Teaching Prayer to Children by Ms. Nehad Essam

Teaching Prayer to Children by Ms. Nehad Essam

I am Ms. Nehad from Egypt, a preschool teacher for more than five years and a Quran teacher. I have facilitated different learner eXperiences for various age groups, whether in the nursery stage or throughout the school years. I have also participated in numerous workshops and training sessions in schools and online. However, despite all that I have learned and practiced, I have always faced challenges with children of different levels and ages.

Therefore, and in line with what I have experienced through my learning journeys with FIRST-ADLX, I decided to design a learning journey or an Active Deep Learner eXperience inspired by the five domains of the framework. The main goal of this journey was to teach prayer to children. Consequently, I began by identifying the main and parallel learning outcomes and arranging them, starting with the attitude outcomes for the crucial role these outcomes play in designing and facilitating an Active Deep Learner eXperience that has a sustainable impact on the learners’ lives, then the skill learning outcomes, and the knowledge learning outcome. The outcomes were formulated as follows:

Main Learning Outcomes

By the end of this journey, learners will be able to:

Attitude Outcomes:

– sense the virtue of prayer

– appreciate the importance of prayer and learning it at an early age

– Develop an affection for prayer

– since Allah’s presence during its performance

Skills Outcomes:

  • perform prayer correctly

Knowledge Outcomes:

– Define prayer as the foundation of a believer’s faith and a pillar of Islam

– Recite the Hadith: “Command your children to pray when they are seven years old and beat them for it (prayer) when they are ten, and separate their beds (in sleep).”

– List the spiritual benefits of prayer

– List the steps of prayer and the number of units (rak’at) in each prayer

Parallel Learning Outcomes

By the end of this journey, learners will be able to:

Attitude Outcomes:

  • Enjoy the Islamic education sessions
  • Value time and adhere to it (perform prayers on time)

Skills Outcomes:

  • Enhance coloring skills
  • Improve concentration and attention to details

Knowledge Outcomes:

  • Realize that Muslims live in different countries and are similar all around the world


Performance Outcomes

In a couple of weeks, learners will be able to:

  • Perform prayers consistently and correctly on time with a present heart and deep respect


Sequence of Activities

The learning journey consisted of six activities: experience and learning activities (RAR), and were sequenced as follows:


  1. Opener: What’s in the box?

Readiness Increase:

I entered the classroom holding a box in my hand, in which I had hidden a prayer mat. I informed the children that I had placed something in the box that I use five times a day and that I would provide them with information one by one to help them figure out what was inside.

Activity Facilitation:

I began sharing information one by one, while the children participated with their answers until they figured out what was in the box. I said:

“It’s something we put on the ground and stand on.”

“It’s colorful and has a picture of a mosque on it.”

“My mother bought it for me from Mecca…”


  1. Learning Activity 1 (RAR): Educational Video

Readiness Increase:

I informed the learners to put on imaginary glasses and prepare to focus on the video. I asked them to raise their hands whenever they saw children praying one of the prayers. A volunteer repeated the instructions, and we began the activity.

Activity Facilitation:

The children watched the video and raised their hands whenever they saw a child praying. While they were engaged, I asked them about the number of units (rak’ahs) in each prayer. If necessary, I replayed parts of the video and performed the units alongside them. Then, I wrote down the prayers one by one on the board alongside the number of units.

Reviewing Actively:

I asked the children about what we did and what we learned from this activity. Then, I asked about the importance of learning the number of units and the significance of learning prayer (both for adults and children at their ages). I emphasized that prayer is the foundation of a believer’s faith and a pillar of Islam. Without it, the world cannot function properly, and there will be no success in the hereafter. Prayer helps us feel close to Allah and serves as a direct link between us and the Almighty. I also emphasized that Muslims around the world are similar and perform prayers all around the world.


  1. Energizer: Coloring the Prayer Mat

Readiness Increase:

I informed the children that they provided wonderful answers and now they can take a break from deep thinking and enjoy coloring a picture of a prayer mat in the way they like.

Activity Facilitation:

The children began coloring the pictures while I moved among them, assisting them in completing the task. I sharpened pencils, outlined borders, and even colored some parts with them. At the end of the activity, we displayed the pictures on the wall and positively commented on them.


  1. Learning Activity 2 (RAR): Simulation

Readiness Increase:

I informed the learners that it was time to apply the steps they had learned. I added that we would pretend to be praying the Fajr prayer. Then, I asked them about the number of units (rak’ahs) and invited them to list the steps before a volunteer was invited to lead the “prayer.”

Activity Facilitation:

While the children were pretending to be praying, I moved among them, corrected their posture, adjusted their gaze, and ensured everything was in order. I intervened whenever necessary to probe and assess.

Reviewing Actively:

I invited the children to share their feelings and any actions they used to perform incorrectly before it was corrected to them.


  1. Learning Activity 3 (RAR): Let’s Recite the Hadith

Readiness Increase:

I congratulated the children for their engagement throughout the journey and informed them that it was time to conclude the session with a noble Prophetic Hadith.

Activity Facilitation:

I read the Hadith and explained its meaning: “Teach your children prayer when they are seven years old, and discipline them for it when they are ten, and separate their beds (in sleep).” Then, I recited it while the children repeated it multiple times. Next, I invited a volunteer to recite it, and the other children echoed it after him. We continued reciting it until the end of the activity’s time.

Reviewing Actively:

I asked the learners about what we did in this activity and what we learned. I highlighted the importance of obeying our parents and the significance of prayer at an early age.


  1. Closing Activity: Express Your Feelings in a Word


I asked the children, “How do you feel about today’s session?” and I pulled feelings such as “happy,” “excited,” “joyful,” “challenging,” etc.


Implementing the Domains of FIRST-ADLX

Throughout the journey, I applied the five domains of FIRST- ADLX Framework in various places and stages within the design and facilitation processes. Here is a summary of my implementation of the five domains:


The Domain How It Was Implemented
Domain 1:

Focusing on the Learner Behaviors


–         I called the learners by the names they preferred.

–         I gave them the opportunity to lead the prayer, recite the Hadith, and choose colors.

–         I listened to all of them, and encouraged less participative learners to speak up and take initiative.

Domain 2:

Interacting within Positive Group Dynamics


–         I monitored them, facilitated their work, and ensured everyone’s participation.

–         I made sure the learners exchanged only positive comments on the pictures.

–         I invited them to share their feelings from time to time.

–         I motivated them with encouraging and supportive words.

Domain 3:

Reviewing Activities within RAR

–         I considered the three stages in the learning activities (the three steps of the RAR model):  Readiness Increase- Activity Facilitation – Reviewing Actively.
Domain 4:

Sequencing within Session Flow



–         I designed and facilitated eXperience and learning activities taking into consideration the energy levels when arranging the activities to avoid exhaustion and boredom.

–         I used different supplementary tools (image, video, riddle, simulation, reading, and repetition).

Domain 5:

Transforming Learning into Performance


–         I invited the learners to simulate reality and perform the group prayer, as shown in the pictures below.




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