Inside: We review a STEM toy that teaches children the message of the Quran through play. Have your children ever asked you why people are different colored? Binaye Blocks has two STEM based toys. We are talking about Dahlia and Ali at the Start of it All and what Binaye Blocks is all about.
I recently discovered these fun toys from Binaye Blocks . They teach children the message of the Quran through STEM. Impressive, don’t you think?
I love Islamic toys and books for my children. Filling their world with products that show them who they are and what it is like to be a Muslim, helps me in being intentional in my motherhood journey. As a young Muslim mother, growing children in a modern world, I believe I should use all the resources available to me in teaching my children about their Deen. Alhamdulillah, we have brands like Binaye Blocks who make our job so much easier.
About Binaye Blocks:
Binaye Blocks is a South African company who create toys and games for Muslim Children. They create innovative toys that promote understanding Islam and learning about the Message of the Quran. I found them through Instagram and was instantly hooked to find out more.
Please note: This product was sent to us for review but all the reflections are my own. Please read my full disclosure here.
Two years ago, Binaye Blocks was just an idea. Ebrahim Vahed – the founder, wanted to create toys that would teach children that there is more to the Quran than just spiritual knowledge. The Holy Quran has everything you need for life in this world and not just the Hereafter. Yes, you can learn science, astronomy and embryology through the Quran!
MashaAllah, Binaye Blocks has two STEM based toys that teach from the Quran now. These toys are built around specific verses of the Quran. They are weaved into a story and then an activity (STEM based) to go with it. Check out details on the Binaye.com site
About the Dahlia and Ali Series
Dahlia and Ali is the name of the STEM series. The brother and sister duo so far have discovered two verses from the Quran. One is called Dahlia and Ali – At the Start of it All and the other is Dahlia and Ali Learn Great Ideas from Little Creatures.
Each story have a story based around a verse and then a STEM based hands on activity for the children to play with it.
Why Children need STEM
As mothers know very well, children are naturally very inquisitive from birth. Asking questions, discovering how things work and exploring their newly learnt knowledge is a process of learning for them. Children, even when they are not taught, use science, technology, engineering and math in their daily play. If we guide them a little bit, they will continue to do so much more with it.
In my family, I am growing three little engineers. They are always tinkering and exploring. In the beginning, it started with me doing kitchen science experiments with them but now as they grow older, I find that only having the right tools and books in the house available is enough to get them started.
Dahlia and Ali at the Start of it All – review
We were sent Dahlia and Ali at the Start of it All for review. As soon as it came home, my kids were bee-ing around the box excited to get started.
The box contained a packet of construction set, three packets of clay, a book and a sheet of sunglasses stickers.
My eldest (11 years old) was very excited to get started so I assigned him the responsibility of testing the toys with his two sisters. He was more than happy to do it. In fact, he took all the pictures and even offered to write a review for me. 🙂
What is so special about Binaye Blocks
Here are the full features about the toy:
- The story: The book contains a story about a little boy named Ali and his elder sister Dahlia. They discover clay while playing in the garden. Dahlia tells Ali that God created human beings from sounding clay. They then proceed to build a printer that helps them make pottery from the clay they collected. The book contains the story as well as directions on how to make the toy and play with it.
- The toy: We loved the hands on toy. Children are very fond of construction toys or building blocks. My kids have so many types of them. The idea to build a clay printer to create items is genius! My kids loved the whole process of reading, following instructions to build the toy and then print out their clay pot. They were so excitedly waiting for their pot to dry. The whole process of pushing, squeezing into the extruder and then squeezing it out provides pressure to your child’s joints which in turn is very relaxing for your child’s sensory needs. If you know about sensory perception then you will appreciate that this toy scores on proprioceptive, sensory-motor and tactile skills. I am giving it an A+!
- The clay: The soft moldable air drying clay that comes with the pack is quite unique. It is soft, fluffy, foam-like when kept in its zippered pouch but when left to air dry, it solidifies into a foam. The soft moldable clay is perfect sensory play for children who love to squish and squash. Playing with clay or play dough enhances children’s strength, dexterity and ability to manipulate things with their hands that is so essential for every day tasks. My children had fun creating with this sticky clay. (Tip: Just remember to apply a little oil to the sides of the extruder before putting the clay in it so it doesn’t stick to the sides. After you are done you can scrape of the excess with a spatula. Whatever sticks can be pealed off after drying.)
- Introduction to Quranic verses: At the end of the book you will find the verses of the Quran mentioned in the story. We liked that it is in three translations – Sahih, Pickthall, Yousaf Ali, so you can talk in whichever translation language you follow.
- Words from the Quran: The last page contains words from the verses in Arabic and its translations. This is a great idea for children who are learning Arabic or doing Quran journaling.
- Sunglass stickers: If your family doesn’t prefer eyes in story books, then you can place these stickers to block them out.
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Our Verdict: How did we like Binaye Blocks
Its a great educational toy! Lots of opportunities for discovery, imagination and conversation. We love sensory play and building toys so this was a winner.
My 11 year old enjoyed testing and creating different objects while the preschoolers were more interested in learning how it is all happening. I was happy to see my 6 year old read the book by herself.
The Binaye Blocks toy is a great conversation starter on various topics. For example:
Why are we all a different color:
At around the age of 4-6 years, your child will ask you what color they are and why their friends or family is different. My eldest asked me what color he was when he was in Kindergarten. He asked me another time if he was a good color.
In my family we are all different shades of skin. My eldest daughter being very fair and the other one being a bit yellowish. My eldest is now getting darker or more Asian skin tone. We have had real snarky comments from them with ‘I am sorry I don’t like dark skinned people’ or that her sister was a ‘banana’. (This is just among siblings!)
My little one is a more accepting kind.
This book and toy, I found very helpful in talking to the children about skin. Clay comes in all color and God picked clay from different places on earth as we saw in the Verse from the Quran. It was thought provoking for my children.
Can we make real human beings?
Another question my kids asked was why can’t we make human beings like God did. We talked about Rooh and soul… how we should not imitate God. We also talked about Shirk (associating partners with God) and Biddah (innovation in religion).
Acceptance, Forgiveness and Unconditional Love.
The first try while making the clay pot was very difficult. So my son instead made a heart shape. Now it didn’t come out that perfect because they were just getting started. My kids made a face but still they wanted to keep the heart because it was ‘the first thing they ever made‘ with that toy.
I had to laugh. I found this the perfect opportunity to talk about how God forgave Adam (A.S) and Hawwa (A.S) even after they made a mistake. When you make something with your hand, with all your heart, how can you not love it?
When children make mistakes, ‘how can we parents still not love them?‘ Your mistakes don’t define who you are, you are you. You are our’s. God gave you to us. That is why we love you.
In short, this toy every time we have pulled it out, there is some other interesting thing to talk about. We love it.
Where to get Binaye Blocks STEM toys
At the moment, these toys are only available to order from the Binaye Blocks website. They ship worldwide. You can place the order and the toy arrives in 2 -4 weeks depending on where you are located.