School Choice & Charters

Textbooks Written for U.S. Muslims

By Mary Ann Zehr — May 16, 2006 1 min read
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A group of Muslim educators has published a set of Islamic-studies textbooks especially for American Muslim children and to serve the growing number of Muslim schools in the United States.

The authors of the texts wanted to ensure that student textbooks for Islamic studies are as engaging as the textbooks for social studies, math, and other subjects, said Nabil Sadoun, a Dallas-based educational consultant for Muslim schools who is the director of the project. They’re intended to teach “faith, high moral values, tolerance, and civic responsibility,” he said.

—Courtesy of the Islamic Services Foundation

BRIC ARCHIVE

The “I Love Islam” series of instructive textbooks for elementary school students was released in July and is in use in 70 schools, said Mr. Sadoun. He estimates that there are more than 300 Muslim schools in the United States.

The books were published by the Islamic Services Foundation, a Garland, Texas-based nonprofit organization, in collaboration with Brighter Horizons Academy, a Muslim school in Dallas. The textbooks can be ordered at www.islamicschoolbooks.com.

Mr. Sadoun said he is now working to develop textbooks for Islamic studies at the middle and high school levels.

The Level 1 “I Love Islam” book, intended for 1st graders, is full of colorful photos and other illustrations and uses 15 fictional characters, such as Leena, Omar, and Khalid, to convey content.

The characters appear in dialogues, such as one between Mrs. Mahmood and her son, Zaid, about the life of the Prophet Muhammad. “Allah chose him to be the last Prophet, and he taught us good things. He showed us how to be good Muslims,” says Zaid.

In a chapter describing the Muslim concept of ithaar, meaning “when you give away something you love to someone else who needs it,” the children reading the textbook are encouraged to collect money themselves that they can give to “the poor and the orphans.”

The textbook comes with a CD of Muslim songs and stories from the Quran.

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