My First Quran Activity Book was born out of frustration. There are lots of amazing Muslim books out there but I was looking for something more interactive for my daughter. When I took my daughter to early childhood programs in the library they stressed the importance of hands on learning. After a lot of research to figure out what “hands on learning” means, I realized its basically a play-based learning model. If play-based learning is so crucial to teach young kids, why don’t we use it to teach Islam? I wanted to come up with a way not only for her to learn the stories in the Quran but be able to play with them too.
So I got to looking up ideas of interactive play on Pinterest. Felt books was one of the more popular ideas. I liked the idea of having removable pieces because it gave the book a purpose for the child. Since my daughter couldn’t read, or really understand anything I was saying, it helped her process concepts through images and manipulating the images. But felt books have their draw backs. They get pretty filthy, really fast. We all know kids are messy so between spilt milk and ketchup fingers the book was not going to stand the test of time with my daughter. Felt books are also notorious for having a million pieces that don’t stay put. Because the bond between two pieces of felt is weak, after a while the pieces just slide off the page when you pick up the book.
The other popular hands on learning activity I found were re usable activity books. They were printable sheets that were placed in plastic sleeves that could be written on with dry erase markers. I absolutely loved the fact that they could be wiped clean and reused over and over again. Cool concept; except my daughter can’t hold a pen, and can’t write.
But why not combine the two ideas? I wanted something that had the ease of a wipeable-reusable surface, but with removable pieces for interactive play. So I went to the one place I knew that would have inspiration for a project like this: Michaels.
After thorough research, I came up with the design of the book and how it would all come together. However, I still needed to come up with the content itself! The only problem was, I can’t draw, not even stick figures. Having been in science I never had an artistic side, but what I did have was a critical side. I spent hours on Youtube and Google not only learning graphic design, but also critiquing art styles to narrow down my own.
Though I was tempted to reach out to a manufacturer and have these books made professionally, I wanted to do a proof of concept. Last Ramadan, I opened up shop in my kitchen and hand made approximately 100 copies of the My First Quran Activity Book. While making these books I had very little understanding of marketing or even social media! Alhumdolilah, I still sold out.
The Big News
The success of the launch last ramadan gave me the courage to find a manufacturer to pair up with to make this the book I always wanted: a magnet book! Finding a manufacturer wasn’t easy either. Remember, I’m very critical. I wanted the book to be of the highest quality possible while still being affordable!
I am so happy to announce that I have completed that process and am ready open up pre-orders for My First Quran Activity Book for Eid. This is the first step towards bring interactive play to Islamic education. I have so many more ideas that can help make teaching Islam to our kids fun and exciting. As a tease, you can get a glimpse of this through my free gift, only for those who pre-order the book!