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Muslim Homeschooler is Back!

November 16, 2011

Bismillah

Muslim Homeschooler is back, though she is more of a Muslim Mommy these days.

Some major changes my life went through in the past year, in order of importance:

– The M key on my keyboard ran away.
-We, as in my husband and I (oh did I mention that I got married?) went for Hajj last year.
 – I got married to a great man.
 -I had a baby girl.
-I had an emergency c-section. Remembering it makes me want to cry.

-I like my mother-in-law🙂. She’s cool.
-I started a home-based business via Etsy.

Major changes, yes. I feel like a totally different person. I lost so much of my former self, yet gained so much. Anyways, I’ll be back for something more exciting once I’ve had a chance to rest my vegetative mommy brain which had to wake up twice last night.

MuslimHomeschoolers has Moved!!

June 24, 2010

MuslimHomeschoolers is now www.muslimhousehold.com.

Discipline

April 1, 2010

So… I was wondering… How do YOU discipline your kids?? What do you do when they start acting fresh and answering back with witty comments for which you have no match? What WOULD or do you do if they say “stupid” or “idiot”?

Is good ol’ fashioned spanky the best way to go?
Or perhaps yelling…
Or threatening…
Or isolating (time out!)
Or…

I’ve been wondering about this quite a bit. I’ve been around lots of kids lately… ranging from almost 2-11 and every parent obviously has their unique approach. But some just don’t work. And some just leave you SO frustrated… You feel like pulling your hair out and shutting yourself in your room, not wanting to see those kids ever again!

Heh, being a parent is already one tough job, but MOST parents send their kids to school, which means they don’t have to deal with them AS much. When you’re homeschooling your kids, it’s so much harder. I’ve also noticed that a lot of times, it’s hard to have patience while teaching your own child. It’s pretty easy to just lash out on them when they don’t understand something or do it the wrong way or do SOMETHING (even if it’s the tiniest thing in the world) wrong. I personally believe that discipline isn’t just for the kids, it’s for you as well. I know, I know… I don’t have much of an idea what it’s like raising kids (yet), but I try to learn from everyone and everything before I have kids of my own… (I kind of think it’s important to start training yourself from before… successful parenting isn’t one of those things that come naturally. That’s a lie.)

What is your unique approach? How well does it work?

Sadie and Maud

February 22, 2010

Maud went to college.
Sadie stayed at home.
Sadie scraped life
With a fine-tooth comb.

She didn’t leave a tangle in.
Her comb found every strand.
Sadie was one of the livingest chits
In all the land.

Sadie bore two babies
Under her maiden name.
Maud and Ma and Papa
Nearly died of shame.

When Sadie said her last so-long
Her girls struck out from home.
(Sadie had left as heritage
Her fine-tooth comb.)

Maud, who went to college,
Is a thin brown mouse.
She is living all alone
In this old house.
Gwendolyn Brooks

hahahaha. I love this😀. I don’t endorse bearing babies under your maiden name, but the point is… going to college doesn’t have to mean you ‘ll have a great life. Take Maud for example😀.

Organizing the Mind Clutter – Memorizing Quran – Part 1

February 16, 2010

This is something I wrote in my “journal” and thought I’d share it. It’s just a bunch of things I think I needed to have (or revive once in a while) if I wanted to make hifdh one of my priorities. This is a reminder to myself before anyone else.

Sleep with a yearning… dreaming of the day you will finally accomplish your goal, your dream… what would it feel like? Imagine the overwhemlimg happiness your heart will feel, try to feel it at thatmoment.. have a strong urge, so strong, you can feel your heart thumping when you think about what you have to accomplish. The sense of urgency, the yearning MUST be constantly renewed! Alsmost everyday..

Keep a list of motivations with you… why are you doing what you’re doing? Why do you want this thing so badly?

Be fresh and clean before starting. Honestly, you can’t sit down and memorize looking like a melted ice cream made of yukhy sweat. One look at the mirror would make you wanna go back to bed or something. Freshen up. I can’t put my mind on anything when I don’t feel clean. Your physiology has a lot to do with the state of your mind… which is why wudhu rocks so much😀. And perfume is awesome too. You see, this is when you put perfume on! When you pray and memorize or do ibadah, not when you go out (unless your going out without some perfume is a risk for humanity). Clean your “memorization nook” clean, free of clutter. It messes with your mind.

Form a web of consistency – EVERYDAY! Don’t miss even ONE day! It will mess up your entire schedule/cycle. Before fajr is the best time for memorizing… or even after fajr.

“The night of the true student of knowledge differs from the nights of the heedless and the negligent. His/her nights are filled with worship standing before Allah (SWT) whereby he asks him of His blessings, seeks forgiveness for his shortcomings, requesting all that he wishes for and beseeching him in his complaints… The scholars never thought that there could be a student of knowledge or a person of ‘ilm who slept the whole night without there being some form of worship therein. In fact, they used to criticize anyone who fell short in that!!”

It can be hard at first to wake up and hour before fajr, but if you take the necessary steps, it becomes easier.

First, ask for Allah’s help.

Sleep early. k. I know that probably doesn’t sound cool… but face the facts. If you sleep at 1 am, there is no way you’ll wake up at 5… and if you were to wake up, you’d probably just fall right back down, thinking you were actually dreaming, and then you’d wake up in the morning feeling like a failure😦. Boo hoo.

Don’t touch that shaitan button! Do they have alarms without that unmentionable thing!? Cause if they did, life would be a lot easier don’t you think (oh but wait, we’d just turn the alarm OFF instead!)? Once you form the habit of waking up at a certain time, you won’t even need that alarm clock… as much. Don’t ever think you can wake up on your own because you can’t. It’s CRITICAL that you constantly CONSTANTLY ask for Allah’s help, for NOTHING is possible without Him.

Get rid of the shaitan –  Say authubillah as soon as you wake up. Take Allah’s name and get rid of shaitan’s knots and get up right AWAY! Don’t stall and skip all the thinking. You know the whole… “oh yeh I’ll get up in 5 minutes… ugh stupid alarm clock, it’s so loud… oh my bed feels really comfy… i’ll get up in 5 minutes and… (then u start thinking of everything you needa to today and then you fall back asleep)…”

k, that feels better🙂 I needed a reminder.

Exploring College Options

February 14, 2010

Bismillah.

Sooo… homeschoolers and college. How do you do it? Do you get a diploma? Will colleges and universities accept homeschoolers? Perhaps we could opt for a GED? CLEP? Dual enrollment? What’s up with AP? Aaaahhhh!!! The list is never ending. And researching all the possible options causes anxiety, increases your stress, and well, frankly, you’ll probably never get all your answers most of the time.

Right now, I am graduating from high school and will be attending college in the fall, insha’allah. I’ve gone through the entire process on my OWN. No parents help, nothing, except advice from friends here and there, online research, talking to the principal of the Islamic school, hearing stories from other homeschooled college graduates… things like that. I do think I’ve gotten a pretty good insight into how things work. My goal is to present all the possible options I am aware of.

Let me make a very important note on diplomas. You don’t need one. This is no doubt the most important concern parents have. But let me clarify again. You don’t need an official diploma. You must, however, meet all the credit requirements and have a well organized TRANSCRIPT. (I now wonder whether the transcript I sent in was good enough. Ya Allah!)

It’s very important, I think as a homeschooler, to have a head start on college through dual enrollment and AP courses. They will both save time and money and grant high school as well as college credits. It is DEFINITELY the way to go. You will save almost TWO years worth of college tuition. Dual enrollment is available in many community colleges and university. You’ll have to contact the college for specific information, but I’ll give you a gist of the program. Basically, you will be taking college classes during your high school years and it will allow you to earn high school credit ALONG with college credit. It is FREE. You just have to spend some money on textbooks😀 but that’s not a biggie. AP courses (Advanced Placement), on the other hand, are a lot tougher than college courses. They’re meant for people who are SERIOUS. And when you apply to a university with lots of AP credit, it boosts your application because it shows that you’re willing to accept challenges and face them. I love taking AP. Yeh, I think they’re fun, hehe! You can take AP courses online, you can develop your own curriculum after intense research on what is used, though that might be difficult unless you can get an expert in the field to help you out. I tried studying AP Psychology on my own by reading the textbook and taking practice tests and stuff, but it was too late😦. I started half way into the school year and with so many other AP courses, it wouldn’t be possible for me. But if you give yourself time and have the right resources, I believe it’s possible for homeschoolers to prepare for AP exams on their own terms. Oh yes, the AP exam. In the month of May, AP exams are administered and this is what counts most. Your score on the exam. For more information on AP courses and exams, check out: About AP from CollegeBoard.

Another great option is taking CLEP. It’s ALMOST like AP, but less rigorous. Say you’re well-read in a certain subject like World History, but you can’t prove it. You’ve studied it passionately during your high school years and you think you know more about the history of the world than you’re supposed to for your level (a.k.a you’re at a college level ’cause you’re an awesome nerd)… then CLEP it :D! You’ll get college credit for it. And again, this will help you finish college earlier than most people. Isn’t that cool? The exam doesn’t have a specific date, you can take it whenever you want. And it doesn’t cost much either. Click HERE for more info on CLEP from CollegeBoard (CollegeBoard dominates the test world, doesn’t it :D).

Ah, the glorious, majestic SATs… one can never escape from it’s splendor. Seriously, you can’t. Well, you can. But they’re easy. I think you should still take it no matter what. Oh and for the record, people make a big fuss about it, but its not a big deal. You don’t need to take an expensive SAT prep class. Just get The Official SAT Study Guide and practice and practice and DRILL your brain and get acquainted with the test. Become best friends. The more you practice, the better. It’s that simple. Oh but hey, I haven’t taken it yet! But I will be in March, inshallah, and the practice tests are… pieces of cake. I enjoy them. If you have problems with Math though, then you might want help (like me! May Allah bless the brain of my awesome math tutor cum friend with more brain cells which she can kill with her ninja math love). It’s also a great idea to take the PSAT before taking the SAT. It’s just a practice and it doesn’t count for anything much, unless you want to get the National Merit Scholarship… which I never really figured out. The requirements and all… Lastly, don’t get carried away with all the tests and exams!!

And my advice to you :)… forget GED. It DOES have stigma associated with it and it’s the road people who DROP out take. The GED doesn’t show that you’re competitive and WILLING to accept academic challenges. And from what I know of it, it’s VERY easy. 75 minutes for 50 questions… Seriously, that’s a piece of cake.

As for scholarships, all you need are community service hours and proof that you are indeed needy/worthy of receiving a scholarship. It’s best to apply for EVERYTHING you can and you might just get accepted in something or the other.

Just a note. I’m not trying to make anyone feel as though they have to rush through high school or college but honestly, I believe it’s BEST to finish as soon as you can because there’s more to life than just academic accomplishments. Oh and like they say, one can never stop learning, for knowledge must be acquired from the day we are born to the day we die. We must learn to APPLY what we learn and not just store everything in our brains. And implementation can be in the form of perception and how you think. So when you’re done with school and you’re only 18 or 19 or 20… You’re…. well, free😀. You’re not restrained to a system anymore. You can learn on your own terms once again (from homeschooling to college to homeschooling yourself once again… make sense?).

And that will be it. Please feel free to add any other helpful ideas or info! And if you have any questions… I love questions😀.

To a Mother…

November 9, 2009

*I wrote this sonnet for Lit class… And I have to say, I’m proud of it😀 since it’s the first time I successfully found rhyming words.*


To a Mother…

They rough hands more soothing than lavender,
Thy motherly whiff more calming than chamomile.
Thy resistance is strong as that of a fir,
And they beauty and grace condensed to a smile.

They anger can be more stinging than ginger,
Yet thy good humored words more sweet than honey.
They wise advice more euphoric than pepper,
Thy velvety touch softer than that of a bunny.

You bore me patiently as you would a garden,
Until flowers flawless and leaves whole.
You ensured I felt I was in Eden,
When in reality, for you, it was a pit hole.

I cannot repay in worldly measures,
Thus your reward shall be heavenly pleasures.


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