Today, I picked this book, Yunus a.s. and the Whale by Noura Durkee, from our shelf to read to Z. We’ve had this book for a long time, as I had originally bought this and others written by the same author when the 3 older kids were younger. Usually, I’m not too fond of Islamic books on prophets because I feel that the language is too high level to engage the younger children. But these books written by Noura Durkee, I love! I’m glad I rediscovered these on our shelf.
I looked for Youtube videos on Sperm whales for Z, and he picked this one to put on the blog. He now watches the videos from my blog posts.
This one is a good one since it compares and contrasts the size of a sperm whale to a human. I was able to show and remind Z of how Yunus a.s. was swallowed by the whale, and how dark it was inside and how small Yunus a.s. was compared to the whale. I think that aspect of the story probably held his attention. I was actually surprised that he was able to pay attention throughout the reading.
We haven’t been doing much hands-on activities, but I think Z’s learning style is not necessarily hands-on, though that would certainly make it more wholesome. So far, he seems to think and ponder a lot, which is a good thing. He seems to be digesting the information given for a long time. My break will end next week, so I wonder if I’ll be able to do this and more with him once my classes starts. At the very least, I hope to keep up the daily reading with him, and of course his IQRA (which is a struggle).
I realize and observed that teaching the kids how to read Quranic Arabic is and will be a struggle but it’s something that you have to do. Once they get past that and start to be able to read the Quran, then you enter the next phase. I’m still at that phase with N. I’m still working on her fluency. Her enunciation is very good, but her fluency needs more work. Once they get more fluent, then you can focus more on understanding. Though we also still do tafseer on the shorter surahs, thanks to Nouman Khan’s Tafseer Podcast, and hold discussions based on that.
This morning after Fajr, we started tafseer on Surah Al Kauthar. One of the lessons shared was that the more Allah gives you, the more you have to give/share with others. So we discussed what things are given to us by Allah, both tangible and intangible, and how we can share them with others. Some snippets of the discussion:
Blessing of money and material wealth:
- give in charity
- give to the poor
Blessing of talent and skills:
- teach the skill and talent to others
- use it to benefit others in many different ways
Blessing of health:
- help others while you’re healthy, especially when others are sick and need help
- do a lot of good while you are healthy
Blessing of happiness and love:
- give gifts to make someone happy
- something as simple as a smile can lift a person’s depressed mood
- volunteer to entertain sick kids at the hospital
- volunteer at the soup kitchen
- visit the old at the hospice (we talked about how grown adult children leave their old parents and these parents are mostly lonely and maybe feel abandoned, and so would cherish talking to a child or anyone)
- spend time and talk to someone