We all look forward to Ramadan and that spiritual feeling of drawing closer to Allah. However, when we have children, life is not always the idyll that we imagined it would be. Sometimes, it is useful to reward our children for their good behaviour, such as helping with the housework or simply not being demanding at the end of a tiring day fasting. In addition, it is important for them to look forward to the events that shape all Muslims’ lives. One simple way of addressing these points is to make some kind of advent-style calendar that children can open every day during Ramadan to receive a small gift or sweet treat.
The easiest way to do this is to purchase a readymade calendar; there are lots available online, and some major supermarkets are even starting to sell them. If you want to tailor the calendar to your child, here are some ideas:
- A simple and effective idea from Iman at https://www.andthenshesaid.com/diy-ramadan-good-deed-calendar-for-your-little-muslim/ is shown below. The envelopes are simply stuck onto a backing board and numbered. Iman suggests placing mini toys and treats, or suggestions for goods deeds, in the envelopes. We also suggest using colourful paper bags in the same way.
- If you want to give your child larger rewards, or things to do, try using party bags clipped to a board in the same way as the envelopes above. Paper party bags are ideal as they should have enough structure to stand up, rather than plastic bags. Some ideas for prizes are mini notebooks and pens; toy cars; cards for playing snap; mini games such as marbles or draughts, and small containers of slime. Have a look at the party favours available in most major supermarkets.
- Use five egg boxes to make a calendar containing a Kinder Egg (other brands are available) calendar. Cut coloured paper into circles, write the numbers 1 to 30 on them, and stick them at random to make small flaps to hide the eggs.
- Hang a string on the wall or a blackboard and use pegs to clip on small numbered bags with treats inside – no sticking or gluing required.
- Use a shoe organiser – stick numbers on the front and fill the pockets with various items, which could even include your child’s own toys, as if they haven’t seen them for a long time, they should get more enjoyment out of playing with them.
- If you have 30 containers, whether boxes, jars or plant pots, simply stick a number on them and pop in a treat for every day during Ramadan.
We hope you like these suggestions, and we would love to see photographs of your own creations. Email them in to My Salat Mat at firstname.lastname@example.org