Islam day November 2017
On Wednesday 8th November 2017, we were pleased to welcome Mrs S Naeem into school to lead a day focused on Islam. Mrs Naeem is a primary school teacher by profession but currently lecturing in Primary Education at Anglia Ruskin University, as well as being a Muslim Chaplain at the university. She is a member of Essex’s Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education and was involved in the creation of the Religious Education syllabus in Essex. Mrs Naeem is very much in demand in local schools, presenting assemblies and lessons, and also receives school groups at the Chelmsford Mosque in Moulsham Street.
During the day, each year group attended a workshop where they learned more about:
- The history of Islam in the U.K. and in Chelmsford
- Islam around the world
- The links to and similarities with Christianity and Judaism
- Muhammad and the Quran
- The five pillars of Islam
Mrs Naeem shared various items with the children to look at and pass around and dressed some volunteers in traditional dress such as headscarves and caps. The children listened to a recording of the first chapter of the Quran read in Arabic and also a recording of the call to prayer.
In a whole-school assembly, the festival of Eid-ul-Fitr was explained and described and Mrs Naeem helped the pupils see the similarities in how this festival is celebrated and other religious festivals such as Christmas, Hanukkah and Diwali. Several children were able to demonstrate some of the various national costume that would be worn at this time in various countries around the world where Islam is practiced.
After school in the Barn, children were invited to show their parents a display of the religious items and cultural dress used in the presentations and discuss their learning during the day and we were pleased that so many families took the opportunity to drop in for a few minutes. We were grateful to some of our Muslim families who lent us some of their own belongings to share with the wider community in this way.
The day was very informative and interesting and provided a great opportunity to deepen our pupils’ understanding of aspects of the Islamic faith, learn about some of the culture and traditions of Muslims in the UK and in other countries around the world and to promote the British values of tolerance and respect for others. We look forward to engaging in other opportunities to develop and enrich our school community in similar ways this year.