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11 Tips for Teaching Children Ramadan Fasting

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Rasulullah shallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said,”

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إِذَا مَاتَ الْإِنْسَانُ انْقَطَعَ عَنْهُ عَمَلُهُ إِلَّا مِنْ ثَلَاثَةٍ إِلَّا مِنْ صَدَقَةٍ جَارِيَةٍ أَوْ عِلْمٍ يُنْتَفَعُ بِهِ أَوْ وَلَدٍ صَالِحٍ يَدْعُو لَهُ

When a person died, all of his entire charities will disconnected unless three things; charities, useful knowledge and shaleh children who pray for their parents.” (HR. Muslim:1631)

In Islam, children are deposit from Allah SWT that we should take care very carefully.  Each parent must have willingness to do and give the best for their children so that in the future their children can have better future, be smart and good leader also useful for the country in doing their obligation suitable with the function of religion.

Below are some tips for parents to teach children fasting:

  1. Teach children about the pillar of Islam and its implementation

Abu Abdirrahman bin Umar bin Khatthab radhiyallahu ‘anhuma mentioned that Rasulullah SAW said,”

بُنِيَ الْإِسْلَامُ عَلَى خَمْسٍ: شَهَادَةِ أَنْ لَا إِلهَ إِلَّا الله،ُ وَأَنَّ مُحَمَّداً رَسُوْلُ االلهِ، وَإِقَامِ الصَّلَاةِ، وَإِيْتَاءِ الزَّكَاةِ، وَحَجِّ الْبَيْتِ، وَصَوْمِ رَمَضَانَ (رواه البخاري ومسلم)

Islam is built for 5 matters, which are: shahadah means that there is none God except Allah SWT that need to obeisance and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah Ta’ala, founding prayers, pay zakat, fasting Ramadhan and go Hajj to Baituallah Haram.”

Fasting is one of the 5 pillars of Islam in Islam. Before parents are teaching children to have fasting, they need to embed Islam in their children so they can understand, live and also implement it in their daily activities. Here, children are expected can be devotion to their parents and be good children in the future. Read more about Virtues of Surah Al-Fatihah

When parents do not understand about religion and do not pay attention to their religion, children will deviate from the religion norm of life both spiritual and mentally.

2. Share stories about the virtues of fasting

In Ramadhan, each Muslim is expected to have fasting at noon in the term to restrain and stop something which is forbidden. Religiously, there are 3 things which caused of fasting are being cancelled; eating, drinking and having intercourse. Time do to fasting is start from Fajr (Subh) until the sun is set. Simplest words is since Subh until Magrib accompanied by intention.

Based on Al-Qur’an in Al-Baqarah 183 about the mandatory of fasting:

يَاأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

Dear devout people, it is required to you to have fasting as it is a mandatory from all those people before you so you will have godly.

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3. Share stories about the prohibitions of fasting

The primary prohibition for fasting are eating, drinking and having intercourse from Fajr until Magrib. During fasting, all human is free which means none is known whether we are fasting or not except Allah SWT.

Here, we are trained to be honest to ourselves in doing our worship to get the virtues of being Godly to Allah SWT. It is because our Godly is one of the 5 pillars of Faith in Islam. Read more about Importance of Treating Guest in Islam

4. Parents are giving good tawheed

Abu Hurairah radhiyallahu ‘anhu mentioned that Rasulullah shallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said,”

مَا مِنْ مَوُلُودٍ إِلاَّ يُوْلَدُ عَلىَ الْفِطْرَةِ، فَأَبَوَاهُ يُهَوِّدَانِهِ أَوْ يُنَصِّرَانِهِ أَوْ يُمَجِّسَانِهِ، كَمَا تُنْتِجُ الْبَهِيْمَةُ بَهِيْمَةً جَمْعَاءَ هَلْ تُحِسُّونَ فِيْهَا مِنْ جَدْعَاءَ

“Each child was being born in saintly condition. Thus, their parents will responsible whether to make them become Christian or Majusi. Like an animal which born its perfect child, do you see its stump (at ears)?”  

As parents, we are realizing to educate our children by giving full of attention, guidance, supporting and controlling also being good example to their children in doing worship based on Islam.

5. Shares stories about the dangers of leaving fasting

It is narrated from Abu Hurairah RA that indeed, Rasulullah SAW was told something about the coming of Ramadhan: Indeed, it has came a month full of blessed to you whereas you are required to do fasting. In this month, all Jannah door will be open while Hades will be closed and all the devils will be handcuffed.

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There is also a night which the value is the same as 1000 months, thus those are forbidden to do good deeds (not having charities at the month), and he shall be forbidden (not to get blessed at the other month likewise this month). (HR. Ahmad, Nasai and Baihaqy. Hadits Shahih Ligwahairihi) Read more about Importance of Humble in Islam

There is no need to argue anymore in relation to the miracle of Al-Qur’an in the world. Benefit of reading Al-Qur’an every day will increase our knowledge. In addition, the function of Al-Qur’an will also increase our godly to Allah SWT especially in educating our children. Advising our children by informing some hadidhs or the benefit of reading Al-Qur’an in our children live will be easier to understand and adsorb by them so they will understand the important reason not to leave fasting Ramadhan.

6. Do not force

Rasulullah SAW taught fasting to children since early stage so they will follow our behavior to resist their lust. When children are complaining hungry, we can distract their attention by asking them to play or find another amusement. This way is believed can make children forget about their hungry so they can continue their fasting until the breakfasting time come. Read more about  Virtues of Traveling in Islam

“Since the announcement, we do fasting and teach our children to do the same thing too.  We engage them to go to the mosque and give them wool toys. When they are crying because of their hunger, we persuade them by other amusement until the breakfasting time come.” (HR. Bukhari and Muslim)

Still, parents should teach their children based on their competence age. Parents are recommended not to force their children to have fasting full day when their condition is not supporting because their ages do not have obligation to do fasting yet. Read more about Law of Fasting Before 1st Ramadhan

7. Trained since early aged

It is advisable to train children at age 5 to have fasting in half day then continue slowly to a full day fasting in a month. Still, we need to consider the condition of the children before we asked them to do fasting both a half day and full day fasting.  We can train them at the age 5 to 10 so that children will have habitual to do worship. The special of fasting Ramadhan to children will make them godlier to Allah SWT.

8. Be firm to children

In familiarization worship to children, parents should have firm action without forcing children to implement it. It is important to have a good discipline attitude from parents in order to build up the habitual of doing worship to children. By giving motivation and supporting to children in doing worship regularly, it will make them realizing inside their heart to increase their godly to Allah SWT. Read more about Virtues of Memorizing Surah Baqarah

Parents can give example in doing mandatory fasting in a full month during Ramadhan, and children will copy them to do fasting in a full month during Ramadhan too.

Parents can teach them to wake up when shaum time during Ramadhan and stop eating when Imsak come. Then it continues to do Subh prayer in a pilgrim. This action will be copied by children when they are adult and it will be repeated again to children’s family in generation. The virtues of pilgrim prayers also can make the hospitality among family more intimate and closer.

9. Teach children to respect others who do fasting

Rubayyi’ binti Mu’awwidz mentioned,” Rasulullah SAW delegates to announce at the earlier morning asyura’ at Anshar clan which is located in Madinah:

من كان أصبح صائما فليتمّ صومه ومن كان أصبح مفطرا فليتمّ بقية يومه

“Those who do fasting this morning, he shall completing his fasting. Those who are not fasting, he shall needs to keep his (eating and drinking) until night.”

10. Teach children to respect others who is doing fasting

When children are not able to perform fasting, they still need to be taught about ways to respect others who are doing it. Such as do not eating and drinking in front of people who are doing fasting and reminded them to hold their hunger until the break fasting time come. Read more about Sunnah When Hearing Adzan

In addition, we are advisable to teach children to have respect those who are not doing fasting as well as we are teach children to respect others who are doing fasting. We need to embed inside their heart not mocking to those who are doing fasting because of the difference religion so they will find the beautiful of the benefit inter religious tolerance.

11. Give rewards or gifts  

As a starter, parents can give rewards to children when they can complete their fasting in a full day or a full month. This action is believed can support children to do fasting in a full day or full month. Still, this action should be stopped soon as children are getting bigger and get used to do fasting in a full day or full month. Read more about Virtues of Surah Kahf on Friday

Children need to embed that fasting is one of mandatory worship from Allah SWT and the rewards that are giving to them are to support their fasting only so they will learn and responsible in being honest to their selves.

By embedding tawheed to children in teaching and habituation to do fasting in Ramadhan, it is believed can easily be absorbed to children and be their guidance as habitual activity during Ramadhan.

Hope we are giving soleh children that can support and increase our Godly to Allah SWT. Amiin.

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