The Friday Message - Issue No: 280 - World book day

wbdIssue No: 280
3rd March 2017
4th Jamadi Ul Thaani 1438 A.H.

Salamun alaykum,

Did your child receive from school a £1 book token yesterday?

Every year since 1998 on the first Thursday in March every child in full-time education in the UK and Ireland receives a £1 book token. The token can be swapped for one of specially produced £1 books or to get £1 discount off a full-price book.

What is the occasion?

To promote reading and publishing the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) organises the Annual World Book Day on 23rd April. In the United Kingdom, due to the Easter School holidays, the day is instead recognised on the first Thursday in March.

Reading Schemes:

In order to encourage children to read regularly, schools have put in place innovative programmes such as Home Reading Diary, Reading Passport, Story Sharing time and other schemes to develop and promote the habit of reading by children.

Why is reading so important?

When the time comes to approach education of any type, including teachings of Islam, reading comes naturally to humans. Reading is at the heart of all learning. Reading is a skill for life. It is also a catalyst for growth and development. The benefits of reading come like no other.
Evidence suggests that children who read every day not only perform better in reading tests than those who don't, but also develop a broader vocabulary, increased general knowledge and a better understanding of other cultures. The same holds even when reading is done for enjoyment.

The centrality of reading in Islam is emphasized by the fact that, the first revelation of the Noble Qur'an to Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.w. commenced with the verb : Iqra – Read. Does this not underscore the significance attached to reading, learning and gaining education? Numerous traditions reported from the Noble Prophet and Ahlul Bayt a.s. emphasise on reading. The fundamental message is to migrate from darkness of ignorance to illumination of knowledge. Reading is a key method for acquiring knowledge.

Do you take time to read?

Obviously the response here would be a resounding YES!. The questions that follow then are: What do you read? Is the Noble Qur'an one of the readings you do every day? How much reading of quality material is done as compared to trawling on the internet or reading postings on social mediums?

Having become aware of the World Book Day it is pertinent to reflect on following questions:

  • · Do you encourage your children to turn off video games, televisions in the house, and the social sites on mobile phones /computers, and to read a book either in published or electronic format?
  • · Do you take time to read daily and set an example for the family?
  • · Do you take time to read part of the Noble Qur'an every day?
  • · Do you read the Noble Qur'an in-front of your children and encourage them too, to read it every day?

Every time an adult picks up the Noble Quran and reads it in front of a child you are not only setting a role model that reading is important, but you reflect that the Noble Quran needs to be revered by reading it.

Wa ma tawfiqi illa billah

With Salaams and Duas,

Fazle Abbas Datoo
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Resident Alim
Wessex Shia Ithna Asheri Jamaat

Al Mahdi Centre
Fontley Road
Titchfield, Fareham
Hampshire, PO15 6QR

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