8 Tips for Muslim Parents: Introducing Ramadan Practices to Children

by 24 February 20240 comments

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ

In the name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

Navigating Ramadan as an adult can be challenging on its own, but understanding it from a child’s perspective adds another layer of complexity. While I’m not yet a parent myself, I’ve always admired the dedication it takes to care for and raise children. Fortunately, the team at Muslim Pro & Qalbox includes many experienced parents who have generously shared their personal parenting tips and insights, helping me understand how to make Ramadan meaningful for our little ones.

In this article, we’ll explore eight effective tips and personal stories from the parents from the Muslim Pro & Qalbox team. From creating a welcoming environment to celebrating achievements, these tips will help families create lasting memories during this special month. Insha’Allah.

1. Create a Fun Ramadan Environment

To immerse your home in the joyful ambiance of Ramadan, consider engaging in activities that foster excitement and anticipation, especially for children. Alongside the spiritual practices, incorporate elements that evoke the essence of the holy month. Sakeef, for instance, understands the significance of making religious observances enjoyable for his daughter, Khadija. At just 4 years old, Khadija eagerly embraces Ramadan traditions as they are made fun for her.

8 Tips for Muslim Parents: Introducing Ramadan Practices to Children

Rather than delving into intricate explanations, Sakeef simplifies the concept of fasting for Khadija. Throughout the day, he involves her in tracking her fasts (Roza). They count the time between her meals, which typically amounts to about three fasts per day. Khadija’s face lights up with joy as she realizes she has observed “more fasts” than her parents. This interactive approach not only nurtures Khadija’s understanding of fasting but also instills a sense of accomplishment in her young heart.

By infusing the atmosphere with warmth and excitement, families can create lasting memories and reinforce the significance of Ramadan in the hearts of their children.

2. Explain Religious Practices According to Their Age

Taking the time to explain religious practices such as fasting, praying, and reading the Quran in simple terms is crucial, especially for children. It is important that we make these concepts relatable and digestible to them, engaging in meaningful conversations and encouraging them to ask questions to explore further.

Isamuddin, our UX Designer, shares his approach to introducing fasting to his 2-year-old son: “Since my child is still very young, we introduce the concept of not eating from dusk till dawn because it is a command by Allah, as written in the Quran. As he is too young to grasp the concept of empathy for the less fortunate, we can’t instill that in him yet.”

Mashel, our Product Manager, echoes the sentiment when introducing fasting to her toddler: “As our boy is still a toddler, we generally share with him the actions of ibadah when we’re performing it. When I repay my qada’ fast during the weekends and he sees that I’m not eating during mealtime, I explain to him that mummy’s fasting and can’t eat, just like in Ramadan (Allah’s favorite month). On top of that, being able to eat is a blessing, and that’s also why we fast – to empathize with the less fortunate. Just like how Mummy tells him not to waste milk and food because baby goats and poor kids will cry when you waste what you’re blessed with!”

For slightly older children, they may understand things better. Our Content Operations Executive, Hafizah, who used to teach kids between the ages of 6 to 10 years old, recommends: “Share about the upcoming month of Ramadan and what to expect, such as the concept of fasting from sunrise to sunset, refrain from being angry and explaining why we should increase in doing good deeds for this month. I will also share why certain people are excused from fasting, including young children such as them. However, if they wish to give fasting a try, I will encourage them to start with half a day, or just refrain from eating.”

3. Involve Kids in Ramadan Preparations

Nahbila understands the importance of actively engaging her children in Ramadan preparations to deepen their understanding and appreciation for the holy month. From a young age, she introduces the concept of fasting to her children, emphasizing its significance in bringing them closer to Allah, fostering empathy for the less fortunate, teaching self-discipline, and promoting physical health benefits.

To make Ramadan meaningful for her children, Nahbila involves them in various activities, including preparing iftar meals and decorating their home. By participating in these tasks, her children feel valued and enthusiastic about Ramadan. Additionally, Nahbila encourages her children to engage in prayers and gradually begin fasting as they grow older.

8 Tips for Muslim Parents: Introducing Ramadan Practices to Children

Throughout their fasting journey, Nahbila emphasizes the importance of patience. She suggests starting with shorter fasting periods and provides continuous support and encouragement. Assuring her children that fasting becomes easier with practice, she leads by example, igniting their curiosity and interest in the beautiful traditions of Ramadan.

4. Keep a Simple Daily Ramadan Routine

Maintaining a routine is essential for helping children grasp the significance of the holy month. We adhere to a structured schedule during Ramadan to provide our kids with a sense of familiarity and understanding. This routine includes waking up early for sahur, enjoying iftar as a family, and dedicating time for prayers and Quran reading. By following this routine, our children feel secure and develop a deeper appreciation for Ramadan. We also allocate time for engaging family activities and discussions centered around Ramadan-related topics.

Farzana, our Graphic Designer, shares her approach to introducing Ramadan to her young daughter. She explains, “My daughter does not quite understand the concept of fasting yet, since she’s still very young (3+yo). We introduced the concept of Ramadan by prepping her outside of Ramadan – praying Jemaah & reciting dua together. She would watch, imitate, and finally join us. We also create Ramadan vibes by introducing her to dates (she loves them), and having Iftar with families.” 

This approach emphasizes gradual exposure and involvement, allowing her daughter to familiarize and immerse herself in in Ramadan traditions at her own pace while fostering a sense of connection to the spiritual practices of the month.

 

5. Encourage Good Intentions and Acts of Kindness

In the spirit of Ramadan, nurturing kindness and compassion among children is paramount. Emphasize the importance of sharing, helping around the house, and treating others with respect. These simple, yet profound acts instill a sense of empathy and consideration for others.

Junaidah also reflects on her son’s journey of expressing eagerness to fast during Ramadan at the mere age of six years old. Despite initial reservations, she embraced his enthusiasm, introducing fasting gradually and participating in community events together. Through these gestures, she cultivates a spirit of generosity and compassion, reinforcing the values of giving and empathy within her household.

8 Tips for Muslim Parents: Introducing Ramadan Practices to Children

Throughout their fasting experience, Junaidah emphasizes the deeper spiritual lessons of Ramadan. She teaches her son about self-control, maintaining good intentions, and expressing gratitude for blessings, nurturing his understanding of the sacred significance of the holy month. As a parent, Junaidah celebrates the sincerity and efforts of her child during Ramadan, recognizing the profound impact of fostering kindness and compassion in shaping his character and spiritual growth.

6. Use Visual Learning Aids To Help Kids Understand

Introducing visual learning aids can significantly enhance children’s understanding of Ramadan and Islam. Whenever I babysit my nieces or nephews, I make it a point to switch on educational shows that they can learn something from. As an employee, I have witnessed the impact of Qalbox since its launch, but as a user and a Muslim, I’m delighted to have such convenience from the palm of my hand — or iPad when I’m letting my nephew watch the shows!

We enjoy watching fun animations like “Islam For Kids” or “NoorKids Ramadan Camp” on Qalbox, which make learning about Islam and Ramadan enjoyable and easy to understand. These shows not only entertain but also educate, providing valuable insights into the significance of Ramadan and its teachings. Watching these shows together is a wonderful way to bond as a family while reinforcing the core principles of Ramadan.

7. Take It One Step At A Time

Talk to our kids about Ramadan in words they can understand and let them try it out for themselves willingly, instead of forcing them to do something they are unfamiliar with. Siraj understands the importance of gradually introducing the concept of fasting to his children. Instead of overwhelming them with complex explanations, Siraj adopts a progressive approach to help his children comprehend and embrace the essence of fasting.

He begins by talking to his kids about Ramadan in words they can understand, making the concept relatable and accessible to them. To allow his children to experience fasting firsthand, Siraj lets them try it out for themselves in a gradual manner. Siraj’s approach involves starting with shorter fasting periods, such as waking up for sahur and fasting for just half of the day. His children then break their fast during Zuhur. 

8 Tips for Muslim Parents: Introducing Ramadan Practices to Children

As Ramadan progresses, Siraj gradually increases the duration of their fasts, moving from half a day to a full day of fasting. This gradual progression allows his children to adapt to fasting with ease and confidence, fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation for this sacred practice. InshaAllah.

8. Celebrate Kids’ Achievements

Celebrating their little milestones and achievements during Ramadan is an important aspect of nurturing their growth and motivation. We acknowledge and praise their accomplishments, whether it’s fasting for the first time, learning a new Quran verse, or contributing to household chores. By recognizing their efforts, we instill a sense of pride and encourage them to continue their positive actions. Additionally, we involve them in planning special activities and outings to commemorate their achievements.

Our Assistant PR Manager, Zahidah, shares a valuable insight, stating, “We hype up my son’s efforts to try to fast throughout the month. We have a Ramadan calendar that he helps design, and for each day he fasts, we paste a sticker. If he collects a month’s worth of stickers, we will reward him with a big toy of his choice. On days when he doesn’t fast, we will still award him with a half sticker because it’s all about affirming his efforts when teaching and training them how to fast at this age!” This approach reinforces his motivation and commitment to fasting while affirming his progress and dedication at such a young age.

 

Throughout this article, we’ve explored 8 effective tips and personal anecdotes generously shared by parents from our team at Muslim Pro & Qalbox. From cultivating a warm and inviting atmosphere to celebrating their milestones, I am truly thankful to these parents for offering invaluable guidance in engaging children in Ramadan activities and fostering their understanding of Islamic traditions.

I hope the wisdom and experiences shared here have resonated with you, offering valuable insights into navigating Ramadan with children. Your feedback and engagement are invaluable, so please share your thoughts in the comments section below! I look forward to reading them, Insha’Allah.

Let us continue to explore and embrace the features within Muslim Pro & Qalbox, empowering us to learn and grow together with our children during this blessed season.

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About The Author

Nurul Mimsy

Nurul is from the Muslim Pro team based in Singapore. As the editor of the Muslim Pro Blog, she is dedicated to ensuring that our content is accessible to many. With a passion for halal food and Muslim-friendly travel experiences, she enjoys being a travel blogger and content creator in her free time. Her commitment to excellence and inclusivity drives her work as she strives to connect and empower individuals within the global Muslim community.

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