When I was a child I was fascinated about women in Islamic history. The stories of these women showed the true strength, knowledge, and capabilities women possess. They were dedicated, hardworking, yet humble at the same time. They maintained their modesty while running successful businesses. They were able to raise kids who contributed immensely to our religion, to math, to science and to many other fields of study. So why is it that when we ask our children who they want to be like, it’s something along the lines of Spiderman or Sofia the First. Don’t get me wrong, kids will always be impressed and love their TV characters, but let’s not let them forget the true heroes and heroines we have in Islamic history.
International Women's Day
On March 8th 2017, there is a day known as International Women’s day. A day in which we show respect, appreciation and love towards all our fellow sisters for contributions they’ve made. It is a day to recognize that we as women have achieved many goals and continue to contribute to society in so many beneficial ways. MyDeen Magazine, a monthly children’s magazine (Ages 5-7 & 8-11) published their March edition, Mothers of the Believers, to remember and educate kids about some of the amazing women in the past.
Islamic Role Models for Kids
It may come as a shock to some, but there were many women who were scholars, military heroes, entrepreneurs and leaders! The more I learned about their incredible stories the more it motivated and inspired me as a Muslimah. I began to look at these women as role models and as individuals who possessed characteristics that I wanted in myself. But it wasn’t their positions or status that awed me, it was their amazing attitudes and unwavering strength that spoke to me. These women could persevere through extreme hardships and overcome hurdle after hurdle in order to stay steadfast in their deen. These are the types of messages and role models we could all use, not just our kids.
As a mother of two, the importance of introducing and educating them about the heroes and heroines within our own Islamic text has increasingly become more apparent. Living in the West kids are bombarded with super heroes from a cartoon standpoint, but these heroes completely fail to address the struggles and difficulties that come along with being a Muslim. They also do not serve as adequate role models for our kids to aspire to be. Alhamdulilah this beautiful religion of Islam has given us both male Prophets as well as many incredible females to use as inspiration. The question is now how do we get them to see these incredible men and specifically women as the true heroes they are?
The Mothers of the Believers
One idea is by bringing Khadijah, Asiya, Maryam and the other inspiring women to life in a fun way for our kids. It’s by telling their stories using the lingo and style that so many of the TV shows use. It’s about using their lives and relating their struggles to the ones we sometimes face, although on a much smaller scale of course. It’s about following in these women’s footsteps and emulating in our actions what they have taught us. It’s by taking advantage of the everyday small opportunities to remind our kids of what our ultimate purpose on this Earth is. We must educate ourselves about the dedication, sacrifice and faith of these women first if we want our children to possess their remarkable characteristics and emulate them. By doing this we are giving them the knowledge as well as tools to use later on in life to overcome the adversaries they will face.
Our children are unfortunately surrounded by TV shows, music, books and a culture that oftentimes perpetuates role models that are not muslim, so there is always going to be a disconnect. It is crucial for us to begin and continue to educate our children about these amazing women in our history. Some of the stories of our women in the past are simply incredible. For example, Asiya – the Pharaoh’s wife – she gave up every luxury she had in this world and endured the ongoing torture of Pharaoh in order to believe in the one true God, Allah (swt). Or the story of Maryam(as), Mother of Jesus (AS) who was one of the most pious and dedicated worshippers in the sight of Allah(swt). We have a lot to be proud of as women and as Muslimahs Alhamdulilah. It is up to us to pass these messages along to our young leaders so that they can become much better believers then us in sha Allah.
Click on the PDF for a FREE PRINTABLE of 4 amazing women in Islam. It is the lesson pages as well as the review word search from the ages 5-7 magazine shipped in March from myDeen.
myDeen mails out 2 fun and educational magazines every month for kids ages 5-7 & 8-11. Please feel free to download, copy and distribute to help educate as many kids or adults as possible.