Inspired by a game I played recently, I put together a game to play with extended family to try and get some learning going, as well as some activity (lots of running around!) and fun too!
You can play it for the wiladats of all of the Ahlul Bayt – why not try it for Imam Ali’s birthday which is round the corner! I have included the documents I’ve put together so far, and will keep adding different personalities over time as I do them Inshallah.
So how to play? You can do this just with your own families or do it on Zoom and challenge other families too! The host asks a question and gives the children some time to look up the answer if need be. Then the children need to rush and get something to show the answer. E.g. To show the answer 5, they may bring 5 pens, or a 5 fingered-glove!
I’ve also included information related to the question to add to their learning – this can be relayed to them once they’ve brought the object. The information will need to be paraphrased to be made simpler for younger children, or can be given in full to older children.
(Note: I’m a fan of collaborative games as opposed to competitive ones. So there was no scoring or noting who came first. The emphasis was on siblings working together to answer the questions, thinking of an object and taking turns to bring it!)
I’ve played this with two different sets of families and it’s been SO MUCH fun!
Here is a pic of them on Zoom with the objects they found to answer a question:
And here is one of all the items together (based on questions on the 9th Imam!). One of the answers is zero, which they are showing with their hands!
Here are some resources to help mark the life of Bibi Zainab:
A puppet show on her birth:
A poem about Bibi Zainab:
Children’s Hour special on Bibi Zainab@
A visual look on her life:
An animation on her role in Kerbala:
A short clip on Bibi Zainab by a Catholic priest:
A book on Bibi Zainab (suitable for older children) can be downloaded here.
Here is a craft idea – this was done after discussing her qualities:
Here is another craft idea based on her timeline as sent in by a mum:
“My 6 year old daughter created this art on canvas showing Bibi Zainab (as) on Siratul Mustaqeem guiding us, through the lessons we learn from her life, all the way to Jannah!
She is holding an alam, and on her superheroine cape are written her titles, ‘Sharikatul Husayn – …Imam Husayn’s partner in his mission to save Islam’ and ‘Aalima Ghayr Mu’allima – One who knows without being taught’ (title given by Imam Zainul Abideen, as Bibi used to conduct Islamic classes for the women of Madina and Kufa and was revered for her knowledge and wisdom).
She also included Bibi’s famous, powerful and most profound words, summing up her life’s philosophy of placing Allah’s (swt) pleasure at the centre of all she did and thought: ‘I see nothing but beauty’ – ‘Ma ra’aitu illa jameela’ when asked by Ibne Ziyad at his court how she found the events of Karbala.
She drew and captioned pictures to create a simple timeline of her life, from her blessed birth to her death at 57 years.
Born on 5/5/5 – 5th Jamadil Awwal 5AH
At 7 years – Bibi Fatema (as), her mother, and Rasulullah (saw), her grandfather, pass away
At 12 years – she got married to Abdullah bin Jaffar e Tayyar and they had 6 kids including Awn and Muhammad
At 32 years, Imam Ali (as) became the khalifa and they moved to Kufa with him
At 35 years, the martyrdom of Imam Ali (as) takes place
Bibi then moved back to Madina to support Imam Hassan (as) in his imamat
At 45 years, Imam Hassan (as) is poisoned and passes away
At 55 years, she witnesses the tragedy of Karbala, Kufa, Shaam, back to Karbala on Arbaeen – Bibi established the institution of Majlis Al Husayn, Allah’s University! – and then return to Madina
At 57 years, she passed away – most say in Sham but there are also reports that she’s buried in Cairo, Egypt or Madina”
One mum said: ‘We spoke about Bibi Zainab’s line “I saw nothing but beauty” and we should see beauty in everything because everything was created by Allah. We then made these binoculars using cardboard tubes, coloured paper and ribbon.’
One mum said: ‘We held a small family majlis at home and talked about Bibi Zainab’s role in telling the people what happened to her brother, Imam Husayn. We did a little experiment to demonstrate how she established the concept of a majlis with the following simple story using a pack of Skittles, a plate and some warm water:
“After Bibi Zainab returned home, she gathered a group of people” (Put a handful of skittles on a plate) “She told them to sit around her” (Get kids to help arrange the skittles in a circle around the plate) “Bibi Zainab told them about what happened in Karbala. This made people sad and they began to cry” (Slowly pour warm water in the middle of the plate so it covers the whole plate and skittles) “And as they cried, their love for the Ahlulbayt became even stronger and the message of Islam was spread” (watch as the colours from the skittles spread through the water to make a beautiful pattern)’