It’s back to school time – are you excited or anxious?
Cii Radio| Ayesha Ismail| 09 January 2018| 21 Rabi ul Aakhir 1439
Schools are about to open and you’re probably feeling excited and maybe a little sad that holidays are just about over.
Back to School comes with a barrage of projects, homework, sports practice and of course a day filled with pickups and drop offs.
“The roots of education may be bitter, but the fruit is sweet.”
Back to school time also means adjustments for children and families; the first day of grade one, new schools, new classrooms, new teachers and for adults sometimes new jobs.
Change is sometimes exciting and sometimes frightening, but this can also be an opportunity to set new goals. It’s is a new year, and each year goes so fast like a quick turn of a page. This is why planning and setting goals are so important. As Muslims, all our plans should be aimed at achieving our final goal which is to please our Creator Allah Most High.
Here are a few points to keep in mind when planning for this year:
Niyyah: Our intention before doing anything is very important. The Messenger of Allah(peace be upon Him) has said: “Every deed is judged by its intention.”(Hadith-Bukhari) Plan and do lots…but it must be ONLY to please our Allah.
Dua: Every one of us needs to ask and pray to Allah Most High daily for all our needs. A very beautiful dua that The Beloved Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon Him) made whenever he left his home: “In the name of Allah,I trust in Allah, oh Allah I seek refuge in You from straying or being led astray or against slipping or being caused to slip or doing injustice or injustice being done on me or doing wrong or having wrong done to me.” (Hadith-Abu Dawud)
Make mashwara (mutual consultation): To consult with family is important as it unites the heart on a common purpose. All activities whether big or small should be discussed. Sit with the family daily at a mutually convenient time and plan activities and discuss day to day affairs. To make Mashwera is a sunnah and will bring great barakah (blessings) in our home.
Make attainable goals: Sets goals realistically and intelligently. Set goals that are attainable. Most important make deen the priority in our lives. Monitor your progress and place reminders and back your resolutions with planning.
Family time: Set aside quality time for them. Be interactive. Listen to them and pay attention to them when they call on you. Engage them in Taleem (Educational programs), for the smaller ones also read Islamic stories and even make it a practice to discuss the day’s events with them.
Homework: Turn off the T.V, BBM, Facebook and other social networks…put away your concerns and concentrate on being a parent. Look through your child’s homework diary as your child’s teacher uses this as the main connection between you and the school.Remember, don’t do homework for them, do it with them!
Daily routine: Let your child be involved in the small things like packing lunch, laying out clothes (uniforms) etc. this teaches them responsibility. Start bedtime routines a week before school starts. Ensure punctuality in Salaah (prayers). Read your duas together in the morning and evening. Make going to and from school educational by reciting duas collectively in the car. In a short time, they will memorize the duas of travelling.
Educational goals: Plan big! Enrol your kids for the best available Islamic Education… enrol your kids for Hifdh (memorisation of the Qur’an). Make time to attend some Islamic classes, ladies can join the weekly taleem (educational) programs in their area.
Identify your career goals: Choose your curriculum carefully and wisely. Maybe you always talked about making the career switch to a more Halaal source of income or adjusting your work times for salaat with jamaat (congregation). You may need to adjust your times so as to spend some quality time with your family. Whatever your reasons maybe, identify a career that will benefit your family both in this world and the aakhirah (hereafter).
Wake up every day with a purpose: We wake up often knowing we should be doing something important today, but have failed to plan! Prepare for our higher purpose otherwise our day will become less productive.
Uniforms and Stationery: Make sure uniforms are purchased timeously and that it conforms to Sharia (Islamic requirements). If your kids encounter any resistance from the educational institution regarding their Islamic attire or other Islamic practices then be diplomatic and discuss and resolve the matter with management respectfully. Also, ensure that you obtained a list of stationery required early so that it could be budgeted for and purchased well beforehand.
Lunch boxes, breakfasts and diets: Research shows that breakfast eaters have better concentration and muscle co-ordination. Kids need healthy lunch box snacks that maintain blood glucose levels which help concentration, so keep away from fizzy drinks, chips and chocolates for lunch. (Hey Mom – A good idea is to plan a lunch box menu for the week)
Take account of yourself daily: We need to be alert of our development so that we progress. Therefore we need to daily reflect on our progress or a lack of it. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) has said” the feet of the son of Adam will not move on the Day of Judgement until he is asked about five things: how he spent his life, how he spent his youth, from where he acquired his wealth and how he spent it, and what he did with his knowledge.” So we need to be conscious of how we profitably use every second of our lives.
Remember that a Muslim sets goals that are in harmony with our accountability in the Aakhirah (Hereafter)… so take pen to paper and plan for a better life, seeking Allah Most High’s Guidance, Help and Forgiveness. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) has encouraged us to make the following du’a “Oh our Lord, give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter, and save us from the torment of the fire.”
As a student, our focus should always be on the process: What are my daily habits and routines? Are my prayers in order? Am I going to class, studying and meeting with other students?
These are the actions meant by ‘tie your camel’ – and once we do so, Insha’ Allah, Allah Ta’ala will bless our efforts and put barakah in them allowing us to achieve even more than we could have envisioned for ourselves.
Source – E Islam| Muslim Village