I wanted to share how my 7 and a half year-old son, TJ, is memorizing the Quran. There are many Muslim parents that wish that their sons will become a Hafiz (a person that has completely memorized the Quran) but very few might have the resources, or perhaps more accurately, very few might think that they have the resources for their sons to memorize the Quran. So I wanted to share my model with you. This might not work for everyone but masha’Allah, by the grace of God, it has been working for our family.
This is the daily routine of TJ. Currently, he is having vacations so we are sleeping in and his morning Qari Sahib ( a term of respect in Urdu for someone who recites/teaches the Quran) comes later on in the day but when the schools are open, here is how TJ’s day is.
TJ is enrolled in the Manarat school system but he only goes there for exams. So for all purposes, he is home-schooled. If your son is enrolled in a homeschool program, it will be very close to TJ’s model.
TJ gets up at 8:30 am. He does his wudhu (ablution for getting ready to read the Quran). Some people might not do wudhu before touching the Quran but we, Pakistanis, do it so it might be more of a cultural aspect than a religious aspect – I am not sure about that. Anyway, TJ comes downstairs and gets ready for Qari Sahib. TJ has two people helping him memorize the Quran. We call the first one Qari Sahib 1 (let’s for this article refer to him as Q1) and we call the second person, Qari Sahib 2 (Q2 for brevity).
Q1 comes at around 8:40 am. He and TJ will usually memorize about 10 – 15 new verses and sometimes more and sometimes less. It depends upon how TJ has retained the verses taught to him the previous day. If he has retained them, Q1 will do more – if not, he might do less. As TJ grows up insha’Allah, his lesson size will increase.
Now, memorization always begins from the end of the Quran and keeps on moving to the beginning of it. The reason is that towards the end of the Quran, the Chapters (or Surahs) are smaller and easier to memorize and as we move to the beginning, the Surahs start becoming longer. Quran is divided into 30 equal parts and has a total of 114 Surahs.
TJ started in June of last year and at this moment he has masha’Allah memorized the 30th part of the Quran and is working on the second last Surah of Part 29. Now every day, when Q1 comes in, he teaches TJ the new verses but then also, listens to the Surahs of Part 30 – going from front of Part 30 to back of Part 30, listening to about 5-6 Surahs. Q1 also just lets TJ plain read the verses that TJ will be memorizing for the next day – that’s called Nazara whereas the revision of the Surahs from the previous Part (currently 30) is called Murajiya.
Once Q1 is done, we write in a note book, name of the Surah and the verse numbers that TJ memorized for the day, what he revised from the Part 30 (Murajiya) and what he read in preparation for the next day (Nazara).
Now Q1 will leave some homework which is usually listening to the verses that TJ has memorized during the current day and also preparing him for the Murajiya for the next day. This is the part where Q2 comes in. Currently, we have Q2 hired on the Internet. He lives physically in Badin, Sindh, Pakistan but we connect on Skype and he will revise the stuff that Q1 wants listened to or revised.
Now we are following a specific model. We have a primary Hifz teacher (Q1) and a secondary one (Q2). Q1 will be the person doing the actual memorization but Q2 helps retain it and check it. Now there have been situations where Q1 was not available on weekdays and then Q2 would initiate new memorization lessons as well and Q1 and Q2 were both advancing each other. But at this time, Q1 is the leader and Q2 is the follower so thus TJ will be emulating Q1′s accent and Tajweed (pronunciation of Arabic letters) style.
I think, you don’t have to live in a Muslim centric area to do do Hifz. If you are able to perhaps find one person who can do the main Hifz and this person has the good accent and Hifz technique, you can always have another backup Qari Sahib from places like Quran Reading or Muslim Academy or another online Hifz teacher, for revision. Or perhaps you could have both teachers online or perhaps you could just have one teacher in the primary role and you could help your kid with the revision. There are parents who do both roles of the primary teacher and the revision one. I just wanted to share my model to give an idea to anyone who wanted to know where to start.
Here is the rest of TJ’s routine. Q1 leaves at about 10:20am. TJ has had a full cup of honey milk while he sat with Q1. The sugar in the drink keeps his brain energy going, masha’Allah. After memorization, TJ will have breakfast and then his regular school time happens between 11am – 2pm. During his study time, he has 1-2 breaks. After study, TJ will have lunch and play outside until Maghrib. At Maghrib (currently happening at 5:15 pm), after he has come back from the mosque, he will take a shower and then sit down for Q2. He has another glass of honey milk. The lesson with Q2 is about an hour-long. I try to get him in bed by 10pm on school days. Q2′s timings might fluctuate from month to month depending upon prayer timings.
Remember, keep it simple and keep your goals practical. In the end, if the child has memorized the Quran, it doesn’t matter if he/she did it in 3 years or 7 years or more. Masha’Allah! Keeping the main memorization in the beginning of the day makes it easier to remember. Also giving the child a shower before revision makes him relaxed and the drink keeps him hydrated and strong. You don’t want the revision too close to the actual memorization – let the actual sink in before you hear it. Keep in mind, that Q1 is revising it as well. Q2 is just additional help.
May Allah make it easy for all of us who are trying to memorize the Quran. Amin.