The Islamic Foundation
of North America
www.ifna.net

Weekend School Mastery Level 2

Group Identity:  Ages 8 and up including anyone who received below an 80 on the entrance test.  (No one over 12 years old in this class.)


Clothing Requirement: Boys will wear a kufi or topi and girls will wear a hijab.  The color of the kufis and hijabs will be the same for this level.  Dark Navy Blue is recommended.


Mastery Focus: Basic skills mastery: Physical skills mastery, an introduction to the 7 beliefs and 5 pillars with an emphasis of foundational and practical knowledge.


Methodology:  This level will consist of 5 segments of approximately 30-40 minutes each.  Each segment will concern the following:

bulletSegment 1:  Islamic beliefs:  The parameters of the Eman ul Muffasil will be taught in an introductory fashion with an emphasis on the student knowing how to explain each of the seven beliefs in a slightly detailed fashion. Common Qur'anic Arabic phrases and some basic grammar principles will be introduced.  More practice and more rules of Qirah leading towards basic proficiency in Tajweed. The following surahs will be memorized with meaning: All surahs from Level 1 along with surahs 100-107.

bulletSegment 2:  Islamic etiquette:  Manners for eating, sleeping, the bathroom, meeting, greeting, personal hygiene, farewell, behavior towards parents, the elderly, younger people, strangers, etc...

bulletSegment 3:  Islamic practices:  The main emphasis will be on mastering all the significant details of taharah, wudu, and all the forms of Salah and their importance.  Use the book on Salah for Children by Ghulam Sarwar. 
    (All the significant details included in the book by Yusuf Islahi "Everyday Fiqh" concerning Wudu and Salah.  Another book you can substitute is "The Prescribed Prayer Made Simple" by T. Shuaib).  This class is a Wudu and Salah intensive.  Everything from Adhan, Iqamah and the attendant du'as as well as witr,  Tahajjud and Najasha,  Ghusl and Tayammum will be covered.

bulletSegment 4:  Islamic Themes:  This class will deal with introducing the different Prophets and their stories, the life of the Blessed Prophet Muhammad and stories of some famous Sahaba.

bulletSegment 5:  Physical fitness/martial arts:  Students will be given a regular period of physical fitness training and/or martial arts.  Muslims are weak and oppressed all over the world and all the non-Muslims train their children in personal self-defense.  Shouldn't we follow the Sunnah as prepare ourselves for our own defense as well?  Karate, Kung Fu, Tai Chi, Judo, etc... should be an essential part of any program for a well-rounded Muslim.  It also imparts greater confidence and discipline. 


Discussion:  Islamic studies, as was highlighted before, is often boring for the students because the same things are taught, year after year, regardless of grade level.  In this educational methodology, knowledge is the divider between levels, not age.  It may take some getting used to, but in the end, there is nothing inherently wrong with taking an 8 year old who doesn't know how to make ghusl and putting him or her in a class with a 15 year old who also doesn't know.  They are both on the same knowledge level.

    Would you hold 10 or 20 other students hostage in a class simply because the teacher has to concentrate on bringing up the less knowledgeable students?  By the time those students came up to speed, either the school year would be almost over or the other students will have tuned themselves out of the class out of boredom, or both!

    There must be a Mastery Level Class devoted strictly to certain aspects of Islam which a student must achieve before moving higher in the ranks.   This is the class that will ensure that Salah, Wudu and all the requisites are mastered so that in higher levels, the teacher can concentrate on other aspects of Islam, rather than on Wudu and Salah over and over.


Textbooks:  The books are listed as follows:

bulletSegment 1:  "The Holy Qur'an for Children Juz Amma from IFNA"Islam for Children"  by Ahmad Von Denffer.  + "Easy Steps in Arabic" from MELS
bulletSegment 2:  "Etiquettes of Life" By Yusuf Islahi.  (and/or) "Life of Perfection."  Iqra.  (The teacher will draw the lessons from these books.)
bulletSegment 3:   "The Children's Book of Salah"  by Ghulam Sarwar"  Also use these Teacher Resources:  "The Prescribed Prayer Made Simple."  Tajuddin Shuaib.  Or   "Everyday Fiqh  Vol. 1. " Yusuf Islahi.  (All the knowledge in these books concerning Taharah, Najasa, Wudu, Ghusl and Salah must be taught.)
bulletSegment 4:  The teacher will draw stories for the students from the following books: "Stories of the Prophets" by A. Nadwi and "Stories of the Prophets" by Ibn Kathir.

 

Specific Skills to Teach in Each Segment:  The skills mentioned above will be taught specifically: Basic knowledge of 'Aqeedah, Manners and Adab, Personal hygiene, Everything having to do with Salah and stories of some of the Prophets in a basic level.


The Final Word:  This can be a very successful level because it will give the students the confidence to move on to higher levels of learning without the fear of not knowing the basics.  Graduates of this level must pass a comprehensive exam of all the skills learned here.  Limit class sizes to no more than 20 pupils if at all possible.  They can memorize all the du'as and other phrases related to this level's subject matter so don't be afraid to teach them.

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