Event Title

Teaching Standard Arabic to Second Generation Muslim Students at a Sunday School Located in the U.S. Midwest Region

Location

Bobo Room, Hodgin Hall, Third Floor

Start Date

8-11-2017 2:15 PM

End Date

8-11-2017 3:15 PM

Description

One of the major problems facing Muslim families in the US is the difficulty they encounter to teach their children standard Arabic. This is the case even for children who regularly attend Arabic Sunday Schools. One factor that contributes to this difficulty is that standard Arabic is not a language for everyday communication. Learning standard Arabic is crucial for Muslims because of its important role in reading and understanding the Quran (Islam’s Holy Book) and properly practicing Islam. This paper is an effort to address this problem. Specifically, I propose a novel direction that combines two effective learning approaches, namely, the funds of knowledge and the language experience approach to develop a rich, fun, engaging, and enticing curriculum. I implemented the elements of this direction at an Arabic Sunday School in the Midwest. To build a solid foundation for this paper, I reviewed extensive literature, conducted a survey, and interviewed a number of parents and students. My objective was to elicit the interests and needs of the Sunday school students. Given the relationship between standard Arabic and Islam that I mentioned earlier, I focused on exploring the religious funds of knowledge of the children and their parents as educational resources. A key result of my work is a detailed action plan that would help educators develop a customized curriculum/teaching units to improve the outcomes of teaching standard Arabic at Sunday Schools.

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Nov 8th, 2:15 PM Nov 8th, 3:15 PM

Teaching Standard Arabic to Second Generation Muslim Students at a Sunday School Located in the U.S. Midwest Region

Bobo Room, Hodgin Hall, Third Floor

One of the major problems facing Muslim families in the US is the difficulty they encounter to teach their children standard Arabic. This is the case even for children who regularly attend Arabic Sunday Schools. One factor that contributes to this difficulty is that standard Arabic is not a language for everyday communication. Learning standard Arabic is crucial for Muslims because of its important role in reading and understanding the Quran (Islam’s Holy Book) and properly practicing Islam. This paper is an effort to address this problem. Specifically, I propose a novel direction that combines two effective learning approaches, namely, the funds of knowledge and the language experience approach to develop a rich, fun, engaging, and enticing curriculum. I implemented the elements of this direction at an Arabic Sunday School in the Midwest. To build a solid foundation for this paper, I reviewed extensive literature, conducted a survey, and interviewed a number of parents and students. My objective was to elicit the interests and needs of the Sunday school students. Given the relationship between standard Arabic and Islam that I mentioned earlier, I focused on exploring the religious funds of knowledge of the children and their parents as educational resources. A key result of my work is a detailed action plan that would help educators develop a customized curriculum/teaching units to improve the outcomes of teaching standard Arabic at Sunday Schools.