The responsibility of teaching young children the Quran is a heavy weight on my shoulders. I imagine most Muslim parents feel this way.
Part of my discomfort is that we are a non-Arabic speaking family. For years both my husband and I have struggled to memorize the Quran. I remind my self daily, despite the circumstances, that every Muslim is obliged to make attempts to learn and understand the book of Allah (swt) in the best way possible. I tell my five-year-old son and three-year-old daughter that Allah loves it when we recite the Quran and memorize it well. I remind them that the Angels of Dhikr (angels that come to enjoy the Remembrance of Allah) come and circle around them. It makes them feel very special.
Before I had children, I asked many families how they taught their children the book of Allah (swt). I quickly found out that there is no set way; it all depends on your child and their personal learning style. I’ve put together some guiding principles that seem to work for us so far.
1. Keep it short and regular. I start with no more than 5 minutes.
2. Keep the mood loving. Give your child lots of hugs and cuddles.
3. Let them know that something very special will follow quran time, like a good story or playtime with mom.
4. Play Quran softly in the home during playtime, morning routine, end-of-night routine. Turn off the TV.
5. Recite a quick surah with them before any new activity.
6. Recite short quran surahs in the car on the way to school.
7. Recite short quran surahs with them while you lay them down to bed.
8. Aim to do two short Quran sessions a day. This way if you miss one, you won’t feel badly.
9. Recite Quran with them while you push them on a swing. I learned my first surah this way.
10. Lastly my very favorite, turn off all the noises in the house. Give your child a special treat daily, like ice cream. Let them enjoy it to the soft peaceful sounds of Quran.
I welcome any readers to share what works for them. I pray by the grace of Allah (swt) that we are all able to create memorable, loving, Quran moments with our children.
Wa Allahu Alam. And Allah Knows Best.
Sharda Mohammed is a Canadian born mother of two young children. She has a keen interest in learning to foster leadership, self esteem and empathy in young children. She works part-time as a physical therapist.