Thursday, August 12, 2010



Update: go here for a 2011 post on Ramadan and Eid Al-Fitr               Today is the first day of Ramadan.  Ramadan lasts for one month and is followed by the Eid celebration which is a public holiday over a few days.  This year the Ministry of Education has decreed that the schools will remain closed for the Holy month of Ramadan which makes the summer break 9 weeks long for the teachers and 11 weeks for the children.   As Ramadan and Eid will be finished by the time the children start school, I won't be covering any Ramadan activities, however, I thought I might add a few of the ideas and links from last year.

is an exquisitely illustrated book that simply and clearly gives a child's eye view of Ramadan.  I was planning to use the illustrations this year to inspire the children to create paper collages.  It would also be a great book for supporting a topic on the phases of the moon.
Ramadan Moon
Almost all of the Muslims here in Dubai fast during the day for the month of Ramadan - no food, no drinks, no water.  Many of the shops don't open until 12 noon and most of the cafes, restaurants and fast food eateries are closed during the day until sunset.  Sunset is the time for 'Iftar' - the breaking of the fast.  A traditional way to break fast is to nibble on dates and take water or tea.  The dates provide energy without being too difficult to digest.  
There are many different types of dates and I bought in a selection for the children to sample.  They discussed the taste and texture and which they liked the most. They plotted their favourite on a graph that also had an option for 'don't like dates!'

Lanterns seems to be a feature of so many cultural celebrations and events and Ramadan is no exception - the arabic lantern is called Fanooz.  The children made simple paper lanterns.  It was the beginning of the school year and the activity was excelletn for allowing us to get a good idea of where each child was at in terms of fine motor development and the ability to follow simple instructions.  
The children really enjoyed this presentation from the British Council on the interactive whiteboard.


Juliet Robertson said...

Hi Shar

I like this post - we get such dry information generally over here about Muslim traditions and it's nice to read about Ramadan in a friendly interesting way.

shar said...

Thanks Juliet. The spiritual aspect of Ramadan is really quite lovely and as a non Muslim I am discovering a little more each year.

Centers and Circle Time said...

I've gained some knowledge:) Thanks for sharing:)