Islamic Holidays

Islamic Holidays
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A red book with the Islamic moon and star is overlaid over a background of sunset yellow and orange.

What is Islam?

Lesson Plans by Liane Hicks

The religion of Islam dates back to the 7th century in the ancient city of Mecca on the Arabia peninsula. Today, it is practiced by about 2 billion people all over the world! Islam is the world's second largest religion and its followers account for about 25% of the world's total population. The word Islam means peace and submission to God. Followers of Islam are called Muslims. They believe in one God, called Allah in Arabic, and that the Prophet Muhammad was the final messenger from God, bringing a message of peace and justice to the world.


Storyboard Description

Holidays are important in Islam! Have students illustrate and describe different Muslim holidays in a spider map

Storyboard Text

  • Eid Mubarak!
  • Eid al-Adha is the festival of sacrifice that marks the end of the Hajj. It occurs during the 12th month of the Islamic calendar and lasts 3-4 days. The holiday celebrates the story of Ibrahim who, through God's mercy, sacrifices a ram instead of his son. It is traditionally celebrated with the symbolic sacrifice of a lamb, goat, or other animal that is then divided into thirds to be shared equally among family, friends, and the needy. "Eid Mubarak" is a traditional greeting that means “Blessed feast/festival”.
  • Also called the Hijri New Year or Arabic New Year. The first day of the Islamic year is observed on the first day of Muharram, the second holiest month next to Ramadan. In 622 CE, Muhammad and his followers emigrated from Mecca to Medina, known as the Hijra. This became the beginning of the Islamic calendar. Muslims celebrate differently depending on the country, with fireworks, parades, and fasting.
  • Muharram Mubarak!
  • Mawlid, is the observance of the Prophet Muhammad's birthday (PBUH). It occurs in Rabiʽ al-Awwal, which is the third month in the Islamic calendar. The day differs between Sunni and Shia with the 12th being observed by most Sunnis and the 17th observed by most Shia. Mawlid is usually celebrated with a carnival in the streets, decorations, charity, and telling stories about the Prophet Muhammad.
  • Happy Malwid al-Nabi!
  • Eid means festival in Arabic. Eid al-Fitr is the Festival of the Breaking of the Fast, celebrated at the end of Ramadan. Friends and family get together and worship at the mosque, eat delicious food, give money to charity, and give children presents.
  • Ramadan is the ninth and holiest month. It is a month of fasting, prayer, reflection, and community. Muslims fast during the day, eating before dawn, and breaking their fast at sunset with a meal called iftar. Participating in fasting is a sacred reminder of those less fortunate, the importance of being grateful for what you have, and offering charity. Fasting is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and mandatory for all Muslims who are healthy and able, not including children, the sick, or pregnant women.
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