Author: Mehreen Tariq
Illustrator: Asbah Alaena
Publisher: Zaytoon Bookshelf
Come along and join Binyamin and his quirky crab, Chester as they bring to you Dhul-Hijjah stories that span across different continents, people, landscapes, and a variety of animals. An engagingly adventurous book that comprises of ten stories, ten poems, and forty subject-based activities, encouraging children to do their very best in the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah. From Blue Dragon to Moose, Pink Pony to Mr. Bear, this super interactive book is packed with different activities that include mazes, ‘How to draw’ sections, Crafts, Islamic aspects, and Educational components. Animal-loving kids are sure to enjoy these pages loaded with fun learning, inspiring them to love and live Islam.
Why I like it:
When I consider buying a book for my kids, I read tons of reviews and need to know exactly what’s in it before I purchase it. Plus I’m very picky and have this very strict criteria. So this was one of the RARE occasions when I looked at a book, completely fell in love with the cover and spontaneously ordered it within 5 minutes! I actually found out two days after I had ordered it that the author is actually @taleswithmimi – a Book Reviewer that I follow! And I was even more eager to see how this book would turn out!
Needless to say the illustrations by Asbah Alaena in this book are wonderful!!
It’s a workbook divided over 10 days which makes it perfect for a Hajj Unit. (If you’re familiar with the “Allah Loves Me” workbook by Peter Gould, this book is similar to that with QUALITY activities but focused mainly on Dhul Hijjah and things to do leading up to the actual Hajj/Eid.)
What I especially love about it is that children will easily relate to it. It talks about pink ponies and dragons, and still imparts Islamic Knowledge without it being “preachy” or “a list of facts”. It’s a “FUN” book where kids won’t even realize the tremendous amount of things they are actually learning.
The first few days are general good deeds – For example Day 1 has a story about finding the new moon and followed by the dua for seeing the moon, and more importantly a breakdown of the dua for understanding/memorizing. Then it has an activity for writing an acrostic poem, and ends with a step by step drawing a rocket. Day 2 is all about helping others and trying to do your best. Each day has a story followed by multiple activities. It has a scavenger hunt, fill in the blanks, coloring and designing, crosswords, spot the difference, mazes, dua lists and actual cut out crafts to complete.
As I mentioned its really diverse – diverse characters, diverse landscapes, diverse activities, you get the point. Its awesome! With LOTS of talking points. It has geography activities too, where your child will have to figure out that one of the characters is from Egypt. It includes a science activity where your child will learn how to make their own rainbow. AND I learnt that there is such a thing as the blue dragon! (aka Blue Iguana). Also, there’s a glossary at the back for words you may not know.
Now coming to the actual Hajj part – it includes all the steps of Hajj. It also includes fasting on Yaum-e-Arafah, steps of Tawah and why we do Saiy, the story of zamzam, why we throw stones at jamarat, etc. The thing to note is that the book is comprehensive without being preachy.
Well its an activity book so its already filled with activities.
It touches on so many bits of information that parents can build activities on. For example, it mentions food in the quran, a recipe for smash burgers and information about the traditional dish from Indonesia. So as a parent you can have your kids “research” the Quran to find where the food is mentioned, and ask them to find more foods. Then make the smash burger and have them write their “own” recipe, even if its as simple as ‘how to make a Peanut butter jelly sandwich’. Also you could have your child look up other traditional dishes around the world and talk about the similarities/differences between them.
It’s a very comprehensive book FILLED with stories and DIFFERENT activities to keep your children engaged! I HIGHLY recommend it to everyone with young children. Children as young as 4 will enjoy the stories, and the older ones will enjoy doing the activities!
Ps. I hope the authors also offer these activities as printables! The Book is sooooo pretty I don’t want my kids writing in it! I would rather download printables of these activities and have them work on those!!