December 16, 2008
A List of Questions for Islamic Studies
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
I am really hoping this post will get a lot of comments, not for me, but for kids learning Islamic Studies. I am working on a plan with some Islamic Studies teachers to help revamp the classroom to help their students think of where they stand with Allah swt and how to make themselves better Muslims. But to do that, a student has to make the first step, really look inside themselves, really wonder–in other words, a student has to THINK.
So I am coming up with a list of questions for students in Islamic Studies class to think about, most of them to be asked on the first day of class or throughout the year. Naturally, some questions are age sensitive and thinking doesn’t really kick in until late middle school/high school. But as I looked at the list of questions, some of them are good to ask yourself. And when a teacher is asking a student some of these questions, some of them do not require a verbal/written answer, but a kid should think about them. (In no particular order)
- What do you want to learn about Islam?
- What about Islam interests you?
- How do you want to get closer to Allah swt?
- What does God mean to you?
- What can I (as a teacher) do to help you (get closer to Allah swt or learn)?
- Why Islam?
- Where do you stand in your relationship with God?
- How can you (or learning) help your spiritual state?
- What are your goals as a Muslim and as a human being?
- How does Islam impact your personal identity?
- What is a human’s greatest barrier between him/her and God? (or just barriers in general)
- What is the relationship of man and God really about?
- What gives you the impulse/reason to believe in God and Islam?
- What do you do everyday to get closer to Allah swt?
- How does Islam affect the way you think?
- How do you see Islam in ‘secular’ subjects? (I HATE the term ‘secular’)
- What do you like/dislike/understand/don’t understand about Islam? (I think this is a VERY important question that is always avoided. I think the only way a person can address an issue is to ADDRESS it.)
- What are some goals you would like to have in this class?
An Islamic Studies teacher should be willing to shape some of the curriculum around the student’s interests/needs. So I think these questions are important. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, feel free to add to this list of questions to ask kids in an Islamic Studies class. Don’t feel like your suggestion it stupid–I really would love to know. Thanks!