Teaching Kids About Eid ul Adha

The following post comes to us all the way from Doha, Qatar where our friend and partner in creating the Sweet Dawah™  Kit line of products at her company, Silver Envelope, Raana Smith lives. Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

As we move in to the last 10 days leading up to Eid al-Adha, we notice a flurry of things going on, as is typical this time of year:

One common theme to the emails hitting our inbox: that ‘please forgive me’ letter from people trying to clear their slates before heading off to Hajj (not that there’s anything wrong with it, I wrote one myself a few years back).

Families are getting their numbers together for the udhiyya (sacrifical animal), or how many sheep they need to slaughter for this year’s sacrifice.

Whatsapp messages are hitting people’s phone with the exact start date of Dhul Hijja (the Islamic month in which the Hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca occurs).

We turn down invitations for lunch because we’re fasting.

Here in Qatar‘labbayk Allahumma labbayk’ plays on the radio.

Things are buzzing. That spiritually charged time of year is upon us.

People are starting on a journey that most only make once in a lifetime.

It’s officially Hajj season.

I wanted to share the season with my 3 and a half  year old son, Ayoub, but more importantly, wanted to help develop an understanding and love in his heart for it. While we cannot overlook the amazing rites and rituals performed during this holy journey, I decided to focus more on the story behind Hajj and its celebration. So, I plan to share Eid Al-Adha with Ayoub in 4 ways:

1. Story and activity to understand one of the reasons behind why we perform Hajj and celebrate Eid Al-Adha.

2. Baking and charity to show giving.

3. Party to celebrate!

4. Craft to remind him of the story of Ibrahim.

Over the past few days at our breakfast table, I’ve shared with Ayoub the story of Ibrahim and how Allah came to him in a dream and asked him to sacrifice his son, Ismail. When Ibrahim spoke to Ismail of his dream he agreed that his father should obey Allah’s command. And as Ibrahim was about to take his son’s life, Allah substituted a ram in Ismail’s place. To help Ayoub get a visual picture, we re-enact the scene with his Khaleeji dolls and a sheep!

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

This story is a great way to start a conversation about Aqeedah: belief in Allah, obedience to Allah, and Allah’s infinite power. Belief in Allah is a tough one because it’s so abstract. For now, I want to help Ayoub understand that all of his favorite things like flowers, water, apple juice, his father, and newborn babies are Allah’s creation. No one can make those things exist except Him. And because we know that Allah is the creator of all things, including us, we love Him and listen to what He says, like Ibrahim. But the one question Ayoub always asks after the story is “where did the Ram come from?” I tell him that Allah is the Creator of all things and He can make anything happen. Allah wanted to put the ram in Ismail’s place and He did. I love the way Mehded Maryam Sinclair, author and storyteller of Miraculous Happenings in the year of the Elephant, expresses the greatness and power of our Creator: “He wanted people to know for sure that those who rely on Him are victorious. Perhaps He wanted everyone to see that if He says “Be!” it surely is.” Alhamdulillah, I feel that we’ve made a great start to helping him understand that the Hajj and celebration are more than just a party, but about commemorating an act of obedience.

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Ayoub and I prepare for our sheep-themed Eid party using products from SilverEnvelope.com, in honor of the animal that was sacrificed instead of Ismail. We invite our friends over to celebrate with us. To get ready, we bake these yummy and healthy cookies that contain no animal or dairy products! We also make these chocolate covered halal marshmallows.

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

 

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

I prep our sheep craft activity to make with our friends and Ayoub helps string the banner and set the table. We wrap gifts for our loved ones and giggle with the excitement of another Eid party! And at the party, we re-tell the story of Ibrahim and make a fun sheep to remind us what this season is about.

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

 

 

All Photos Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

 Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

Photo Courtesy of Silver Envelope

All in all, InshaAllah, I feel that I’ve helped my little guy understand that Eid Al-Adha is more than just a celebration. It’s about commemorating an amazing event that occurred a very long time ago whose lesson is still as relevant today as it was then: obedience to Allah requires sacrifice and garners reward.

 

GIVEAWAY TIME

Silver Envelope is giving away one MubAArak Sheep Eid-in-a-Box Kits: . Must ship to a US address. Valued at $64.95.
 
To enter, answer the question in the comments section below, at this post only: 
 
How do you introduce and teach your kids about Eid ul Adha and the Hajj?
 
Only relevant comments will be considered. Winner randomly selected.

Please read official My Halal Kitchen Guidelines to enter, as entering indicates you have read, agree and understand the terms.

Contest ends today, October 10 at 10:00 PM CST. Winner will be announced ON THIS PAGE and should send an email to contact@myhalalkitchen.com with their full name, mailing address (no-P.O. Box), and phone number by 12:00 AM CST on 10/11/13.

 UPDATE: And the Winner Is… Sazia Riaz

Raana Smith is the Creative Director and Founder of SilverEnvelope.com, Islamic Party and Stationery. A mom with a passion for creative design, she has been developing Islamic products since she was 8 when she wrote “Eid Mubarak” on a plain ribbon purchased at K-Mart. Since welcoming her son, Raana has taken SilverEnvelope in a new direction by adding fun kid’s products for Ramadan and the 2 Eid holidays. She lives in Doha, Qatar.

7 comments

  1. How do you introduce and teach your kids about Eid ul Adha and the Hajj?

    That is a great question! Alhamdulillah we are blessed they attend an Islamic school. They have a mock hajj assembly, including boys wearing an ihram garments and girls wear prayer clothes. For the past few years we have made Eid al Adha treats such as lamb pops (oreos dipped in white chocolate with white nonpareils with a little face). This year we plan on making sheep cupcakes. We talk about udhiya and discuss the story of Ibrahim. Since my kids will have almost a week off school for break we will also use that time to donate items they no longer need. We of course attend the eid prayers as well.

  2. How do you introduce and teach your kids about Eid ul Adha and the Hajj?

    Asalaamu alaikum,
    My husband and I tell the story of how the Hajj began. We also show them photos & video of the Kabah. My daughter also attended an Islamic Sunday school last year, where she made “Hajj” with her schoolmates. Masha’Allah, she still remembers everything about it and talks continuously about visiting the real Kabah, insha’Allah. We also do the Qurbani at a local farm here in the states, so the children are part of that, as well.

  3. I usually look for Hajj packets online for kids and then I complete them with my nephews. Whether they’re coloring or matching pictures, everything in the packet teaches them about Hajj- the hows, the whos, the whys. It’s a fun learning experience for them!

  4. How do you introduce and teach your kids about Eid ul Adha and the Hajj?

    As Salamualaikum

    Insha Allaha I shall teach my kids about Eid ul Adha and Hajj ,by telling them the story of Ibrahim (A.S) and Ismail(A.S) and how Ibrahim(A.S) was ready to sacrifice Ismail(A.S) by obeying Allaha’s(SWT) command.Want to teach them about the 5 pillars of ISLAM, HAJJ the pilgrimage to Makkah, is the fifth pillar and the most significant manifestation of Islamic faith and unity in the world.Want to tell them the the importance of Dhul hajj and how Muslims from all over the world travel to makkah,as they want to remember what Ibrahim and Ismail(A.S) did.Insha Allaha want to show them the pictures of Kaba, safa marwa, zam zam water cans.Insha Allaha one day would love to take them for Umrah and Hajj Ameen.Insha Allaha shall discuss with them about the qurbani and its importance.

    Jazakallaha!!

  5. Salaam

    We tell them the stories related to hajj an then we perform a hajj simulation in our community.
    It is a beautiful experience and the hands on experience teaches them the steps perfectly.

  6. This is wonderful information, which is also helpful for Interfaith ministers & non-Muslims wishing to help educate others about Islamic holy days. Thank you so much for posting this article, I will be sure to post a link in several places on Facebook!
    Blessings multiplied,
    Rev. Cynthia

  7. As As Sallamu Alaikum wa rahmatu Allah wa barakatuh
    I would like to know where you purchased the Khaleeji Doll set? I’ve hopelessly scored the internet to find them and they aren’t available. JazakaAllahu Khairn.
    MaSalaama
    Zayna