The enlightening month of Ramadan is here! Many of us will be getting ready to utilize our time in reaping rewards and pleasing Allah(glorified and exalted be He). If you are a parent, there are immense spiritual rewards that you can achieve by encouraging children to be productive during Ramadan. It is often the case that children learn by example and pick up actions carried out by their parents. So, before we can expect our kids to be productive during Ramadan, we must first start by being productive ourselves! This is why first and foremost, it is crucial that we pave the way and set a good example to our children in order for them to benefit in this life and in akhirah, In sha Allah. Almighty Allah(glorified and exalted be He) tells us with regards to the importance of
Ramadan that, ' ' The month of Ramadan[is that] in which was revealed the Qur’an, a guidance for the people and clear proofs of guidance and criterion. So whoever sights[the new moon of] the month, let him fast it; and whoever is ill or on a journey – then an equal number of other days. Allah intends for you ease and does not intend for you hardship and[wants] for you to complete the period and to glorify Allah for that[to] which He has guided you; and perhaps you will be grateful. ' '[Qur ' an: Chapter 2, Verse 185] You may have children who are of fasting age, young children who are not fasting, or a mix of both. Whatever ages your children are, you can get them in the spirit of Ramadan and further instill Islamic productivity in them. There are many activities you can do with your children during Ramadan depending on their ages. Even children who are very young can engage in fun, Islamic related activities during this month to further enhance their knowledge, play and stimulation.
I have three young children all under the age of 5, my youngest being a year old. They won’t be fasting, but they do enjoy productive activities during Ramadan! Let’s Have Productive Fun this Ramadan With Your Tiny Tots! Here are just some productive Ramadan activities your little ones can enjoy, while instilling for them the foundations of a love and joy for this blessed Holy Month.
Have Fun Baking for Iftar
Perhaps bake some Ramadan cupcakes with the little ones to be served at iftar. Kids will enjoy helping with the decorating and it will also make them feel more involved.
Reciting small surahs to your little ones and encouraging them to repeat the words can be both productive and stimulating. Giving praise when they attempt to repeat the words or have correctly recited will further encourage them to recite the Qur’an during this blessed month.
You may want to try playing some Islamic nasheeds and there are some wonderful kids nasheeds that you could play which helps to familiarise children with the Arabic alphabet. This can further enhance their knowledge and is a good way of teaching them something without them realizing it.
Reading Islamic Stories
Reading stories of the Prophets or Islamic stories about the Holy Month of Ramadan can really stimulate your children and provide them with sound knowledge from an early age. If your children are very young, it would help to read stories with colourful pictures that you can point at whilst you read and further encourage them.
Let’s Instill Productive Habits With Your Older Children Learning to Fast!
If you have slightly older children who are fasting and want to boost their productivity, then you may want to try the following: Reading, Reciting & Understanding the Qur’an Get your children reading the Qur’an and make it something enjoyable by enabling them to understand the verses that they are reading. Talking about the verses and reading translation of the Qur’an can further enhance their knowledge and enable them to think about the beautiful message that Allah(glorified and exalted be He) has given us.
Praying at the Mosque
Take your kids to pray at the mosque during Ramadan and let them pray in congregation, as this will further increase their motivation to be productive. Listening to the khutbah and seeking knowledge at the mosque is an excellent way of instilling Islamic productivity.
Arranging Iftars for Family & Friends
Encourage your children to invite their Muslim brothers or sisters for iftar(if you have the means to do so) and let them share in the reward of feeding someone during Ramadan.
Participate in Islamic Recitation Competitions
Many children enjoy participating in Islamic Qur’an recital competitions. This can give them something to focus on and learn a new surah or practice reciting with eloquence. Children should not be pushed to do this activity and it should be done if they feel confident enough and are happy to participate. Children should also be encouraged and praised, as this will further help them with their self - confidence to recite with eloquence for the sake of Allah(glorified and exalted be He).
Supplicating on Laylat al - Qadr
Encourage your children to make dua to Allah (glorified and exalted be He) and learn the benefits of supplication especially on the night of power, Laylat al-Qadr. As Allah (glorified and exalted be He) has said: ''Indeed, We sent the Qur’an down during the Night of Decree. And what can make you know what is the Night of Decree? The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months. The angels and the Spirit descend therein by permission of their Lord for every matter. Peace it is until the emergence of dawn.'' [Qur'an: Chapter 97, Verses 1-5] In sha Allah, I hope that these tips will be beneficial in encouraging your children to be productive during Ramadan and getting the most out of this truly blessed month.