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    Arts Educators Seek Strategies for Ramadan
    Posted on 05/18/2018
    CAIR representatives speaks to teachers about strategies

    Educators Seek Strategies for Ramadan

    The Visual and Performing Arts Program offered a professional development session on May 2 in partnership with the Center for Arab and Islamic Resources (CAIR) and Family Partnerships.

    The workshop at Garfield High School was created in response to teacher requests to provide identity-safe spaces in schools for Muslim families and improving relationships through communication. With more than 63 attendees, strategies were shared on how to support students during Ramadan, which began in Seattle on May 17.

    Ramadan is a month-long spiritual period of fasting and prayer. During Ramadan, Muslims do not eat or drink from dawn to dusk, and the month culminates with Eid al-Fitr, a three-day celebration that involves praying, visiting relatives, giving gifts to children, remembering deceased loved ones and helping those experiencing poverty.

    Here are some ideas that CAIR presented to teachers on how to support students during and outside of Ramadan:

    • Understanding. Teachers can schedule exams and other assignments around the holidays.
    • Empathy. During Ramadan, teachers can allow students who are fasting to be given engaging tasks in other areas during lunch. Educators can monitor students for overheating or dehydration and offer water if needed.
    • Engagement. Schools can engage with Muslim families in focus groups or methods that work best for the families to learn more about their practices, customs and how families’ gifts and talents can be brought into the school.

    Seattle Public Schools seeks to create safe and welcoming environments for all students. This professional development opportunity is one of the many ways that educators are working to ensure identity-safe spaces for students and their families.

    Photo courtesy of CAIR-WA