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Eid al-Adha Coming Soon-Muslim CultureGram

September 17, 2015

Eid al-Adha coming soon-Muslim Culture gram

Cultural competence is a key factor in enabling educators to be effective with students from cultures other than their own.

Cultural competence is having an awareness of one’s own cultural identity and views about difference, and the ability to learn and build on the varying cultural and community norms of students and their families. It is the ability to understand the within-group differences that make each student unique, while celebrating the between-group variations that make our country a tapestry. This understanding informs and expands teaching practices in the culturally competent educator’s classroom.

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I am excited to continue this series on culture and diversity.  I would like to extend a special thank you to my friend and colleague Dr. Randa Suleiman for today’s guest post.

Eid al-Adha coming soon-Muslim Culture gram

What is Eid al-Adha?Happy Eid

Many Muslims in the United States observe Eid-al-Adha, also known as the Feast of Sacrifice, each year. This festival commemorates Prophet Ibrahim’s (Abraham) willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah (God). This festival also marks the end of the Hajj (pilgrimage) to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, in which Muslims are required to make at least once in their lives. Eid al-Adha is known as the Feast of Sacrifice because it traditionally includes the sacrifice of an animal permitted for food (eg. a lamb) as an act of thanksgiving for Allah’s mercy.

What do people do?

Many Muslims in the United States celebrate Eid al-Adha with prayers and social gatherings. The Eid al-Adha services (prayer) can attract thousands of Muslims in various places. Many Muslims of many heritages, including Pakistan, as well as Eastern European and African countries, wear traditional clothes and share their national dishes. It is a time for prayer, sharing meals, handing out gifts, and wishing one another well.

Are there any days that students may miss school or not be able to do homework?

Yes. Most Muslim students will miss school on Thursday, September 24. Some students might miss Wednesday, September 23 as well.

Do I have to do anything?

No, you don’t have to.  For some students, may be their parents or relatives have participates in the pilgrimage. It would be thoughtful to check with your students and ask if they know anyone who traveled to perform the pilgrimage. The other are that you might be interested in is student support. You can help students’ make-up missing work, be available to answer questions, and help them understand what they missed in class.

Can they do their homework?

Most likely, students might not be able to complete their homework.  It is time for prayer, celebration, and social gathering. Students will spend the day with their family, relatives, friends, and members in the community. Some families might choose to make sure that their student complete homework the day before, but that might not be the majority of families.

None of my students missed a day last year, how come?

Muslim holidays are on the lunar calendar; they’re a slightly different time in our solar calendar each year.  Eid comes on different date every year. Sometimes, it comes on a weekend and students do not miss school. For some students, they might choose to come to school on Eid day for a half day or certain time especially if there is any major exams or project; usually high school students.

What should I say to them?

If you’d like to say something to your Muslim students, you can say, “Happy Eid.”

 

suleimanDr. Randa Suleiman is Assistant Professor in the College of Education and Leadership. Dr. Suleiman earned her M.A. from Alverno College, holds National Board Certification in Early Adolescent Science and holds her Wisconsin Principal and Curriculum Instruction license. She received her Ph.D in Educational Leadership from Cardinal Stritch University.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Plichta, Lisa M. permalink
    September 17, 2015 1:02 pm

    Thanks for these Culture Grams – we will be using them as examples in 2 of my courses next week. Thank you!

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