They say that Hajj is a once-in-a-lifetime journey, a journey that people dream of their whole lives to given the opportunity to embark on. By the grace of God, I was given an opportunity to go for Hajj as a student when I was 21 years old, along with my husband, and it is an adventure I will never forget. When you go there you experience an amazing sense of calm and peace and a feeling that you never want to leave!
As amazing as the journey was, it was also a difficult time for me because I left my 1.5 year old daughter behind. It was one of the most difficult things to do and my daughter was too young for me to explain what was going on. She didn’t understand why Mama and Baba were leaving. During the 3 weeks that we were gone, she stayed with my in-laws and she would wait for us by the door everyday wondering when we would come back.
Ten years ago there were not many Islamic resources or toys for children on the topic of Hajj. I would have loved to prepare my daughter for our departure and also given her something to play with while we were gone. It is great to see so much innovation and new product creation these days that fills the gap and provides our children with learning tools they can use to better understand their world.
My mother just went for Hajj this August and she would send us photos and video updates from her trip that my children would enjoy seeing everyday. When I was given the opportunity to review the book and doll set “Adventures of Imam Adam“, it couldn’t have come at a better time. The book brings children through the journey of Imam Adam from his home all the way to the Kabah in Mecca. He meets many different people and comes across many different challenges, while teaching the 5 pillars of Islam along the way. It reminds me a lot of Dora the Explorer, if you’ve ever read those books you’ll know that Dora goes through many adventures and teaches different learning concepts along the way before reaching her final destination.
The book set comes with the story book “Adventures of Imam Adam” and an Imam Adam doll with his little green backpack, and probably my children’s favourite part, a sweet little prayer mat inside. In our house we have more Muslimah dolls than we can count, so it was fun to have a male doll that we could add to our collection, and also that my son could relate to. He has 3 older sisters, so he loved being able to play with a doll of his own, and not feel left out in their play.
My children insisted I read the book to them everyday and we would talk about how Grandmama was at the Kabah and what she was doing there. It was great to be able to use the set and relate it to what was really happening in their children’s lives. It opened up topics for conversation and I was able to answer any questions my children had. Being an Early Childhood Educator, I really appreciate tools and resources that can make children’s learning fun and engaging. The book also comes with reminders and a glossary at the back of the book, so it is easy for children of any faith to understand and enjoy. I wish I had this set when I went for Hajj 10 years ago, and would definitely recommend it to parents who are going for Hajj, or who have a family member going for Hajj, or if you simply want to teach your children the 5 pillars of Islam.