For our activity, I taped a piece of string to the wall, representing our connection to the Holy Kabah and Allah (SWT). When we are standing facing the Qiblah, we can hold the string to remind ourselves that whenever we pray, we are standing in front of the Holy Kabah, in front of Allah (SWT), along with millions of Muslims throughout the world.

[Click here to find another activity about the Qiblah – using a map!]

I hope you found this activity helpful to discuss the Qiblah! If you loved this and want to make sure you don’t miss out on any future posts, subscribe to receive all posts by email on the side! You can also like my page on Facebook and Instagram. All the links are on the side!

Moon Piñata

One of my favorite parts of this past Eid was this moon piñata! Inspired by Oh Happy Day, we decided to make a piñata for our Eid party. We used the these instructions for the most part, with only a few modifications. We glued a white piece of poster board on top of the brown cardboard, so that our fringe didn’t have to be as dense – any gaps would only show white poster board. We also used glue rather than tape to hold the moon together. Our cardboard was too thick to bend for the curve of the moon, so we used white poster board there as well. This was definitely easier as a two-person job.

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Making the moon was actually easier than I had anticipated – the hardest part was cutting the cardboard that gave the moon its sturdy shape. I thought that cutting and gluing the fringe would be very tedious, but honestly, it went by a lot quicker than I had expected.

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Due to the number and ages of our kids, we decided to hand the kids the piñata and let them try to break it with their hands, rather than hanging and having them take turns hitting it to break it. It took them a solid two minutes to figure it out, which in my opinion, is a success! Alhamdulillah.

Once the moon broke open, they shared the chocolate with each other, and even made sure that all the grown-ups got some too! Yummy 🙂

I hope you all had a blessed and memorable Eid!!

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Eid Mubarak Puzzle

My daughter LOVES puzzles. For Eid this year, I thought it would be fun to have one that she can first color, and then cut apart and play over and over again as a puzzle. If you have a puzzle-lover as well, you can download below!

To download the Eid Mubarak puzzle, click HERE.

For a more difficult puzzle, you can cut each piece out individually. For an easier puzzle (and an easier cutting job, phew!), you can cut a few pieces out together, like we did!

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(If you use print this out on cardstock, your puzzle will be sturdier!)

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Happy puzzle-ing, and happy EID! 🙂

[Puzzle overlay found from Microsoft Clip Art]

Takbir of Eid

Eid is fast approaching: the celebrations with family and friends, the mouth-watering food, and of course, the presents!

But obviously, that’s not all! On the day of Eid, we remember Allah (SWT) as well, for He blessed us with this beautiful day.

On the day of Eid, we remember and praise Allah (SWT) by reciting the Takbir of Eid.

 

Let’s learn the Takbir of Eid and its translation!

Here, you can download the Arabic and its English translation to cut apart. This can be reused as many times as you want, and will help in learning the order of Takbir as well as the translation of each line.

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Eid Mubarak, everyone! May you all have a happy and blessed day 🙂

[Source: Arabic; English is a simplified mix of here and here]

Ramadhan Acrostics

I love acrostic poems! They are so versatile, and they are a fun way to end our series of Ramadhan activities.

In an acrostic poem, you choose a main word and write it vertically, with one letter on each line. Each line of the poem then has to start with the letter that is on that line. For example, if we use the word Ramadhan, we would have each line of the poem starting with the letters R, A, M, A, D, H, A, and N.

Yes, this is considered a poem, but no, it does not have to rhyme! Each line can be a word, a sentence, a phrase, or any combination thereof.

For your end-of-Ramadhan acrostic poems, you can have each kid write a poem about what they have learned this month, or what they have accomplished, or what they hope to remember from this month. They can also choose any word that they like. I love the creativity that this format allows! Every poem will be different.

For my sample poem, I decided to choose the word FAST.

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Using the word RAMADHAN to reflect on our accomplishments this month could sound something like this:

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P.S. I would LOVE to see what poems you and your kiddos come up with! Please share them with me, either in the comments section below or on the facebook page!

P.P.S. I love the way Islam from the Start used an acrostic poem to reflect on what they learned from Surah Ankaboot.