Updated: Nov 4
Ramadan/Ramazan ends with Eid al-Fitr on Friday, April 21, marking the last day of the month long celebration of Ramadan. A celebration that usually involves prayer, fasting and spending time with friends and family, there are other significant aspects of Ramadan that we've seen our classrooms participating in over the past month. Through art and storytelling, our classrooms embraced the holiest month of the Muslim culture and learned about the month long celebration.
The Muslim year follows the lunar calendar, with a new month starting with each crescent moon. This is especially important during Ramadan, when the sighting of a crescent moon marks the end of Ramadan and therefore the end of the fasting period. Our classrooms created Crescent Moon and stars crafts, to signify this importance. You may have already seen these around our centre, hanging on their creative boards and in windows.
Tasbih Prayer Beads
In many cultures around the world, prayer beads are used in meditation and prayer. Muslim prayer beads are called Tasbih, and can be used to help improve focus and experience in both daily tasks and spiritual practice. Our classrooms used beads and string to make their own Tasbih, in personalized colours, patterns and styles.
Henna plays a significant role in Islam, and is often used during festivals and celebrations. It is an incredibly delicate art, that takes many hours to apply to the hands, arms and body. Many Muslims see Henna as a symbol of happiness, and after a month of fasting Henna is used to help celebrate and show up as your best self. Our classrooms felt inspired to create their own Henna art on paper hands to represent the celebration of Ramadan. In these photos, you can see that the Crescent Moon is represented in Henna body art, as well.
The end of Ramadan marks a new celebration, Eid-al-Fitr, which translates to "festival of the breaking of the fast". As explained above, a new month begins at the sighting of a new crescent moon. Because this date changes every year according to the Islamic calendar, sometimes it's tricky when and where the new moon will be spotted in the night-sky. And if the moon cannot be seen, due to cloudy conditions, Ramadan continues for another day. But when the new crescent moon is spotted in the sky at the end of Ramadan, and seen by all, thus marks the end of Ramadan and the signifier that it's time to break the fast, Eid-al-Fitr. Our classrooms represented this through their crescent moon creations, and Eid Mubarak Shiny lanterns.
We were so happy to see all the ways our classrooms celebrated Ramadan. Our centre is home to many cultures, and it's important that we continue to honour and acknowledge them.