Book Reviews

Homeschool Favourites | August 2016

We have officially started school again and we’re having a great time! 

Although having a break is so important, we really missed the routine and structure that our homeschooling brings to our day!

I’m so happy to be sharing some exciting new books and educational resources that we’ve been enjoying this month in Our Muslim Homeschool. 

Muslim Homeschool August Favourites

Homeschool Favourites | August 2016

For an overview of all the products mentioned, and to see them in more detail

WATCH THIS VIDEO!

Eastcolight Human Torso Set

This model of the human body has been such a hit with the children! 

They love seeing where all the organs and bones go… taking it apart, and putting it back together again. 

Muslim Homeschool Favourites Human Model

It’s a fantastic hands-on way of teaching anatomy, and it has really got them excited to learn more about the human body.

Muslim Homeschool August favourites Eastcolight human torso

It also comes with fact cards, a poster, a manual and a calorie-counting wheel. To be honest, the kids haven’t used any of these extra bits yet. They’re too interested in the model itself! 

Pocketful of Pinecones

This book continues to inspire me every time I read from it! 

This is  a book for homeschool mums, or anyone who is interested in knowing more about the Charlotte Mason method of home-education. 

Muslim Homeschool Favourites Pocketful of Pinecones

It is a fictitious journal of a homeschooling mother based in the U.S.A. around 100 years ago. She decides to take her children out of school and, with the help of only one of Charlotte Mason’s books, she begin homeschooling her children.

There is a lot of focus on nature study and on “mother culture” in this book. 
For more information on “Mother Culture” CLICK HERE.

The chapters are short and perfect for busy mums who don’t have time to read as much as they would like. 

This has to be one of the most inspiring books I have ever read, and I can see myself re-reading over and over again! 

I enjoyed it so much, I have already purchased two more from the same author:

iPray Salah Pad

My eldest son has really enjoyed using this interactive toy to learn how to pray. Although he used to enjoy praying with me, he seems to have entered in new “phase” where he wants to learn independently…and this even includes the Salah (prayer)!
He has benefited immensely from this toy. The illustrations show him what to do, and when you press on them, he hears what he is supposed to say. He loves it!
In addition to the prayer, it also teaches the wudu, the athaan, and many more duaas. 
Muslim Homeschool Favourites iPray Salah Pad
You can buy it in PINK or BLUE and is available to purchase from Ibraheem Toyhouse

Aishah Learns To Bake

This is an endearing story about a little girl called Aishah who wants to bake! Her mother uses this opportunity to teach Aishah about where all the ingredients come from

It’s a lovely way to show children how blessed they are to have food, and to be grateful for it. It also introduces children to the foods mentioned in the Quran and the name of Allah “ar-Razzaq,” (the Provider).
Muslim Homeschool Favourites Aisha Learns to Bake
The illustrations are clever and cute (much like Aishah), and my boys were laughing the whole way through the story!
We enjoyed the story so much, we decided to make the same honey and date cupcakes that Aishah and her mum made. There is a recipe in the back of the book. They turned really good mash’Allah!


Nature Study

Finally, although it’s not a “tangible” thing, I really wanted to share how much we’ve been enjoying our nature walks this month. 

The weather has been a little unpredictable, but it hasn’t stopped us! We’ve really been making the most the woodlands and parks around us.

Muslim Homeschool Favourites Nature Walks

Not only do my children benefit from our time outdoors, but I find that I personally need that time away from the home to unwind and reflect

Muslim Homeschool Favourites Nature Walks

If you don’t already, I would highly recommend that you schedule some outdoor time into your homeschool routine. It has brought so much balance and peace to our family. Subhanullah!

GIVEAWAY!

It’s Giveaway time!

Muslim HOmeschool Favourites Giveaway
This August I am excited to share TWO of my favorites with one of you!!!

I will be giving away:
– One copy of Aishah Learns To Bake (RRP: £5.57)- One iPray Salah Pad in Pink (RRP: £17.00)
The August 2016 Favourites Giveaway will run until Wednesday 24th August 2016 at 12AM GMT

The giveaway is open Internationally

All entrants under the age of 18 must have parental permission to enter.

Please aware that if entering overseas, you may be liable to pay customs tax (or the equivalent), so please check beforehand.
You can enter by following the directions in the Rafflecopter widget posted below (click HERE is you would like to know more about Rafflecopter). 

I’ll announce the winners on THIS blog post and contact them directly through email. 
The winner has 24 hours to respond, otherwise I will have to select another winner.

I hope you enjoyed seeing what we’ve been enjoying in our homeschool this month. 

I’d love to hear about what your family has been using this August 🙂
Please let us all know in the comments below.

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.

See you next month insha’Allah!

In need of your duaas.

Peace and Love xx

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Ramadan Children’s Books

It is Ramadan! This month in Our Muslim Homeschool we have been enjoying a wide variety of Muslim children’s books, to teach the children about Ramadan and Eid.

Muslim children’s literature is an easy and fun way to introduce important concepts in Islam; such as fasting, tawheed, sincerity, amongst others, to children from a young age.

Ramadan books for children

This blogpost contains affiliate links. See Disclaimer for more information.

I strongly believe that the stories we tell our children leave an imprint on their hearts and memories, impacting them in later years. What can be better than to read books to them with beautiful meanings and strong morals.

Here are some of the Ramadan children’s books that we have been reading aloud in our homeschool!

For a quick look at which books we have been reading in Ramadan,

WATCH THIS VIDEO:

Ramadan Children’s Books

Five Prayers Each Day by Elizabeth Lymer

This charming rhyming story teaches toddlers to count up to five using the Five Daily Prayers (Salaah). It’s short but very sweet!
” One, two, three, four, five prayers each day that we’re alive…”
Suitable for ages 1-3

 

Angels and Rainbows by Elizabeth Lymer and Brooke Alam

This is a touching story about a girl who loves to pray Fajr with her father, but is scared of the dark. Her dad teaches her some words (dhikr) that she can say to invite the Angels and their light (Noor) into her home.
The illustrations in this book are stunning. It is also worth noting that the depictions of people do not have facial features.
I would recommend this book for children ages 4-9.
 

 

Under the Ramadan Moon by Sylvia Whitman

This lyrical story introduces children to the excitment of Ramadan by focusing on the family rituals and events that take place.
This book is suitable for children aged 3-5.
 

 

The Amazing Calendar Quilt by Sheikh Zubia Imami

This book teaches children about months of the Islamic calendar, teaching the names and of their significance Islamically.
Unfortunately this book is out of print, but you can find it second-hand if you’re willing to hunt around!
I would recommend it for children aged 5+.

 

Ramadan Moon by Na’ima B. Robert

By far, this is the most well-known of all the books I have mentioned. It introduces Ramadan beautifully, in all its wonder and awe, to children. The story follows a family through Ramadan, from one moon to the next, capturing their excitement and feelings.
The illustrations in this book are stunning.
This book is suitable for children aged 4-9.
 

 

Night of the Moon by Hena Khan

Night of the Moon is the story of a Pakistani-American girl who watches the moon’s phases, and talks about all her different experiences during Ramadan.
The illustrations are spectacular and remind me of traditional Islamic art, with lots of geometric patterns and vibrant colours.
I would recommend this book for children aged 3-9.

 

Sweet Dates to Eat by Jonny Zucker

This short and simple story introduces young children to Ramadan and Eid. It shows the family in the mosque, eating iftar, and celebrating Eid.
The illustrations are very cute and colourful!
Suitable for children aged 2-4 years-old.

 

An Eid for Everyone by Hina Islam

This is a story about several children from different families, and their experiences on Eid day. The book focuses on remembering the poor on that day, and shows the children giving out Eid gifts to poorer families in their community.
This book is suitable for children aged 3-5.
 
 

 

 

 
 
I hope you got some new ideas and inspiration from this blog post. Perhaps you found some new books for your children here.
 
What books do your children enjoy reading in Ramadan?
Do they have a favourite?
Please share with us in the comments below. I’d love to hear about other Ramadan books!
 
 
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.

Please remember us in your duaas.

 
Peace and Love,

Ramadan Books for children

.

Book Review | Elizabeth Lymer

This review will be looking at the work of a British Muslimah
author, Elizabeth Lymer, who has written numerous works of Islamic children’s
literature
.

Muslim Children Book Review: Elizabeth Lymer
It is so exciting to see more and more Muslim children’s
books
available for the English-speaking market. In my experience, there is a
lot of children’s literature available for Muslim kids, but so much of it is
dry and uninspiring.

Fear not… Elizabeth Lymer has brought a whimsy and charm
back into Muslim Children’s Books!

These books are beautiful! The intention behind them, and sincerity
of the author, shines through. They are a testimony to how talented and creative
our Muslim sisters are…and that makes me so happy!

There is a very whimsical sweetness in the way she writes and in what she chooses to write about which is utterly charming!

The messages and stories these books tell have real worth
and merit, and are far more deserving of a place on your bookcase, than any of
the ‘modern fluff’ that is so readily available today.

I will be reviewing three books written by Elizabeth Lymer:

Hector Hectricity and the Missing Socks,
Muslim Lullabies &
Baby Traveller Bismillah
.


So let’s get started!

Hector Hectricity and the Missing Socks

This sweet story is about a family who find that their socks
keep going missing, and about how they find the monster that is taking them. It
teaches children to first make duaa to Allah (swt) and then ask others for
help.

It is a funny and silly story that kids will love; but underneath the
silliness is a really important lesson about turning to Allah (swt) and
trusting in Him.

It also has a knitting pattern in the back in case anyone
fancies knitting themselves some rainbow socks!

Elizabeth Lymer Review
Enjoying Hector Hectricity!

I would recommend this book for children aged 2-5.

This book has just launched! You can purchase a copy of this book from the IHRC Shop
or Amazon 

Muslim Lullabies

In this collection, Elizabeth has written new
Islamically-themed lyrics
to well-known English lullabies.

 All the lullabies have themes from the Quran within them and teach bedtime practices from the Sunnah.

It is such a wonderful experience to sing beautiful songs of dhikr to send your baby to sleep. It has been so special to sing these lullabies to my children and create those magical memories together.

One of my favourites
is:

 Hush Now Habibty (To the tune of Rock-a-bye, Baby)

“Hush now, Habibty,
Let yourself rest,
Snug in du’as
That you will be blessed,
Guarded from evil
Of the dark hours,
By Allah’s protection
And perfect power.

If you’re not sure how the tune is supposed to sound, Elizabeth Lymer has also produced an accompanying video on Youtube to help!


However, if you are not familiar with English children’s lullabies, then I
think you would struggle to use this book. Although if you live in the U.S. Muslim Lullabies is also available to buy on Audio CD.

The book itself is dedicated to sister Maria Zain, who passed away in 2014, along with a link to help support the six children she left behind.

Elizabeth Lymer Review
They got the giggles!!!
I sincerely recommend this book to anyone with young children (under 3’s); or if you know someone who is pregnant, this would make a fabulous gift for their new baby.

This book would be a great addition to your home library and hopefully a means of creating beautiful memories with your children.

If you would like to purchase a copy of this book CLICK HERE

Baby Traveller Bismillah

This simple book is aimed at babies aged newborn-18months.
It introduces children to the five senses, to different modes of transport, and
to dhikr.


The word Allah is repeated frequently throughout the book. I hope that my baby will be saying Allah soon …because of this book!

The words
our children hear, and the stories we read them, do leave a lasting impression.
I am certain that hearing this book, and the dhikr it contains, will impact
positively
on her and leave a lasting imprint on her heart…insha’Allah.

To purchase this book:
UK customers CLICK HERE
US customers CLICK HERE 

Elizabeth Lymer Review
Enjoying his new book!

I’m getting a bit emotional writing this review because I really feel
like Elizabeth Lymer has gifted our children something incredible…Something
that will truly enrich their lives
. It is such a blessing…May Allah reward her!

For more information about Elizabeth Lymer and the numerous books she has written, CLICK HERE to visit her website.


Thank you so much for visiting our blog. 

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 insha’Allah.

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.


In need of your duaas.

Peace and Love.

Disclaimer: This review was NOT sponsored. Although Elizabeth Lymer sent me  complimentary copies of these books, all opinions expressed are genuine!


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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! 

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