Valentine’s Day can be tricky to navigate as a child or even as an adult. So how do we approach it as Muslim Americans? Is it permissible?
We talked at length in my live with Sudduf Wyne on the reasons why one may or may not participate in the holiday, but also about how to reframe it. In this blog post I detail the lesson plan I’m using to teach toddlers.
The one we love the most is Allah. We need to practice framing love for Him and not for each other, because our love for each other is only for the now, and the life after. Again, hear the whole discussion on this on our live. But how do you teach such a concept to children.
Similar to my craft table activity in my previous blog post I decided to use craft paper as a way for the kids to visualize the blessings from Allah.
We taped the paper like a card that says Allah shows me love by… One by one we had the kids come up and draw a way Allah shows them love.
We then reflected how these are all blessings from Allah. But how can we show Allah we love Him? And after some discussion the answer we came up with was through prayer. The issue is, most of the kids can’t pray. They don’t know the Surahs, so how can they show Allah love. Thats when we talked about dhikr, as a way to pray. One of the best ways of dhikr is by talking about the names of Allah. So that’s our goal for today, to learn about the names of Allah.
We then broke into groups of 6 kids each and played a few rounds of Names of Allah | A Memory Matching Game.
The game has 20 names of Allah illustrated to allow the child to visually understand it’s meaning. It also has the names written in English, Arabic and it’s transliteration. What this allowed the kids to do was learn the names of Allah through play. They were able to interact and find a fun way to perform dhikr, a form of prayer
I had each student chose a name of Allah that resonated most with them and illustrate it. We then met at our discussion circle to share it. I had each child come up and share the name of Allah and how it applies to them. For example, The Watchful One: because he watches over me at night so I don’t have nightmares!
When I use this lesson plan, I use my pre-made printable activity book so the child doesn’t necessarily have to draw and can instead just color the name of Allah!