Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Natural Muslim Parenting

Goals for Muslim Families to Strive Towards -

  • Recognizing the Majesty of the Creator, Allah subhannahu wa ta'ala

  • Recognizing pregnancy as an ayah (sign) of Allah's power and creation 

  • Recognizing that Allah subhannahu wa ta'ala has perfectly created women's bodies for childbearing and nursing
  • Recognizing pregnancy as a natural physical and spiritual phenomena given to women by our Creator
  • Making a commitment to a natural childbirth, drug free and invasive procedures, by following the example of Maryam (pbuh) in the Qur'an
  • Making a firm commitment to Ar Rada' (breastfeeding)
  • Recognizing that Ar Rada' is Allah's gift to children, and that it is the best way to feed and nurture a young infant
  • Following the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH) in welcoming the newborn child
  • Using the "family bed" in order to promote sleep, nighttime nursing, and bonding between mother, father, and baby
  • Supporting the right of the Muslim mother to stay at home to nurture and educate her young children
  • Following the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH) in gently disciplining children
  • Following the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH) in playing and joking with our children
  • Following the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH) in showing tenderness and mercy to our children

  • Making a firm commitment to raising our children in an environment free from toxic relationships, food and influences

  • Making a commitment to ensure that our children receive the best education we can give them, without compromising their modesty, innocence and childhood 
  • Supporting educational programs, schools and Islamic homeschooling environments that honor Islam & The Big Picture of Tawhidic education
  • Making a commitment to our family's health by promoting excercise and play, creating a balance with foods, activity, rest and work
  • Teaching our children to pray & praying with them
  • Giving our children the gift of understanding al Qur'an and the Deen
  • Seperating older boys and girls from one another so that they can remain in a state of haya' (modesty, shyness) as commanded by Allah subhannahu wa ta'ala and His Messenger (PBUH)
  • Teaching our children about the sanctity of marriage and marital relations by striving to be compassionate, moral, and by modeling partnership
  • Encouraging young girls to wear the hijab and cover their adornments
  • Encouraging young men to guard their modesty
  • Recognizing that children are an Amana (trust) from Allah subhannahu wa ta'ala, born in a state of complete fitra, and that it is our duty, as Muslim adults, to protect, nurture, and educate them so that they can grow up as strong Muslim men and women.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Do You Know The Toy Maker?


Reflections for Parents Raising Children

Every day, my actions, reactions, and values are being imprinted on my children. It is my responsibility to conduct myself in such a way that will be worthy of their imitation.

Self-Reflection Questions
1. What is my vision for my children’s future?
2. What values are my children learning from my behavior?
3. Are all my actions worthy of imitation?

4. How can I improve my actions? 

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Math Through Language & Imagery

Read any good math lately?
One More BunnyEach Orange Math For All Seasons 

Why not use story books to present mathematical concepts? Many children need an authentic context for using mathematics. Books can be used as a nonthreatening vehicle for investigating a variety of mathematical concepts and relationships.

You may want to vistit this wonderful site:



"One of the earliest and most distinguished of the Arabic mathematicians was
the ninth century scholar Abu Ja'far Mohammed ibn Musa Al-Khwarizmi, who was an
astronomer to the caliph at Baghdad. His name indicates that he was from the
town of Khwarizm (now Khiva), on the Amu Darya river, south of the Aral Sea in
what is now Uzbekistan. (Khwarizm was part of the Silk Route, a major trading
pathway between Europe and the East.) Al-Khwarizmi's full name can be translated
as "Father of Ja'far, Mohammed, son of Moses, native of the town of

Al-Khwarizmi wrote several books that were to be enormously influential. In
particular, his book describing how to write numbers and compute with them using
the place-value decimal system that came out of India would, when translated
into Latin three hundred years later, prove to be a major source for Europeans
who wanted to learn the new system.

In fact, Al-Khwarizmi's book on arithmetic with the Hindu-Arabic numbers was
so important, it appears to have been translated several times. Many
translations began with the phrase "dixit Algorismi" ("so says Al-Khwarizmi"), a
practice that led to the adoption in medieval times of the term
algorism to refer to the process of computing with the Hindu-Arabic
numerals. Our modern word "algorithm" is an obvious derivation from that

Another of Al-Khwarizmi's manuscripts was called Kitab al jabr
, which translates roughly as "restoration and compensation".
The book is essentially an algebra text. It starts off with a discussion of
quadratic equations, then goes on to some practical geometry, followed by simple
linear equations, and ending with a long section on how to apply mathematics to
solve inheritance problems. The Englishman Robert of Chester translated
Al-Khwarizmi's algebra book from Arabic into Latin in 1145. The part dealing
with quadratic equations eventually became famous. Such was the influence of
this work that the Arabic phrase al jabr in the book's title gave rise
to our modern word "algebra".

After Al-Khwarizmi, algebra became an important part of Arabic mathematics.
Arabic mathematicians learned to manipulate polynomials, to solve certain
algebraic equations, and more.
For modern readers, used to thinking of algebra
as the manipulation of symbols, it is important to realize that the Arabic
mathematicians did not use symbols at all. Everything was done in words.

One of the most famous Arabic mathematicians was 'Umar Al-Khayammi, known in
the West as Omar Khayyam, who lived approximately from 1048 to 1131. Although
remembered today primarily as a poet, in his time he was also famous as a
mathematician, scientist, and philosopher, doing major work in all those

It was largely through translations of the Arabic texts into Latin that
western Europe, freshly emerged from the Dark Ages, kick-started its mathematics
in the tenth and subsequent centuries."  -   The Math Guy

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Understanding Child Development Stages - Montessori Age 0 - 3

It is essential that parents understand basic child development concepts so they may better guide children appropriately. Our role is to keenly observe them and try our best to offer an environment that supports their growth.

Here are a few excellent video links -

Infants - One Year http://michaelolaf.net/BirthYearOne.html

Year 1 - 3 Stage http://michaelolaf.net/BirthOneToThree.html


Friday, February 11, 2011

Stages of Development

Three Stages of Life

Islam has divided the upbringing of a child into three stages from birth to age 21. The division is based on the following hadith of the Prophet (s.a.w.): “The child is the master for seven years; and a slave for seven years and a vizier for seven years; so if he grows into a good character within 21 years, well and good; otherwise leave him alone because you have discharged your responsibility before Allah.”

The same hadith has been explained: “Let your child play upto seven years; and keep him with you (for education and training) for another seven years; then if he succeeds
(well and good); otherwise, there is no good in him.”

The First Stage: from birth to age seven

As the first stage is a care-free period, the child is to be considered  as “master” of the parents. The Prophet said, “The child is the master for seven years.” This is the age of being a child and playing; he or she is not yet fully ready for education through formal instruction.

What has been said above, however, does not mean that a child cannot grasp or understand
anything; not at all. The child is constantly influenced by the atmosphere in which he lives; he/she learns by observation and imitation; therefore, it is absolutely necessary for the parents to provide good examples by their own behaviour. The Prophet said, “Respect your children and teach them good
behaviour, Allah will forgive (your sins).

Although the child is not ready for formal instructions, religious issues —very basic and simple— should be introduced to them gradually. “Graduality” is the most important point to remember at this stage of life. The following hadith is very significant to understand what is meant by gradually:

“When the child reaches 3 years of age, teach him seven times to recite la ilaha il-lal lāh.

Then leave him at that till he is 3 years, 7 months and 20 days old; then train him to say Muhammadun rasu-lul lāh.

Then leave him at that till he completes 4 years, then teach him seven times to say sal-lal
lāhu `ala Muhammadin wa āli Muhammad

Then leave him at that till he reaches the age of 5 years; then see if he can distinguish between the right and the left hand. When he knows the difference, then make him face qiblah and tell him to do sajdah.

This is to continue till he is 6 years of age. Then he should be told to pray and taught
ruku` and sajdah.

When he completes 7 years, then he should be asked to wash his face and hands, and then told to pray.
This will continue till he reaches the age of 9 years, when he should be taught proper ritual ablution for prayer and proper salāt

The Second Stage: from age eight to fourteen

This is the age when the child's mind can grasp logical reasoning and is developed for formal
education—it is very important that the child not only be educated but, at the same time, he or she should be raised with proper Islamic ethics. The Prophet emphasized that at this age the parents should be strict in disciplining their children.

In the sayings of the Prophet (s.a.w.), three things have been emphasized for the male children in the second stage of upbringing: 1. literacy for secular knowledge; 2. religious knowledge and  3. physical
education. For example, the Prophet (s.a.w.) said, “It is the right of the male child on his father to...teach him the Book of Allah...and riding and swimming.” Girls require similar lessons.

Religious education is very crucial at this stage so that the child's religious beliefs are based on sound reasoning and firm foundation. Make haste in teaching your youngsters hadith before they are approached and  misguided.

Literacy, and seeking of secular and religious knowledge has been equally emphasized for the
girls in our ahadith. However, instead of physical education, the ahadith talk about those specific subjects which would help the girls in becoming good wives and educated mothers. The destiny of the future generations of the ummah, after all, depends on the mothers who are learned, informed, and aware of their role in establishing a society which is always conscious of Allah's presence.

The Third Stage: from age fifteen to twenty-one.
The Prophet described this stage of  upbringing as follows: “The child...is an adviser for [the next] seven years.” At the age of fourteen, fifteen and up, a Muslim child is expected to have become a responsible teenager. Therefore, the Prophet says that the parents should now treat him or her more like a ‘friend’.

At this stage, the parents should guide and help their teenage child in make correct decisions
for themselves. In mid- and late-teens, the child may start the specific training or education for the career that he/she intends to pursue.. It is also the time when the child is nearing the age of marriage.

At the age of twentyone, the parents’ responsibility towards their children comes to an end.
If anyone brings up his children based on Islamic values, that child surely will  be the apple of the parents' eyes and the delight of their hearts; and it is this child who, in his turn, may be hoped to fulfil his obligations towards his parents.

The Prophet said, “A virtuous child is a flower from the flowers of Paradise.” He also said, “Among the good fortunes of a man is the virtuous child.”

lesson is based on  Allamah Rizvi's
book The Family Life of Isam