Saturday, August 6, 2011

Kids fasting ?

Fasting is not obligatory till a child reaches puberty.........but it is very common that children in Muslim homes start fasting earlier than that as they want to be part of what the rest of the family is doing. They just get into the spirit of Ramadan... Mashallah! After all it is very contagious... :):) Wouldn't you say?

Like this pictue of a father and son on the first day of ramadan making wudu together

Some do it for ajr (rewards) as they have learnt the ayahs and Hadith about it and are excited about fasting, while some may want to fast as heir older siblings are too, on a funny note "I don't want to eat" ones may even fast so that Ummi doesn't run after them to eat all day :):):):):)

Whatever the case it is important to encourage these children to fast as much as they do, for the right reasons and with the proper intention. 


Fasting comes very easy to some while some find it really tough. Every child has his own threshold and that is the wisdom in Allah's command for not making it obligatory till puberty when one enters young adulthood.... Subhanallah!
source fasting children in China

For those kids who fasting easy should not be stopped as it really softens their hearts and purifies their soul. Obviously we are not telling them or expecting them to fast in the first place. It's they who are begging us to let them.......

Either way there are times when kids feel they just can't or find it very hard to go on once they fast. I feel it is more so important to let children make the choice of fasting and encouraging them to do it for short hours when they show an inclination to. That way they can gear themselves for the bigger task step by step.


 Here I would like to share some ideas we have been using in our home over  the past few years. I have found them to be suitable and beneficial for our family and wanted to share the idea.


Whenever my Lil Muallims showed the desire to fast at a young age I told them they could fast for as  long as they wanted to after breakfast. I made  them make  a bar graph for each day showing how many hours they fasted for. Basically the counted the gap between two meals be it 3 hours, 5 hours or more. The up and down levels of the bar graph made a visual for them of what they were doing. seeing that they usually wanted to do more than the last time or sometimes just even skip a day. It was all good Alhumdolillah. As every time they opened their fast for snack time or lunch we made dua to Allah to accept it from them.

Here's what it looks like:

 Trust me it makes all the difference :)


These little bits of fasting make them actually feel how the hungry children around the world must feel...... waiting in lines for hours in a refugee camp?  

Then what about those who didn't even get to a refugee camp.....? 

It's a food for thought that in our homes they had the choice to eat what and when they wanted but not all are so fortunate.... and I make sure I voice that and we praise and thank Allah for all the blessings He has Bestowed upon us. Alhumdolillah and make dua............

Some get it like this and some not at all......


O Allah please ease the pain and hunger of those inflicted with drought, disease and famine. May Allah soften our hearts to do something for those in need to the  best of our capabailities. Ameen



After all that is one of the reasons why fasting has been prescribed  on us like it was on people before us who were given the Book. Helping our children understand it's significance is very critical in making them want to do it by their own free will and interest, and be fully prepared for it before it becomes obligatory for them. Inshallah!

With all this I find them to want to wake up for suhoor too by the next Ramadan if not the same one :) Mashallah!


They have to know that the only and true intention they fast is to please Allah but another thing I found that worked very well with my kids was surprising them with customized badges for them as encouragement whenever they fasted more than a regular gap between snacks saying......6 hour Saim or 7 hour Saim :) Or even Sabir Saim when they did it all the way.

(Saim means fasting person ... One who fasts)

I don't have pictures of my previous badges to share but they were round with a cute image in the middle and their  name and title written around it.  I printed them in grayscale (don't have a colored pronter) with only my writing in color....a lil colored border showed around the badge of the paper I used for the backing. then I covered them front and back with contact sheet and stuck a safety pin with sticky tape behind it. My Lil Muallims were so surprised and pleased to get them that they didn't even mind that they were printed black and white Alhumdolillah !

 This year I made them a bit differently.....

Ofcourse Lil muallimah wanted one too so I made her one doing her Ramadan crafts well Alhumdolillah!

As you can see once I made the cards, I placed them inside these card holders with clips (like Id badges) :) I found at the $ store. 


Another thing that fascinates the Lil ones is that Jannah (Heaven) will have only 8 gates for the ones who make it into the heavens and out of those 8 gates one is specifically for those who perfected their fast, in Ramadan and outside it too. Once all the fasters will enter through it those gates will be shut and no one else will be able to enter through it...........It brings that wonder to their face as it should to ours too.... Will we make it? We can't even imagine the bounties Allah will reward those who enter through it.......

We made this Babur Rayyan opening gate flap in our Ramadan Lapbook which is a constant reminder of this special gate ........ Kids also like coloring one as a coloring page or even drawing their own........

Once both my older Muallims started waking up for suhoor I have started to keep a surprise Islamic gift ready for them on the dining table at the first Suhoor (predawn meal) You can more about it  our last year and this year gifts here and here.


Sharing informational and interesting material made specially for kids is also an effective tool

I really liked this video Sr Umm Kashifa shared on her blog

I also liked the Ramadan issues of Little Explorer Magazine a lot Mashallah!

Other Websites

I found a really beneficial post on Jannah Steps.....Ten baby Steps to Fasting. Mashallah !

 With all the net surfing and blog reading we may do we can never really find all the good stuff out there. Plus there s the time issue. So please help me link up to other related posts on websites and blogs for the benefit of all. 


Fasting goes hand in hand with opening the fast too ? Some homes have certain delicacies that are looked forward to in Ramadan...... It should not be the main focus at all becaus eit will then takee uss away from the purpose... whicch ibadah and submission to Allah, to seek His pleasure.

Nonetheless certain foods still bring out the spirit of Ramadan. For our lil fasters it's like the pot of gold at the end of a rainbow.... with no true significance but exciting to look forward to :) These make up the positive image and fond memories of Ramadan!



May Allah help us and guide us in training our kids in His way in the right way......and accept our efforts from us Ameen

How do you inculcate the Ramadan spirit in your home?

NOTE: All Ramadan images have been taken from the Ramadan archives on

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