Pre Ramadan reflection #1 Homeschool

Asalamu alaykum wa rahmtaullahi wa barakatu sisters

Ramadan is just days away, and im sure like many of you, I’ve begun to reevaluate our year.

Where has the time flown since last Ramadan?
What have I achieved since last Ramadan?
Did I manage to keep up with the goals I set myself?
Did I fall back into old habits?

But in today’s post, I wanted to specifically discuss some thoughts that have been surfacing in my mind in regards to homeschooling.  Its a huge part of my life, and one that consumes a lot of my time, energy, and day to day focus.  Its one of my biggest priorities, and its one that im always thinking about because it concerns the well-being of my children.

So, when I sit back and reflect on it, I find myself feeling like im on a rollercoaster. We have had a shorter school year than normal this year and that alone is enough to cause panic.

I stare at the unfinished textbooks, the stack of books I didn’t get around to read,  realising that our Arabic journey is going slower than what I wanted and that my youngest is still interested in playing with his cars and still hasn’t shown any interest in phonics, while other 4-year-olds are already starting to read.

The panic starts to creep in…

I begin to become anxious. The questions that originally surfaced, now lead to a barrage of more questions…

Have I done enough?
Do I know what im doing?!
Can I actually educate my children?
Why don’t my children know x, y and z yet?
Are my kids behind?
Why do I have imperfect days, when others don’t seem to?
Am I depriving my children of a ‘proper education’?

But I’ve realised that all these fears crop up because my measure of a successful homeschool year gets distorted over the year, and the intention that I had, becomes hazy. I begin to measure success at surface level, limiting my children’s education to mere pen and paper when educating my children is so much deeper…

And so I begin to curb my thoughts, and in doing so my reflection questions begin to change…

Are my children growing up being aware of Allaah and His Greatness?
Is the sunnah interwoven in my children’s’ every day lives?
Do my kids understand the purpose of life?
What relationship do my children have with The Noble Qur’an?
Do my children realise the importance of seeking knowledge and are they actively doing so?
How are their manners, first and foremost with their Creator and then others around them?
Are my children growing up to be good citizens, are they caring and compassionate individuals?
How is the relationship between me and my children, is it one of love, respect and communication?
Do our ‘bad’ homeschool days really outweigh the ‘good’ days?
Are we still HOMEschooling or homeSCHOOLING?

I start off by reminding myself…

It is narrated on the authority of Amir al-Mu’minin (Leader of the Believers), Abu Hafs ‘Umar bin al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him), who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), say: “Actions are according to intentions, and everyone will get what was intended. Whoever migrates with an intention for Allah and His messenger, the migration will be for the sake of Allah and his Messenger. And whoever migrates for worldly gain or to marry a woman, then his migration will be for the sake of whatever he migrated for.” Related by Bukhari & Muslim

My panic slowly begins to settle…

See, if my intention to educate my children is pure and done in the correct way, then surely the effort, time and sacrifice have been worth it. And if im able to see some progress in the questions that I’ve just asked myself, it becomes clear to me that we’re doing ok…

That isn’t to say that the more academic side of learning is not to be evaluated. But for me, that’s the second half of the questionnaire, not the first.  These things don’t hold weight if I haven’t bothered with building the foundation for my children because without it I have set my kids up to fail.

So now as I continue my reflection, and list the pros and cons of our year, I know where to start. Now I can begin to reflect on which areas my children need to work on, slowly working my way through the questionnaire.

And as the list of areas of improvement begins to grow, my yearning for Ramadan increases, because I know Im in need of this month of mercy to set myself up to continue on this journey of educating my children.

May Allah allow us to witness Ramadan, Ameen.

Share your homeschool reflections below, I’d love to know how you are preparing for Ramadan. 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Umm is a title, not an eraser.

Asalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu my dear sisters

I hope that the title of this post has encapsulated what I wanted to talk about today.

Let me begin by reminding myself and you that motherhood is beautiful, a blessing from Allah, and a trust from Him. This post is not intended to come across as a complaint but rather to offer a supportive hand to my dear sisters.

Alhamdulillah, the majority of our days are joy-filled, and I can truly say I have not experienced anything more wonderful than motherhood. But there are days that we feel so overwhelmed, we begin to feel like we don’t know who we are anymore. We were once avid readers, nature lovers, writers, students. Everything that we wanted to do that day was a decision solely based around ourselves.

Then motherhood came along it seems, erased our personalities, and we went from being Hafsa to JUST Umm Adam. And before this gets taken in the wrong context, I am not saying anything negative about having a kunya, I love and embrace my own, Alhamdulillah.

But imagine you were to graduate as a Doctor, or an Engineer, or a pharmacist. All of these professions give the individual a new found title. This person who used to be a university student, is now maybe a father, a writer, an Arabic student AND a doctor. It has enhanced the individual, not taken anything away.

As mother’s, since our profession is at home, it’s much harder to draw that balance. Our work is ongoing, our commitment is lifelong and our work hours are not scheduled.

Fast forward a few years, and those of us who make the decision to homeschool, meaning our children are with us for the most part of the day…..it’s easy to wipe away everything else we were and just become Umm Homeschool.

Umm Homeschool…..you may have heard of her, or you may even BE her. Read More



DITL when Mum is tired -13/03/2018

Asalamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu ladies

Today I thought I’d share a day in the life of our homeschool when I wasn’t quite up for it.  I’ve had a cold all week and not much energy, and even today was quite slow.  But I think it’s important to share experiences when things don’t go to plan.  Days like this just take some tweaking that’s all, an art I’m still mastering.  No elaborate projects, field trips or anything majorly exciting happened, just a slow paced day which I could manage. 
So here’s a snapshot of how our Happy Muslim Homeschool looked like yesterday.  Read More


Lesson plan: Our Ramadan guest house

Asalamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu ladies, 

Ramadan is just days away from us and I wanted my kiddos to be excited!  Our beautiful guest only comes once a year, so it’s important we prepare for its arrival. The Salaf us Salih used to prepare way in advance and we are guilty of not having the same yearning. So I wanted to get us going, but not the usual couple of weeks before Ramadan which tends to be more the physical preparation. I want our minds, hearts and physical limbs to start preparing for this beautiful month right now.
This activity is aimed at younger children, but even my older kids like to join in. The main objective of feeling excited, and waiting in anticipation for Ramadan is felt by everybody though because our ‘house’ provides a great discussion point that everyone can get involved in.

So, let me introduce our Ramadan guest house where Ramadan will be staying. He has been gone a whole year, so now the grass has overgrown, the dust has settled all over the windows, and there is no furniture inside -what can we do??  Read More