Everyone knows that Ramadan is full of blessings and benefits for our minds, bodies, and souls. Even the little ones are aware of how special this month is. They eagerly want to get involved in the planning and preparing for all the festivities, participate in fasting, and join in the prayers and gatherings in the mosque. If we make it exciting and welcoming for them now, they will grow with beautiful memories of Ramadan being full of happiness, blessings, and togetherness.
Some simple ways to rev up their spirits is to decorate the house, fill it with beautiful aromas and perfumes, volunteer together as a family for a needy cause, dress them up when visiting the mosque and friends and relatives, and make their favorite foods together. Parents can also teach their children how to earn extra rewards in Ramadan by encouraging them to incorporate different sunnahs into their daily lives. With one whole month to develop these Prophetic habits, children and parents can continue to practice them throughout the year.
1. Suhoor: Getting up in the middle of the night to eat is a cool, fun thing for kids to do. Wake the mini-fasters up to warm, welcoming aromas such as cinnamon buns, hot chocolate, baked breads, etc.
2. Tahajjud: If the children are awake to eat at suhoor time, then this is a great opportunity to make them regular worshippers of the Tahajjud prayer and seek nearness to Allah.
3. Supplication before iftar: Sit together as a family and make a collective du’a. Make use of this time and make sure all iftar preparations are squared away ahead of time.
4. Break the fast with a date: Instead of a lavish feast for iftar, keep it simple with a few dates and water.
5. Give sadaqah: Have the kids make their very own sadaqah boxes. They can decorate and design them and place them in a prominent corner of the house. Closer to Eid-ul-Fitr, they can decide which needy cause to donate any money/small gifts they may have collected.
6. Use a miswak: Since, using the miswak does not break the fast, it can be a nice alternative to make the mouth feel clean and refresh during the long, hot summer fasts. Outside of Ramadan, it is a great way to encourage better oral hygiene for parents and children alike.
7. Enter mosque with right foot: Being regular attendees of the evening taraweeh prayers is one of the best parts of Ramadan. An added bonus is to teach the children to enter the mosque with their right feet.
8. Moon-sighting: This is always a fun activity to do as a family. Witnessing the crescent moon emerge at the end of the month is a great way to signify the completion of the blessed month and the arrival of the Eid holiday.
Tayyaba is a freelance journalist from Illinois. She has been featured on NPR and writes for numerous publications. She also speaks about marriage and family. Most importantly, she is blessed to be a mother of two little adventurers and blogs atwww.tayyabasyed.blogspot.com.