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IQRA' e-Newsletter
November, 2012 - Issue 11  
In This Issue
IQRA' Book Center
Teacher Training
Nevada
Arizona
California
New Jersey
Educator's Column
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Greetings!
As-Salamu 'alaykum wa Rahmatullah!

THE COMING OF A NEW YEAR - MUHARRAM 1434   

Muslims around the world welcome the dawn of a new year and the blessings that come in Muharram. Muharram is a special month for Muslims particularly because it contains the Day of Ashura, which falls on the 10th of this month. On the Day of Ashura, Muslims fast and pray because the blessed Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) found the Jews of Madinah observing the fast on the day of Ashura. They did so because it marked the event of Musa (pbuh) and his people being saved from the Pharaoh. The Prophet (pbuh) felt that Muslims also had a right to observe this tradition, and so he advised Muslims to fast on this day as well. The rewards of fasting on this day (and the 9th and 11th) and in increasing in good actions and worship are greater than other days, second to the month of Ramadan. In addition, some sixty years after Hijrah. Many Muslims around the world, both Sunni and Shi'ah, remember the suffering that the Prophet's grandson, Sayyidina Husain, and his followers underwent on the plains of Karbala'. This suffering should serve as a symbol for all those who suffer today on account of their political and religious affiliations. In this month we ask Allah to continue to guide us on the path of Islam and to help us implement it in the truest manner. We ask each of you to reach out to your families, friends and neighbors - regardless of their religion or race - and resolve any conflicts you may have with them in a forgiving and upright way. May Allah bless America with peace, justice and harmony, and may He give our newly elected president the wisdom to work constructively and effectively on issues of the economy, education and global justice.

Find the Warmth of Knowledge at the IQRA' Book Center
As the weather cools, cozy up to a new book from IQRA' Book Center! 
 
Our holiest months from Allah (SWT) have passed and now is the most blessed time to begin preparation for those months to come again. This time of preparation, combined with the cooler weather, gives us a perfect opportunity to come inside, and increase our study and reflection on Islam. 
 
Come by IQRA Book Center, located at 2751 W. Devon Ave, Chicago, IL, or visit IQRA's Online Bookstore, or purchase an e-Book.

Take a look, buy a book, and read to increase your blessings from Allah (SWT).  
Teacher Training Workshops Highlight Best Practice
Dr. Tasneema Ghazi and Mr. Habeeb Quadri 
offered a Teachers' Training Seminar at Islamic Foundation North (IFN) Sunday school. The seminar was very well attended. Mr. Habeeb Quadri discussed the strategies of classroom management with the teachers and administrators of the  school.
Dr. Tasneema Ghazi discussed the "Educational and Islamic Resources for Teachers." A lively and interesting discussion followed the presentations. Teachers and administrators of the school
provided positive evaluations regarding the helpful professional development workshop. 
IQRA' Featured in Nevada
On Friday, October 5th, Dr. Ghazi travelled to Las Vegas, on the invitation of Dr. Khalid Khan, Chairman of the Board of Islamic Society of Nevada in Las Vegas. He gave the Friday Khutabah at the Islamic Center. Dr.Ghazi spoke on the "Role of Muslims in Contemporary Pluralistic Society, specifically North America." Dr. Ghazi told the congregation that the modern democratic societies have open doors for all citizens to participate and make their opinions and voices heard. It is up to us to participate, serve and find our space in the American landscape. He urged the Muslims to follow the "middle path" as recommended by Allah (SWT) and practiced by Rasulullah (PBUH).

 

Arizona Highlights IQRA'

On Saturday, October 6th, Dr. Abidullah Ghazi presided the Annual Sir Sayed Day celebrations in Phoenix Arizona. Dr.Ghazi spoke about the relevance of Sir Sayed's work and ideology in our lives today. He said that "we should emulate his sincerity, realism and peaceful resolution to all issues."  

 

 

Digital Initiative Introduced to California
On Sunday, October 7th, Dr.Ghazi participated in Urdu Markaz's Mushairah in Los Angeles, California. The program was organized by Sister Nayyar Jahan. The audience appreciated and enjoyed Dr. Ghazi's poetry. While in Los Angeles, Dr. Ghazi also met some prominent community leaders and introduced IQRA's digital initiative. 
IQRA' Showcased in New Jersey

On October 19th, Dr. Ghazi was invited as the keynote speaker at the Sir Sayed Day celebration at the Aligarh Association, New Jersey.  IQRA' attended this event at the kind invitation of Dr. Masood Haider, President of Aligarh Alumni Association of New  Jersey. The topic of Dr. Ghazi's speech was "Aligarh's contribution in humorous and satirical literature." Dr. Ghazi stated that the mental attitude that the Aligarh movement fostered was positive thinking, self-confidence and futuristic outlook.  This was reflected in their academic life, social environment and literature with its positive messages and humorous upbeat. He also emphasized the need of preserving our language, culture and traditions.

IQRA' Educator's Column:
Lessons in Being Thankful

As the Prophet (Pbuh) advised us, the best way to stay thankful to Allah is to count His Favors in our lives everyday. For Allah says, "And He gives you all that you ask for. But if you count the favors of Allah, never will you be able to number them. Verily, man is given up to injustice and ingratitude." [The Noble Qur'aan [14:34]

As a classroom teacher what discussions have you had with your students about the importance of being thankful?  What lessons have your students been engaged in to count their blessings?  IQRA' would be very interested to hear about these classroom activities.

Here are some ideas teachers can use in their classrooms:

Conduct lessons looking at the different ways that Muslims give thanks to Allah for all that He has given them and how this is practiced in deeds as well as words.

Activities:

1.  Teachers/Parents can read a poem to students to show how much Allah (SWT) has given to them:

Allah created the nights and created the days
and created the sun with its warm rays
and Allah made the moon and every star
and everything we see - near and far.

It is Allah that commands the change.
He moves the clouds and sends the rain.
He sends the sun - warm and bright.
Then removes the sun to make it night.

Allah created the angels that do all this.
So everything is completed without a miss.
When Allah tells them they always obey
and they never stop working - night or day.

Source: musalla.org

2.  Students can discuss the importance of giving thanks and then write about what they are thankful for and how they can give back in good deeds for all that they have received in their lives.

3.  Poetry lesson:  
i. Together with the class, brainstorm words and actions that show appreciation, such as being kind, charity, service, smiling, giving a gift.  
ii.  Students can then work on writing their own poems to show why they are thankful, and how they show thanks and appreciation.  
iii.  Share their poems and put them in a Giving Thanks Poetry Anthology that can then be placed in the classroom library.

Teachers can submit their educational articles to publish@iqra.org IQRA' would like to hear your classroom success stories, especially with the use of their books and curriculum.