It’s my eldest sons first Ramadan, fasting full time this year and I have really gone out of my way to make this experience as easy and memorable as possible. I don’t normally plan too much before Ramadan, too be honest where’s the time! With a family and home to run plus working, planning is the key. Alhamdullilah I started early, thinking about the difficulties my son may face and how I could make this Ramadan extra special, so parents…if I can do it – ANYONE CAN!!!
As a parent you can’t help worry about fasting in the long summer days for your children and how it will affect their health and well-being. One thing that we should all be certain of, is that Allah SWT knows and loves your child and He would never give any person a burden that they could not bear. Even though you may feel that your child is still too young, Allah SWT knows your child better!
Here are some of the things that I have done that has got my son sooo excited for Ramadam Masha Allah!
1 Starting early
One of the things that I did with my children from the age of 6 upwards, was I started off with mini fasts on the weekend building up over the years to full days of fasting. This really helps your child understand and know what to expect when fasting. The key message is that fasting is only for Allah.
Research Ramadan and key facts and get yourself prepared. Explain why Muslims fast to your child and the beautiful stories of Ramadan (age appropriately).
Try to pray together and get them to lead if they can. This will make them feel really special and gives them a strong understanding of the importance of everyday prayer. Take your children to the mosques for prayers if you can, especially at weekends for Tarweeh as it builds a sense of community and togetherness.
Start talking about routines in Ramadan, how their day could be after school, perhaps have a nap and rest so it’s not such a long day for them. Plan weekend activities and iftaar gatherings that their friends and similar aged children can be a part of.
Plan and prepare menus for the week and talk about all the wonderful treats they would like to eat for iftar and suhoor and get the kids involved!
6 Ramadan decorations!
Get them in the mood for the festive season and decorate your home with your kids. This will create excitement and keep them busy even while fasting. Art crafts are a great idea.
7 The month of the Qur’an
Read the Qur’an regularly together and give yourselves a target to reach for Ramadan. Explore the verses and stories together, especially about Ramadan. This will bring the words of Allah, closer to their hearts.
8 Charity and good deeds
Create a good deed box/calendar for the 30 days of Ramadan which you add to everyday. This gives your child a real understanding of giving and kindness. You could even continue this after Ramadan.
Explain how Allah rewards us much more in Ramadan and agree a reward for your child for every day that they fast so that they have something special to look forward. Maybe a special surprise treat for them at the end of the month?
10 Eid Celebrations
Not forgetting the great celebration of Eid, get your kids involved with all the preparations plus the etiquettes of Eid and fun activities. Most importantly, don’t forget the presents, this are so important for your children, wrap them beautifully so they are dazzled!
May Allah SWT bless our children with patience and perseverance this Ramadan and grant them strong Iman and knowledge that can lead them through this life and the hereafter successfully – Ameen!