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LIEBSTER AWARD!

I have recently been awarded the Liebster Award by the inspirational Raising Young Believers. Thank you so much! 🙂

If you were like me, you probably have no idea what the Liebster award is! So here is a brief overview:
The Liebster Award is an
online award that is by bloggers, for bloggers. It’s passed from person to
person to encourage connection and support within our writing community, and to
help discover new and upcoming bloggers.

To accept the award and participate there’s just five simple rules:
1.      Link back to the person who nominated you
2.      Answer the questions given to you by the nominator
3.      You can choose to nominate up to 11 other bloggers
with less than 200 followers
4.      Create 11 questions for the nominees
5.      Notify all nominees via social media/blogs
Here are my answers to the questions
asked by Raising Young Believers. So much fun!

1. Do you cook? What’s your favourite meal to prepare?

Yes, I do cook. When I have time, I love experimenting with new recipes and I’m getting quite good at baking breads and cakes. My favourite meal to prepare is a traditional English roast dinner. It reminds me of my childhood 🙂


2. What do you do in your time off? How do you unwind?

By the time the children are asleep, and any last bit of housework is done, its usually 10pm. To unwind I like reading or writing new blog posts. This blog brings me so much joy! 


3. Have you ever been camping? If no, would you ever
go camping?

I went camping as a teenager with my school, and I hated it! I love being outdoors, but nothing beats having a nice warm shower and curling up in a ‘real’ bed after a long day hiking! 


4. As a child, did you enjoy school?

Yes, for the most part, I did enjoy school. But often I felt that it was a complete waste of my time! I vividly remember sitting in a English Literature class learning about World War I poetry and saying to my friend, ‘Why are they making me learn all this! When am I going to use this!’ Even then I had an opinion about education!

5. What is your greatest fear?


Being buried alive….enough said!

6. Sweet or salty foods?


Salty! Savoury pastries, pretzels, salted crisps…..yum!

7. Movies or books?


Books. I can’t even remember the last time I watched a movie! When I go on holiday, the first thing I pack and unpack are my books! Total Bookworm!


8. Summer or winter?

This is hard but I guess I’d have to say summer. I love pottering about in our garden, tending to our very modest vegetable patch, as well as doing school work with the kids outside. 

9. Tea or coffee?


Coffee, coffee, coffee!

10. Where do you get your blogging inspirations from?


I read a variety of blogs by all kinds of women! I think my first introduction to the blogging scene was Noor Janan Homeschool. Its still one of my favorites! 


11. Share the link to a blogpost you most enjoyed writing.

It was fun writing ‘A Day-In-The-Life‘ blog post. I knew our home was a crazy place, but it wasn’t until I wrote this that I realised how crazy! 
  

And now my nominee is:

Suhaila from Play, Unpenned – Please check out her blog. She writes beautifully about gentle parenting and the importance of play, as well as many other things!

And the questions that I would to ask are…

1. Describe yourself in three words.
2. If you could recommend one thing for a new mum to buy for her baby, what would it be?

3. Do you use a baby-carrier, and if so which brand?

4. If you could describe your parenting style in one word what would it be?
5. Are you are early-bird or a night-owl?
6.  If you could be a character from a book/movie, who would it be?
7. Where would you most like to travel?
8. If you had the whole day off (no work, no kids etc.) what would you do with your time?
9. Favourite food?
10. What do you write about in your blog?
11. Share a link to a blogpost that you most enjoyed writing.

I can’t wait to read your responses! 

Please remember us in your duaas.

Peace and Love.

Book Review | The Story of the Elephant Pop-up and Play Book

Its that wonderful time of year where we all feel excitement for our fellow brothers and sisters on Hajj, and anticipation for the coming of Eid.

I’ve been following Shade 7 Publishing for some time on Instagram and had been planning to buy their book ‘The Story of the Elephant Pop-up and Play book‘ for my boys for Eid al-Adha.

Well, I was thrilled when the publishers reached out to me and offered to send me a copy to review, as well as offering all my readers a DISCOUNT CODE on the price of the book. I am so excited to share this beautiful book with you all.

‘The Story of the Elephant’ is an Islamic children’s book based on Surah al Feel (Chapter 105) of the Holy Quran.

For those unfamiliar with the story:

The tyrant ruler of Yemen, Abraha, leads his army of elephants to Mecca to destroy the Ka’ba. Allah sends a great flock of birds to protect His house, they drop stones onto the soldiers from a great height and the whole army perishes. 

It’s the perfect story for a children’s book! 
Uniquely, this play book features pop-ups, interactive flaps and tabs, as well as a colouring map and press-out elephants to re-create the story. It is suitable for ages 3+.

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
The army of elephants!

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
Beautiful bird pop-up

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
The Ka’ba – Dramatic End to the Book

I thought it would be fun to make a YouTube Video of my first impressions when I opened up the book. I hope the video will be useful for you to see inside this book and help you get a feel for it. It’s my first ever Youtube Video, so please forgive my amateur videography skills! I’ll get better insha’Allah!


Well, my thoughts on this book are…it’s brilliant! 
Firstly, its is really well written. It kept my boys engaged and interested.The language used is pitched at the right level, being neither too complicated for little ones, nor to simplistic. 
“Abraha was so cross, he sent an army of elephants to Mecca to destroy the Ka’ba stone by stone.”
Secondly, the paper is thick and glossy, and will withstand whatever little hands try to do to it!

My favourite bit…Pull the tab and the elephant kneels down!

Pull the tab to watch the stones drop

The illustrations are beautifully hand-drawn and the pop-ups are completely charming! My kids were so excited when they saw them:
“Wow!”
“Look Mummy, the elephant’s got a hat on!”
“Look at that! Look at that!”
“The Ka’ba!!!”
I particularly appreciated how the publishers have incorporated a little Seerah into the book. They mention that the year of the elephant is the same year that our beloved Prophet was born in, and talks a little about Abdul Muttalib. They add another dimension to the educational experience by referring back to Prophet Ibrahim (AS) and the duaa he made to protect Mecca.

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
Abdula Muttalib’s camels

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
The duaa of Abdul Muttalib

The book also features some duaas in Arabic, which are very clearly written, with vowel markings, transliteration and translations, so anyone and everyone can benefit from them. 
There’s a simple quiz at the end to reinforce what your children have learnt, with the answers hidden underneath yet another flap!
The book contains a large pocket at the back that contains the colouring map and a press-out card Ka’ba and loads of elephants. One way you could use this is to re-create the elephants approach to Mecca using these press-out figures. For kids that enjoy hands-on learning activities, this is great way to reinforce what they have heard and bring the story to life.

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
Colouring in his Ka’ba

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
“I’ve got the mummy elephant! You’ve got the baby one!”

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
The whole family joined it!

My 5 year-old son loves this part in particular! He keeps bringing out the map and adding more and more detail to it. Then he sets up all the elephants and the Ka’ba with great satisfaction! Unfortunately its all a bit to fiddly for my 3 year-old to do on his own, so he’s happy looking through the book again and again, pulling all the tabs and lifting the flaps.

The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
Using this map to revise geography
The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review
Reenacting the approach of the Abraha’s army 

This book is definitely robust enough for young children. So far it has survived some serious love from my little ones!
‘The Story of the Elephant’ makes teaching this Quranic tale, not only easy, but a really special and memorable experience for children. It has to be my kids’ favorite Islamic Children’s book at the moment. 
It is not just a picture book, or a pop-up book, its a whole educational experience. It encourages learning and love for the Quran in a variety of ways and at a variety of levels . We even used it to teach Geography, History, Character building and Islamic history. 
I highly recommend this book. We absolutely love it!

EXCLUSIVE DISCOUNT CODE:

The publishers have very generously asked me to pass on a DISCOUNT CODE to you all. 
This discount is exclusive to the readers of Our Muslim Homeschool. 

US Residents 

Receive 45% DISCOUNT off the cost of the book. 
Visit TAQWA MEDIA and enter the Discount Code OMHS2015 at the checkout.
This is offer is limited to the first 6 copies sold.
Thereafter, it will entitle the customer to 20% discount. This offer is only valid for then next 2 weeks.

UK Resident and REST OF THE WORLD

Receive 20% discount off the cost of the book.
Visit SHADE 7 PUBLISHING and enter the Coupon Code OMHS2015 on the ‘Cart’ page.

It is only valid for the next 7 days.
(09.00GMT Saturday 12th September to 09.00GMT Saturday 19th September 2015)
Shade 7 Publishing have also created a cross-curricular 6 week lesson plan pack to go along with this book, for children in years Reception to Key Stage 2. It conforms with the New 2014 National Curriculum framework in the UK. 
For my followers the publishers have agreed to:
1 Book + 6 week Lesson Plan Pack for £49.99 (inc. UK shipping).
3 Books + 6 week Lesson Plan Pack for £99 (inc. UK shipping).
If you live outside of the U.K. contact them directly for shipping costs. 
If you are interested in the lesson plan pack, then email them at info@shade7.co.uk  to arrange purchase. 
We will be working through some of these lesson plans over the coming weeks insha’Allah. I will keep you all up to date and show you how we have been using them on my Instagram and Facebook accounts.
The Story of the Elephant Surah al-Feel Book Review

I hope you found this review helpful. If anything is unclear, or you need more information, please leave a comment for me down below and I will do my best to answer your questions. 
Make sure you don’t miss the next blog post by Subscribing to my mailing list.

For a daily look into our homeschooling day follow me on InstagramTwitter or Facebook


Thank you so much for stopping by our blog!
  
Please remember us in your duaas.  


Peace and Love.

Disclaimer: Shade 7 Publishing sent me a complimentary copy of this book. This review was NOT sponsored. All opinions expressed are genuine! 

Story of Ibrahim: Mobile Craft Activity

Story of Ibrahim craft
Story of Ibrahim craft

This week in our Muslim homeschool we have been looking at the story of Prophet Ibrahim (AS). 
In my humble opinion, I find children retain these Islamic stories better if they are followed up with a hands-on activity. This craft is very quick and easy, and will help your children to remember what they have heard.
The story I related can be found in the Quran [6:75-80]. We began by reading a simplified version of this story from the I Love Islam Series: Book 1.

The story tells us how Ibrahim (AS) asked his people if they believed a star was God, but when the star disappeared in the morning he said, “See! That star is not Allah. Allah would never go away!

Then he asked his people is the moon was Allah, but when morning came he said, “The moon cannot be Allah, because Allah would never go away.”

Finally he asked them is the sun was God, but inevitably the sun set and so the sun too could not be Allah. Allah always exists. He never sets and never goes away!

After we finished the story it was ….CRAFT TIME!

Materials Needed

Foil card (Various colours)
FREE PRINTABLE
String
Glue Stick
Materials for Story of Ibrahim craftScissors
Permanent Marker
Sticky Tape
Hole punch

1. Begin drawing a sun, moon, star and a large semi-circle onto the foil-card with the permanent marker. Allow the children to cut them out.

2. Cut around the wording on the FREE PRINTABLE and glue it to the large semi-circular card.

3. Cut three lengths of string (approximately 15 cm each) and tape either the moon, sun and star to the bottom of each piece of string.

4. Tape the other end of the string to the semi-circle. In my opinion, it looks best if the strings are all different lengths.

5. Punch a hole in the top of the semi-circle with a hole-punch, and use some string to hang your mobile up. Our mobile has taken pride-of-place hanging from our kitchen curtain pole!

Story of Ibrahim craft
How have you taught your children this story? I would love to hear! Please leave me a comment below. 
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For a daily look into our homeschooling day follow me on InstagramTwitter or Facebook


Thank you so much for stopping by our blog!
  
Please remember us in your duaas.  


Peace and Love. 

Slow Cooker Freezer Meals

The New Homeschool Year is about to begin!

During a busy homeschool day, it can be hard to find the time to cook, let alone cook something healthy and nutritious. Don’t get me wrong, last year I found myself resorting to frozen meals or takeaways all too often. Sometimes there just isn’t enough time in the day! I decided that this year I would stop making excuses and get organized before our homeschool year began.

Homeschool  Prep Slow Cooker Freezer Meals

Before our homeschool year starts, I wanted to fill up the freezer with a variety of slow cooker freezer meals that we can turn to on those super busy days. If I know that we are planning to be out of the house all day, or if we have to be somewhere very early in the morning,  I can rest easy knowing that we have these slow cooker meals already prepared in the freezer.
The idea is that you do all the prep work, like chopping vegetables and measuring out ingredients, in advance, and put everything into a zip-loc bag. 
Then the night before, just take one packet out of the freezer and allow it to defrost overnight in the refrigerator. In the morning, empty the contents of the bag into the slow cooker, set on low, and leave to cook until dinner-time. That’s it!

Please note: There are some ingredients you cannot freeze (e.g. yoghurt), but you can still prepare everything else in advance, and just add those separately when you’re ready to cook.

When your house is chaotic, you kids are fighting and you have 101 other things to do, at least you know that dinner will be ready on time! No chopping, not peeling, no stirring and no mess to clear up afterwards!
These meals should be eaten within three months of being frozen.

1Start by writing the name of the dish, any ingredients that need to be added later, and the best before date on the zip-loc bags.

Get zip-loc bags ready

2. Assemble all the ingredients you require for this meal prep.

Assemble Ingredients
3. Mix all the ingredients together according to the recipe you are using. 

(If you would like to see which recipes have been using, CLICK HERE to see my Pinterest board of CROCK POT RECIPES.)

Mix ingredients in a large bowl

4. Decant into the zip-loc bags.
 I find they are easiest to fill if you loop them over the top of a jug or bowl.

Use jug to hold up zip-loc bag
5. Then seal the zip-loc bags, making sure to squeeze out as much air as possible.

Homeschool  Prep Slow Cooker Freezer Meals
Honey Sesame Chicken

Homeschool  Prep Slow Cooker Freezer Meals
Beef Stew

6. Pop them in the freezer and they’re ready to go!

I am so excited to see how these freezer meals work out. Please let me know in the comments below if you tried this out and what recipes you use. I love finding new recipes!

If you are interested in seeing which recipes I use, please CLICK HERE to see my Pinterest board of CROCK POT RECIPES.

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For a daily look into our homeschooling day follow me on InstagramTwitter or Facebook.

Thank you for visiting our blog!
Please remember us in your duaas.

Peace and Love.

Teach The 99 Names of Allah – al-Malik

Al-Malik – The King and Owner of Dominion.

Learning the ninety-nine names of Allah should not be just about memorising a long list of names. It should be something that helps children to understand their Lord and form a relationship with Him. It should be more than just words on the tongue, but should touch their hearts and deepen their love for God.

One way of engaing young kids in Islamic education is through arts and crafts

This week in our Muslim homeschool we learnt the name:

Al-Malik – The King and Owner of Dominion.

We began by talking about the definition:

‘Al-Malik is both the Owner, who possesses, and the King, who has complete authority and commands what He possesses. The One to whom the commanding and forbidding belong to. The King, The Sovereign Lord, The One with the complete Dominion.’

Whilst the kids were making the Crown Craft (outlined below) our conversation went something like this:

“Allah is The King. He is The King of kings. He is your King!

But what is a King? What does a King do?”

After a bit ( NO…. a lot!) of prompting they arrived at the answer,

“A king owns everything, tells everyone what to do and punishes those who disobey him.”

“But who owns the King? Who tells him what to do? Who punishes the King if he is naughty?”

“ALLAH!”

“Allah is the King of Kings! Al-Malik!”




It is important for your children to understand that He is not like anything they can imagine. He is  not like any King they know, and He most certainly does NOT have a crown!

Make your own crown craft
Children’s Crown Craft

Materials Needed

  • Gold card
  • Tissue paper
  • Fun fur (1-2″wide)
  • Stickers
  • PVA glue
  • Stapler
  • Selo-tape
  1.  From the gold card, cut out two strips, each approximately 2″ wide.
  2. Staple two card strips together. This will be the base of your crown.
    Mak your own crown craft
  3. Spread PVA glue along the bottom half of each card strip and stick the fun fur along this edge. It will look best if you allow some of the gold card to show at the top.  Make your own crown craftMake your own crown craft
  4. Meanwhile cut out 4 more gold strips from the card, each 1″ wide. 
    Make your own crown craft
  5. Staple 2 strips together, with the gold side facing inward.
    Make your own crown craft
  6. Once the glue has dried on the fur, staple the wider card strip together, making sure that it is the correct size for your child’s head.
  7. Attach this across the top of the crown base. 
    Make your own crown craft
  8. Repeat from step 5 with the remaining strips and staple perpendicular to the first arch.
    Make your own crown craft
  9. Decorate the crown with stickers and jewels.
    Make your own crown craft
  10. When everything has dried, push the tissue paper up into the underside of the crown and use your selo-tape to secure it in place. 
    Make your own crown craft

Now your kid is ready to be a king (or Queen!). Whilst they play remind them,”You are a King, but who is your King? Who is the King of kings? Who is al-Malik? ……. ALLAH!!!!

Make your own crown craft

Make your own crown craft

Make your own crown craft
Make your own crown craft

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Thank you so much for stopping by our blog!
 
Please remember us in your duaas. 

Peace and Love.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:

AL-KHALIQ– CLICK HERE

Are Perfectionists Bad Mothers?

As a homeschooling mom, I spend the best part of everyday with my children. They witness and learn from my character and actions every day. But there is one problem, I am a perfectionist. What effect will this have on my children?
I have spent much
time reading and reflecting on perfectionism and parenting, and wanted to
answer the question: Are Perfectionists Bad Mothers?
Parenting as a perfectionists
The short answer to this question is: Yes, they can be bad
mothers IF they don’t do something to control it.
Of course being a perfectionist has its positive points. The
house is usually presentable, there is home-cooked food for every meal, the children
are dressed well; but underlying this outward image is an inner struggle and
discontentment with every action and every effort.
I come from a long line of perfectionists and no doubt at
least one of my children will follow me in this.
New studies have shown that
perfectionism is primarily a genetic trait, and the parenting and the
environment a child is exposed to only play a secondary role. This means that
perfectionist parents not only have to deal with their own drive for
perfection, but also their children’s too!
If a perfectionist mother has such high expectations on
herself, then it only follows that she too will have high expectations for her
children. If she cannot tolerate her own imperfections, she will not tolerate
them in her child. This inevitably leads to the child feeling that her parents
are constantly dissatisfied with her, and feeling inadequate.
Perfectionist parents often confuse their own sense of
self-worth with their child’s, feeling that if the child looks good, then I
look good. However when the child does not behave as the mother feels is
acceptable, then the mother takes that personally as it reflects badly on her.
This internal pressure can often be triggered by competition;
competition with family, friend’s children, school friends or even the children
of complete strangers. This obsession with looking ‘perfect’ in front of others
is at the detriment of the child’s confidence. 
Children learn from the way we
behave and can see when mom is trying extra hard to impress. Despite what we
say, they see the way we behave and act first.
But of course, no one can be perfect. Not mom and not her
child. That child’s inability to live up to expectations, will cause her a
long-term sense of failure, a lowered self-esteem, which may in turn result in
resentment and anger
towards her mom.
Perfectionism can block communication between a mother and
her child. The child knows that she has to fine, so she pretends to be ok, even
when there are problems. She knows that admitting any problem will affect her
mom negatively, so she stays quiet.
Parenting as a pefectionist
Perfectionists spend so much time worrying; time that could
be time spent playing with their children, getting to know them and teaching
them life-long lessons.
These moms will often focus on that child’s ‘status’ or ‘achievements’
and no longer put emphasis on values like kindness, honesty, diligence. Surely
it is more important as parents to equip our children with good character than
with good grades.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
The most beloved of
Allah’s servants to Allah are those with the best manners.”
(Al-Bukhari)
Perfectionists have an increased risk of clinical depression,
eating disorders, suicide, and are more resistant to treatment as they don’t
want look as though they’ve failed.

So to all my fellow perfectionist parents out there….

  • Remove the worry from your heart and find the love.
  • Connect with your children
  • Feel happiness to be with them
  • Be grateful for your children
  • Don’t compare yourself to others
  • Have fun with them and relax
  • Let your children be who they are
  • Let go of expectations
  • Relinquish the power that you feel you have and remember
    Allah.

Only He can change your state and only He can ‘fix’ that which you
worry about. 
Instead of filling your mind with stress and discontentment, focus
on filling your heart with gratitude and submission to the Will of the Divine.
You will never find perfection in this world. Perfection is
with God
.
For truly, it is in the Remembrance of God that the heart
finds Peace.
Quran (13:28)
Please remember us in your duaas.
Peace and Love.
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Thank you for visiting our blog!

HOMESCHOOL CURRICULUM CHOICES 2015-2016

Year 1 and Preschool

It’s that time of year again…and I love it!
It’s time to plan next year’s Curriculum for Our Muslim Homeschool!

Like most homeschooling families, I started planning for the next year of home education at least 6 months ago, and have been slowly collecting different resources as I find them. This is what we are going with this year!

This blog-post contain affiliate links. Please see Disclaimer for more information. 
My children are 5 and 3 years old.
Below I have listed the curriculum we will be using for M as he starts Year 1 (Kindergarten) from September. For A, my pre-schooler, we will not be following a set curriculum, but will draw ideas from few different books, which I also have listed below.
The books listed below are the ‘main’ texts we will be using, but we will also draw from many other resources that we have at home; as well as online and from our library.
We also enjoy frequent field trips!

If you are interested in any of these books, just click on the title of the book for a link to Amazon  or the relevant website.Please note: This does not include our reading list, i.e books (fiction) that M will read or will have read to him.

 

I hope our curriculum helps to inspire other Muslim Homeschooling Families, as so many others have inspired me!

YEAR 1 / Kindergarten Curriculum

Islamic Studies

It is my opinion that religion should not be taught as an academic subject, but rather it should be something that children witness as part of normal life, learning from your example and other good company. However there are some books that we will use for activities and to stimulate discussions:

My First Quran Story Book by Saniyasnain Khan & Maria S Puri

I Love Islam Textbook: Level 1 (With CD)


Available to purchase from the HOMESCHOOL SHOP

 

QURANIC MEMORISATION 
At Home

ARABIC

Dino Lingo 

First Thousand Words in Arabic

Language Arts

READING

PHONICS:

Modern Curriculum Press Phonics, Level A

 

SPELLING:

Spelling Workout, Level B by Modern Curriculum Press


 

HANDWRITING:
Copy-work from some books of Hadith into these Handwriting school exercise books

Math:

History/Geography/Social Studies

For this year we will follow an interest-led approach for the humanities. By this I mean that we will have a relaxed approach to these topics, studying what-ever M wants to learn about using books from our local library.

Science:

We will be primarily doing the study of nature this year. However when the weather doesn’t allow us to go outdoors, we will use the latter two book for fun science experiments:

Looking at Nature: Bks. 1-4 by Elsie Proctor

Usborne Spotter’s Guides:

Trees

Woodland Life

Bugs and Insects

Birds



 

Mudpies to Magnets: A Preschool Science Curriculum

 
Everybody Has a Body: Science from Head to Toe

Sport:

Football
Trampolining with home-ed group
Bike rides / country walks / trips to the park

PRESCHOOL CURRICULUM:

These books provide me with ideas for preschool activities and learning games. They are a great resource!

 

Where Is Thumbkin?: 500 Activities to Use with Songs You Already Know

Slow and Steady Get Me Ready 

If you would like more ideas for Curriculum choices, particularly for older children, I would recommend visiting Noor Janan HomeschoolandIman’s Home-school; both great resources for Muslim Homeschoolers.
To make sure you don’t miss the next in the series, please Subscribeto my blog, or follow me on InstagramFacebook or Twitter.

If you have any questions, or any ideas for future posts, please leave them for me in the comments below. If you have a blog post about you homeschool curriculum. please feel free to link it below. I’d love to know what your using!
Thanks for stopping by!

Peace and Love.
Living history curriculum islamic

You might also be interesting in…

 

Click HERE

 

A Muslim Homeschool: A DAY IN THE LIFE

A typical day in our Muslim homeschool, doing Reception (Kindergarten) and Preschool with three small children.

M is 5 years-old, A is 3 years-old and K is 7 months-old.

6.45

‘MUMMMMMMMY! I WANT ICECREAM!’ I crack open one eye, to find
A has crawled into the bed in the night and seems to have kicked his dad out.

‘MUMMMMMMMY! I WANT ICECREAM!’ Before he wakes the baby, I slid myself out of
bed, eyes still half-closed, and shuffle downstairs.

He gets grapes. I get
coffee.

Feeling slightly more human, I feed the cats and then have some
cereal.

7.20

K wakes up. I nurse her and head back downstairs to finish
my cereal.

It‘s gone soggy.


7.35

My husband needs to
drop off his car at the garage at 8am today, so the kids and I need to go in my
car to give him a lift home. So I do the unthinkable….I wake up M!

He’s not
happy.

After putting a load
of nappies in the wash, I make the beds and then give the kids breakfast. It
just cereal and juice this morning, and a baby puree for K.

Then I quickly scan through my emails on my
phone.

8.00

After a lot of whining, we get everyone into the car … still
in their pyjamas. I throw an abaya over mine and jump in the car.

On the way to the garage I see kids already dressed,
presumably having eaten something, bags packed, and heading off to school.

How
do their mum’s do it?!?

Superwomen no doubt!

I can’t help feeling a little smug
though as we all drive home in our pyjamas for a second breakfast!

8.15

When get back from the garage, my husband leaves for work on his bike.

A is unusually grumpy so I feed him. The cats are complaining to, so I feed them.

8.25

I remember that I need to post something on Instagram that
morning. 

Whilst typing on my phone, K starts crying. So I  finish writing the photo caption one-handed, bobbing her up and down on my hip. 

The cats start meowing that they want
to go out, M starts reading out facts from a dinosaur book, and K is still
crying.

8.40

K starts to settle down, so I grab my chance to clean the
kitchen.

A falls over and hurts himself, M is still reading
aloud (very loudly) out of his dinosaur book and K starts crying.

I give up and take K
upstairs.

9.00 

After a clean nappy and nursing, K is asleep.

I finish cleaning up the kitchen.

9.10 

I take out our ‘workbox.’

We settle on the living room floor and read from the children’s Quran the story of Qarun.


Next M reads to me from his ‘I can read’ easy reader book, and A listens.

9.30

In the kitchen, I help A make a picture of a summer garden with
paper flowers and tissue paper.

Whilst M is doing some Math fact drills and
word problems
at the table, A goes an plays in the living room and I make another coffee.

9.40

I take the meat out of the freezer for tonight’s dinner
and write a to-do list for the day, making sure to write down the things I’ve
already done, and then tick them off!


K wakes up. I bring her downstairs, and find M is angry because
he can’t do one of the Maths questions.

After diffusing the situation, I take M upstairs to get changed. This makes him angry again!

10.30

All the kids are out of their pyjamas…I am not.

I go downstairs
to discover a cold cup of coffee that I forgot about.


I cut some fruit for the kids and then feed the cats again.

M picks up some of the tissue paper that A left on the kitchen
table and starts to make a ‘buttercup picture’. A wants to join in, so I have
to get more art supplies out.

A gets bored after two minutes and demands a
story. K starts to fuss.


At the kitchen table I read to them from yet another
dinosaur book, whilst nursing K.

11.05

We start getting ready to go out. We had planned to go
on a nature study today, but the weather is bad, so we’re going to an indoor
play centre
instead.

Not nearly as ‘wholesome’ but it’ll have to do.

11.15

Start getting the kids shoes on and get them into the car to leave.

11.35 

Actually leave.

We stay at the play centre for two hours.

The boys find a
group of kids to play with and I hardly see them whilst we are there,
except when they want their lunch!

I even get to read for ten minutes whilst K
naps in her car seat.

2.00 

Get back home.

A has fallen asleep in the car. K has not.

M goes straight
into the house, opens up his dinosaur books and starts reading and making
notes. I put a ‘Peter Pan’ audio-book on for him.


I get K out of the car, and leave her in her car seat,
whilst I carry A from the car to his bed.

K start crying. After nursing, I try to rock her to sleep.

It does not work.

After praying Dhuhr,  we come downstairs and I give her an apple slice to chew
on whilst I clean the kitchen again and empty the vegetable scraps into the
compost bin outside. 

2.45

M takes out his Atlas and starts seeing where in the
world dinosaur fossils were found.


                M:
“Mum, you know Kazakhstan?”
                me:
“Ummmm….”
                M: “Is
it under Russia?”
                me: “Ummmm…..”
                M:
“Yeah, I think it is.”
                me: “Ok
then.”

2.55

K starts to fuss, so I carry her on my hip and hang out
the wet laundry with one hand.

3.00 

M decides he wants to ‘do’ his calendar now.

3.20 

After changing K’s nappy, I put her in the door-bouncer
and start preparing dinner (lamb curry and rice).

Whilst that is cooking,
I wake up A.

3.30       

                me: “What
country do you want to learn about today?”

                M:
“Zambia.”
                me:
“Zambia?”
                M: “Yes”
                me:
“Which dinosaurs were from Zambia?”
                M:
“Actually, lets do Morocco.”
                me: “OK
then.” 

After collecting all our different atlases and social
studies books, I read from them the pages about Morocco whilst they draw and
colour the Moroccan flag.

We talk about Moroccan food, architecture, how the
families live, the capital city, the landscape and…what dinosaur fossils were
found there!

A day in Our Muslim Homeschool

M decides to start a notebook called ‘Dinosaurs around the world.’
I find a few short documentaries on Youtube about Morocco, and fold laundry
whilst the boys watch them.

4.30 

M plays ‘Dino Dan game’ online for having a ‘good
attitude today.’ A is happy watching.

4.45 

K nurses and falls asleep.

4.55 

I clean the kitchen again.

5.05 

K wakes up and happily watches the boys wrestling in
the living room.

Their dad comes home from work.

5.25 

Dinner is served.


The cats are hungry again.

5.40 

I clean the kitchen again.

6.00 

I make a cup of coffee again and fold laundry again.

6.10 

We all get in the car and head back to the garage to
pick up my husband’s car. The boys go in to ‘see how they fix the cars’.

6.40 

We get back. After changing A’s and K’s nappies, I
finish folding the laundry, and then tidy up all the toys in the living room.

The boys pretend to help and I’m too tired to make them.

6.55 

Once all three kids have had a bath and are in their pyjamas, I pray
Asr.

7.40 

Their dad occupies the boys in the living room,  so I hoover the upstairs
of the house.

8.00 

I feed K some baby porridge, nurse her and put her to
sleep. (Sigh…one down, two to go!) 

8.30 

I need another coffee, but its too late. I make a mint
tea and grab some biscuits instead.

8.45

After some gentle persuasion, I brush the boys teeth, read
them two stories, and sit with them till they fall asleep.

A day in our Muslim homeschool

10.00 

They are finally asleep. (phew!)

After praying Maghrib, I put away all
the folded clothes, tidy up all the toys that are littered around the house,
hoover the living room, and take a chicken out of the freezer for tomorrow’s
dinner.

10.40 

The rest of the evening is spent reading some Quran, praying and watching
Youtube.

Before bed, I scrawl down a quick to-do list for tomorrow, and throw a
load of clothes in the washing machine to wash overnight.

12.30 

Sleep!

Baby K wakes up twice in the night.
A wakes me up at 6.30am.

Writing this has made me realise that:
(1) I drink WAY too much coffee
(2) My cats eat a lot
(3) Half my life seems to be spent cleaning my kitchen!

How does your day look as a homeschooling mum? Is it similar to mine? I would love to know. Please leave me a comment below.


COMING SOON!

‘Our Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2015-2016’

Our curriculum choices for this coming academic year for Year 1 (kindergarten) and Preschool.

To make sure you don’t miss the next blog post, Subscribe to my mailing list.

For a daily look into Our Muslim Homeschool follow me on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

Thanks for visiting our blog!

Please remember us in your duaas.
Peace and Love.

Resources To Start Your Own MUSLIM HOMESCHOOL


Want to homeschool your children? Don’t know where to start?
In Part 3 of this series ‘Homeschooling:Getting Started,’ …

I will be listing useful resources for Muslim families
considering home education, or for families in the early stages of the process.

If you are looking for a source of INSPIRATION or practical advice on HOW TO DO IT, check out the links below.

Useful resources to start your Muslim homeschool
If you missed Part 1
or Part 2 in this series ‘Homeschooling: Getting Started’, please click the links
below.



All the resources in this list are linked to Amazon (affiliate links) or other relevant websites. 

Resources for New Homeschoolers


Books


National Curriculum – Parents Guide, UK

Educating Children: Classical Advice for Modern Times
by Imam Muhammad bin Ahmed al-Ramli, Abdul Aziz Ahmed (2013) Hardcover
Translated
by Shaykh Abdul Aziz Ahmed

Honey for a Child’s Heart
by Gladys Hunt
Written to encourage parents to read to their children. Contains excellent recommended reading lists.

The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home
by Susan Wise Bauer and Jessie Wise



They also have a website and a Youtube channel.
Home Learning Year by Year: How to Design a Homeschool Curriculum from Preschool Through High School
This book is based on the US Education system. Still very useful.

A Funny Kind of Education
by Ross Mountney
Memoir of a homeschooling family.


Muslim Homeschool Resources

Blogs


Blog are fantastic for giving you an insight of how REAL families homeschool and the different ways you can do it.
Bloglovin– Follow all the blogs you love from one place. Useful search engine. Just type in ‘homeschool’ or ‘Muslim Homeschool’ to find all the relevant blogs.

Websites

Great for learning the legal side of home education
Islamic Parenting: Raising upright children
Online course by Seekers Hub Global (free). Highly recommend.

Social Media


There are so many homeschoolers using social media to show how they home educate their kids. Many have coordinating blogs and Youtube channels.

Pinterest
Brilliant for getting ideas how to teach a topic or craft project ideas.

Facebook
Join your local HE group for updates on events.

Instagram
Supportive online community of like minded homeschoolers.

Youtube

There are so many videos out there of homeschool curriculum, homeschool room tours, etc. My favourite channels are:
JadyA
A Farmhouse Full
Erica Arndt

Local Home Ed group



As I mentioned before, you can find your local group of homeschoolers on Facebook. Another place you can look is Home Education in the UK who have a list of all the homeschooling groups around the country with contact details. Surrounding you and your children with like-minded people is so important, especially in the beginning. Go along to one of the group’s social events and ask a lot of questions. That’s what I did!

Starting this ‘journey’ is such an exciting time. The main advice I would give is learn as much as you can about home education, stay flexible, and don’t be disheartened if things don’t go as planned. It’s still early days!

We are so blessed to have this opportunity to stay home and educate our children. Alhumdulillah!

For more experienced home educators: What resources would
you recommend for a newbie homeschooler? Please share with us in the comments below.

Next in this series:


You think you want to homeschool your children? See what it really means to home educate! This is how a real Muslim family does it! CLICK HERE

To make sure you don’t miss the next in the series please Subscribe to my mailing list.

For a look into Our Muslim Homeschool follow me on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

Click HERE to see Part 2 in the series: Homeschooling: Is it really for me? Advantages and Disadvantages of Home Education

Homeschooling getting started

If you have any questions, please leave me a comment below and I will do my best to answer them insha’Allah.

Please remember us in your duaas.
Peace and Love.

HOME EDUCATION: Is it really for me?

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Homeschooling

Do you like the idea of homeschooling, but are not sure what
it will entail? What does home education really mean in a practical real life
situation? How do I know if it will be right for us?

This article will highlight some of the pros and cons of
homeschooling so you can make an informed decision.

Muslim Homeschool
You will need to decide personally how important each
positive or negative is to you. This will depend on your character, your
situation and your child. Homeschooling is a fantastic option, but it is not
for everyone. I hope this article helps you to decide if it is for you.

If you missed Part 1 in this series: What is Homeschooling? A guide to what home education is, could be and definitely is not! please click HERE

PROS

 
Control
Home education gives you almost complete control over WHAT
your child is learning and HOW they are learning it. It also means parents can control what your child is exposed to: friends,  books, music, peer
pressure, bullying, religious teaching to name a few.
Whilst there is some truth in the argument that children
need to learn the social skills to deal with these negative things, there is a lot of
harm that can be done to a child, particularly to his character, when exposed
to them on a daily basis.
Flexibility
 
Homeschooling allows you to schedule school around you family’s needs, and not schedule the
family needs around school.
For us this means we rarely do formal school on a Friday as it is
our Sabbath. Instead, that time is spent reading Islamic children’s books,
doing an Islamic craft, or something like that. When they are older, we will use that time to go to the mosque for Jummah too insha’Allah.

Muslim Homeschool
As a home educator, you have complete flexibility over what
you are teaching you child. You can add in subject that they wouldn’t be
learning at school (e.g. Arabic) and disregard those subjects you find
inappropriate (e.g. sex education).

If the curriculum you buy is not working
for your child, you can switch to another one in the middle of the year. Or if
he is not understanding a concept well, you can go back and revisit it. If your
child is gifted in a topic, you can provide her with more challenging material
that she would not get at school.

Home schooling also give children the opportunity to pursue
their talents that would otherwise be difficult if they were at school 6-8
hours a day. If you child is a talented tennis player, you can fit his school
work in around his sports lessons. The same can be said for any talent or
interest that your kid may have.
You can book holidays in ‘term-time’ and benefit from
cheaper rates! You can stop and start school whenever you need to, as long as
your child learning is not interrupted too much. For example, over Ramadan, we
do very little formal schooling, but will make up for lost time over the
summer.
Better exam results
 
It has been shown in studies in the US that children who are
home educated performed better
on standardized testing, than those in
mainstream education [1].
One reason for this is you are providing you child with
one-to-one tuition for every subject, every day, rather than sharing the
attention of the teacher with thirty-five other kids. You will be tailoring the
way to teach each subject to the unique way your child learns. You will be
pushing him when he finds something easy, and going back when a concept is not
understood. So its hardly surprising really that home-educated kids are doing
so well!
Family Benefits
Spending all that time together, and sharing all those
memories inevitably brings a family closer together, especially the bond
between siblings.
Muslim Homeschool
No school runs!

I know this sounds silly, but listen!

Imagine allowing your children to wake up whenever they
naturally get up, having a relaxed breakfast, and not having to ‘rush rush
rush’ to get everyone ready and out the door! No waiting in traffic, no
stressing about uniforms, or thinking about packed lunches, washing sports
kits, remembering book bags or signing forms. Instead mornings are just…EASY!

CONS

 
Responsibility
This is the big one that everyone fears! Instead of handing
over the responsibility for your child’s education to a group of strangers, YOU
are completely responsible. If they don’t do well academically or personally,
the responsibility is on you.

Personally, I think even if your child was at school, you
are still entirely responsible. The day you had your baby, the day Allah
entrusted that soul into your care, was when you became responsible and
accountable for the education of your child.
 
Parental Sacrifice
Homeschooling your children will almost always require one
parent to put their career on hold. Therefore is usually means that home
educating families have to live off one-income alone.
 
Other people’s
reactions
Since homeschooling is almost completely unheard of in the
UK, most people are either confused or shocked when you say that the kids are
homeschooled. Most will make the assumption that you are depriving your kids in
some way.
But sometimes people will surprise you with positive
comments like, ‘Aren’t your kids lucky!’ Or ‘I wish we’d thought of that!’
 
The kids are ALWAYS
there!
Of course, most of the time, I view this are a good thing. I
love their company. Homeschooling would be a very difficult thing if I did not.
But there are days, that all mums go through, when you just ‘need a break.’ But
when you homeschool, there is no break from the kids…..EVER!

There are times when it can be emotionally very draining, and it is not uncommon for mum’s to suffer from ‘burnout’ if they don’t take steps to avoid it.

 
Your house will never
be tidy
So if the kids are always home, then it follows that it will
always be a mess! That, in addition to the fact that, you will have to find
space for all the extra books, science experiments, art supplies, and all other
manner of ‘educational resources’ that will inevitably end up littering every
available surface. Your home will never be a show home, but it will be filled
with memories that are (in my opinion) worth so much more.
 
Keep kids active
It will be your responsibility to make sure the kids stay
fit and healthy. At school children do sports at least three times a week and
run around in breaks etc. If they are not attending school, you need to find
ways to keep them active. Choose something that your child enjoys. Don’t force
them to do a sport they dislike, just because their peers at school are doing
it. Think outside the box. Hiking, skating, rock climbing are just as good
forms of exercise as any organised sport.

Muslim Homeschool

 

 
Requires planning
Even if you have a very relaxed take on home education, you
will still need to have some level of organisation and planning. Personally, I
like to have the year planned out in general terms, and then plan in detail just
one month ahead of time.
Planning out what subjects you will cover and how you will
‘teach’ these subjects does not need to be complicated. For those overwhelmed
by all the choices, or concerned that they won’t cover ‘everything they need
to,’ should consider a boxed curriculum. These are more expensive, but contain
all the texts you need for every subject, all the worksheets and even a
timetable to follow. There are numerous websites and books available, most from
USA, that outline what should be covered and when. I will cover my recommendations
the next post in the series.
 
You have to ‘find’
friends/ social opportunities
If you yourself are very shy or suffer with social anxiety,
this may find this aspect of homeschooling difficult. You will need to ‘get out
there’ to give your children opportunities to meet new people and make friends.
But consider this negative point to also be a positive one.
You can encourage friendships for your child that you feel may benefit him, and
limit friendships with kids who might be a ‘bad influence.’ If done well and
with thought, your child will know how to interact comfortably with children of
all ages, races and different backgrounds to their own. Something that no
school can offer.
 
Cost
Homeschooling can be more expensive than sending you child
to school. You will need to buy things that ordinarily he would get for free at
school.
However, there are curriculum choices for every budget and
if you spend wisely, it doesn’t need to break the bank. Just remember that
peer-pressure itself can be very expensive and think of all the money you’ll be
saving by not having to buy the lastest toy, shoes, clothes, video game or
mobile phone for your child. Or going to every classmate’s birthday party,
class Christmas presents and other school events.

http://www.risk.net/risk-magazine/news/2339013/corporate-hedgers-fear-otc-liquidity-drain
There are so many free resources online, as well as
homeschooling communities that sell things second-hand once their child has
finished with them. So don’t be put off by the cost of homeeducation, it can be
done to within your budget.
 
Local Education
Authority
You may be asked for a home visit from an LEA official or
school nurse, or be asked to provide some kind of written information. I would
recommend dealing with these authorities with a touch of caution, and do your
research on what information you need to give them by law, and what you do not.
 
Further Education
If you decide to put your child into school at a later date,
you may find it difficult to get them a place in the ‘best’ schools.
You also need to consider University. Universities in the UK
do accept homeschooled kids, but it will require you as a parent, to correspond
directly with the university early on, to find out what records need to be kept
and what other requirements they may have. Like with all things in homeshooling,
the responsibility is with you and it just requires a little more planning. You
may want to consider sending you kid to a university in the United States, where
colleges are more familiar with home education and some actually now prefer
home educated students [2].

So now you’ve heard the truth. You know the main advantages
and disadvantages of homeschooling and I hope this helps you to make a decision
on whether to home educate your child.

Next in this series:



A guide to Books, websites and other resources that I have found useful and those that I could not be without!

To make sure you don’t miss the next in the series please Subscribe to my mailing list.

For a sneak peek into Our Muslim Homeschool follow me on Instagram,
Twitter or Facebook.

If you have any questions, please leave me a comment below and I will do my best to answer them insha’Allah.

Please remember us in your duaas.
Peace and Love.

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