Exciting children for Eid can be daunting at times…honestly! There’s a sea of ideas out all over the internet. Every year, I plan on making a huge Eid Party and always get started with making treat bags and by the time I am done, it’s almost Eid. This year I decided to take things a little easier and slower by making my Eid party beforehand! Eid is great and all, I agree but I feel like we get caught up with the ‘party’ part and not really focus on teaching the kids anything. I love entertaining kids and making them super excited, but I also love teaching them things in a fun way. Eid Ul Adha is a great time to teach kids so much about Islam! I have done worksheets in the past and with Hajj being so complicated, it tends to become confusing and boring for kids. So my plan this year is to create a ‘Hajj Party’ in the beginning of the month of Thul-Hijja. My inspiration for all this really comes out of a desperate need in our communities. I attempt to excite children about Islamic events and holidays so that they have a sense of belonging and pride. I try not to throw large birthday parties for my children merely because it seems silly to spend money and time on something that doesn’t teach them much more than entitlement, yet still want them to feel this sense of excitement once a year! The goal of this party is to review:
- Islamic Months- children will walk into party and have to count which month number Thul-Hijja comes.
- 5 Pillars of Islam- Review the 5 pillars and realize that Hajj is one of them
- Hajj Steps- The point here is to understand that Hajj is a series of steps with obligations, the point is NOT to memorize ever little step.
- Story of Ibrahim (AS)- brief explination of Safa and Marwa
The party will be set up as an obstacle course geared towards kids 4-7 year olds. I plan on starting it indoors and moving it outside as we get into the cousre. I’m so excited, it should be a fun kids party with a few takeaways.
Here’s the general schedule…
1. Begin pilgrimage as child enters location (my house in this case). Children are greeted with Salam, then told to sit on the carpet as we begin our journey.
2. We start with a small circle time and discuss which number month Thul-Hijja is by singing our ‘Months in Islam’ song, this is also the time we review our 5 pillars!
3. The obstacle course will begin with kids coming in by train, plane, boat, foot, camel, etc. (I plan on making small cards with different types of transportation written/drawn on them) and then each child is given Ihram clothing (plastic/fabric table covers), parents will assist in getting children dressed.
4. Start our first step by doing Tawaf around a DIY Kaaba (table decorated with black fabric and gold streamer).
5. Running 7 times between Safa and Marwa (represented by crumbled pieces of craft paper outdoors). I am fortunate enough to have Zamzam water and will probably serve the kids some Zamzam water.
6. Departure to Mina, a tented area where children can sit (here, I plan on using some play tents and tee-pees outdoors)
7. Climbing the Mountain of Arafat and learn to say the Talbiya (outdoor playground rock climbing area)
8. Stoning of the Shaytan (rocks are a little dangerous here, so I am planning on using pop pops snappers).
9. Animal sacrifice- this can get a little gruesome, so I decided to do a lamb shaped pinata! The thought here is to have children collect the stuffing of the pinata and share (as we share the meat of the lamb). They will be asked to keep some, give some to family, and give some to friends.
10. Finally return to kaaba for farewell tawaf (around our DIY Kaaba)
I will update my page as we plan and continue to prepare for our party! Stay tuned!