Teaching Children to Love Salah With One Trick
Teaching children to love to pray Salah from from a young age. Everything about Namaz for kids and how to gently encourage them to pray Salah from from the beginning.
As part of the Kids in Ramadan series, lets talk about how to set children up on the foundation to pray Salah from a young age.
- Want to Raise Your Children through Positive Parenting Methods?
- How to Teach a Child to Pray in Islam
- Things that encourage children to pray Salah
- What else can you do to encourage the love of Salah?
- ACTION STEPS -What you can do teach your child to pray Salah now
We all deal with children who neglect their prayers or sometimes outright reject it. Today, I share tips that have helped me teach my children to perform their prayers and on time.
This post was written when my son was 7 yrs old. Many years have passed since I wrote this. He is 14 now MashaAllah. I have three more children who I have used the same techniques with. Many readers have written in telling me how much this post has helped them start their children on the right track to love salah. Alhamdulillah, this was the right way to teach a child. Read on.
One of the first actions that a person will be held accountable for on the Day of Resurrection is for his prayers. If a believer’s prayer is sound then all his deeds will be sound too. Praying is not about just being able to remember God but also about obedience and responsibility.
And all of this can only be accomplished by creating a home environment that is positive and nurturing. When you are positive and loving, you will raise confident and responsible children. In this post I will be talking a great deal about my positive parenting methods of raising children to love Salah.
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How to Teach a Child to Pray in Islam
Teaching your child to love salah doesn’t come easy.
He needs to be taught to love his prayer. It is instructed that you start teaching a child to observe his prayers from when he is 7 years old so that he can perfect it as he grows up. Introducing them to prayer would of course start early. They will watch you and learn too.
Most parents know that it isn’t easy to teach your child to pray all the time. They may pray some times when they are in the mood but praying five times a day…? Well… there will be come a time when they will outright say ‘No’. How do you handle this? Let me share my experience with growing little Momins (believers).
Recommended: Printable Salah Chart
How my parents made me fall in love with prayer.
As a child, I loved watching the Salah being performed at the Holy Mosque at Makkah. I would sit and watch it till the end and at times my siblings would too. In Ramadan, we would let the TV run all the while the Taraweeh was on. TV wasn’t allowed in Ramadan for us but my parents would deliberately turn it on at Taraweeh time so that we watch it. Often, they would take us to the mosque too. It inspired us to recite the Quran like the Imam and often we would imagine we were little Imams too.
When cousins came over, we would perform the prayers together letting one of the older boys be the Imam. This was our ‘namaz for kids‘.
I am sure my parents felt pride seeing their children on the Right path. Fast forward to now, I am growing my son 12 years old and naughty. He knows more Quran than I did at his age and he prays at the mosque as often as he can too. But he wasn’t always this way… we struggled for a brief time when he would reject us and neglect his prayers. Here is what I did.
Teach your child to say the Adhan and Iqamah.
My husband would often feel disheartened when our son started talking back and telling us that he didn’t want to pray. I felt amused because we were talking about a six year old at that time.
My husband would often sit with our son and talk to him about the importance of prayer, he would take him on his lap and tell him stories from his own childhood how he enjoyed prayer time with his father. Ofcourse, Hubby wanted his son to be like him. He wants start father-son relationship that started with salah binding their hearts together. I understood that longing. After all every father wants that. Then again…
Prayer means obedience. If a child can pray, it means he will abide by his responsibilities. We talked to him about all these things but it didn’t work. he was six years old and a little child. We gave him stars… points… rewards but still it didn’t inspire him.
Then one day….
I told him that he was the Imam of our house. I told him that as soon as it was time for prayer, he should get up, give the Iqamah (call for prayer signalling that prayer would start soon) and we would all gather behind him so that he could lead the prayer.
It worked like a charm. I had filled his power bucket and we had together filled his attention bucket. He was the Imam!
My husband would feel offended at first that I was making him pray behind his son but after a little encouragement he understood that something’s can be compromised. He was praying his own prayer independently standing behind him (because children don’t lead adults in prayer but you know…. 😀 ) Ever since that day, we have a little Imam in my house.
What to do when you have more than one child?
If you have two or more boys, who says the Iqamah, right? Alternate. Or the youngest is the Imam. The older goes to mosque. 🙂 Teach the elder one to help his sibling. I am a strong believer that siblings are the best of teachers. 🙂
What do you do when you have girls?
I am a girl. 🙂 That said, I loved to show off my prayer to my family. This tip has worked with my nieces too.
Remember though that girls sit in the same line as the other ladies when they are leading the prayer and they don’t lead boys. They have to lower their voice too.
The purpose of this tip is not to make Imams out of children. It is to make them feel confident in their prayer and enjoy praying. I hope you benefit from this tip, InshaAllah.
Recommended: How to Grow Children Who love to Pray Salah Age by Age.
This is my one trick that personally has helped me with getting my son to pray. Do you have a tip for us? Go ahead and try it. Grow your own little imam!
Things that encourage children to pray Salah
Here are a few more tips that can help your child observe his prayer and grow up to love praying.
- Structure their day around the 5 daily prayers. Our Islamic way of life is that day begins with Fajr and ends at Ish’aa. If you want your child to pray five times a day, there is nothing more effective than waking them for Fajr to watch you pray and then letting them go to bed right after Ish’aa so they get up fresh and early.
- Teach by example. Our kids watch us more than they listen to us. If you pick up a mussalla as soon as the Adhan is called. So will your child. They will watch you and by nature want to be like you.
- Give them their own mussalla. Let them love to be little believers with all their own stuff. Give them skull caps and hijabs too.
- Show them the right way to wadhu. I have seen by personal experience that the more perfect a child is at his wadhu the more better will be his concentration.
- Call out the Iqamah. My husband has a habit of calling out the Iqamah if he prays at home. My kids go running when they hear him. They call out like him too.
- Take them to the mosque. Let them see that it is the way of life.
Your dua (prayer) for your children matters too.
Include your children in your prayers and specifically ask the Almighty to guide them.
رَبِّ اجْعَلْنِیۡ مُقِیۡمَ الصَّلٰوۃِ وَمِنۡ ذُرِّیَّتِیۡ ٭ۖ رَبَّنَا وَتَقَبَّلْ دُعَآءِO my Lord! make me one who establishes regular Prayer, and also (raise such) among my offspring O our Lord! and accept Thou my Prayer.” (Surah Ibraheem 14, ayah 40)
What else can you do to encourage the love of Salah?
Fill their world up with toys and products that teach them about their way of life. I have personally seen that kids who grow up with toys that speak about their culture, grow up accepting and feeling secure in practicing it.
Buy your child their own Musalla (prayer mats) and hijab or Kufi caps. Let them enjoy it. Buy them toys that help them pray. Create an environment that is an Islamic way of life!
We highly recommend MY SALAH MAT in teaching your child to love salah. This innovative prayer mat helps children learn to pray. You can read my full review here.
ACTION STEPS -What you can do teach your child to pray Salah now
Are you trying to raise children who love praying Salah but don’t know where to start with encouraging them? Here is what you can do right now:
- First : Fix their routine. Grab our Calm Confident Children Routines Bundle that will help you set stable daily rhythms for your child whether they go to school, homeschool or study online. It will also help you in creating a positive home environment for your child.
- Next: Get your child a Musalla.
- Then: Whenever it is Salah time, simply invite your child to stand with you in prayer.
Here are more posts in the Ramadan Series:
Jzk for your lovely post. I have a five year old son and this is very inspirational insha’Allah I will take this on board when he starts his prayers, iA.
Awesome tip! I’ll definitely give this a try once I have my own kids one day. 🙂
Completely agree about setting an example. That teaches kids more than anything else, and that’s how I learned from my father.
Very good sharing of how we should lead our children by example. It brings me back then to those years where i did the same. I have 3 boys and 2 girls 10 to 5 yr olds. I alternate them in going to Jumaah prayers so they will see in actual how salah is done in mosque and among a large number of people adding to their initial appreciation of what Islam Ummah is all about. I also trained them how to fast starting to abstain food up to recess time, so they
do not have an intake from 7 to 9:30 am. But they also wake up for the
sohoor. I also enroll them to the madrasah every summer, so they have 2
months of concentrated islamic learning experience. I believe those children who at an early age learn Islam will have more chances of being a Muslim adult. I learn and discovered that by experience. At present, modesty aside and in Allah swt will and blessings, i now have a 5 grown up professionals, all Muslim practicing adults, 2 lawyers, a nurse who has pursued a medicine aduated a course at the moment and 2 certified public accountant, one of
whom has graduated Masters in Islamic Finance and Banking in one of the universities in Malaysia. Alhamdulillah and truly Allah swt is Great. Allahu akbar! Shukran fornthis opportunity of shring mine too.
Jzk for sharing. I am sure many will appreciate your experience. We can all learn to parent better by watching how others are doing it. Thank you for sharing such excellent tips. MashaAllah.
mashaAllah. Lay Allah shine your children paths. You must be a proud Muslim mummy.
Bless you all
thank you for this beautiful piece! Very inspiring, mA. I wrote a piece called “Planting the Seeds of Prayer in Our Young Ones” for SeekersHub. You can find it online; I pray it benefits, iA.
Thank you for sharing Hina. Will definitely check it out. 🙂
Such a nice tip MA n u r right kids follow your example rather than your advice my 18 month old whenever sees me praying start doin the same actions n he really loves doing it May Allah guide our kids to the right path ameen
Aawrwb sis, it’s not allowed for a minor ie someone who is not past the age of puberty to lead the salah for adults. one of the conditions of an imam is that he must be a man ie past puberty. He can lead other children but not adults. Please double check with a scholar. Very good other useful tips in the article. Jzk.
Assalam alikum Sister,
Yes, I know that it is not allowed for minors to lead a prayer. I should add this as a note in the post. Thank you for the reminder, sister.
This post is just a personal experience. It was how we started our child on the path to prayer to establish his habit. My husband always prayed his own
Prayer even behind the child. Majority of the times, he wasn’t even available to pray behind him as he was at the Mosque but my little boy would still lead the prayer for his little stuffed toys (and later on for his baby sisters). This post is not intended to introduce any new innovations or rituals… it is only as an idea on how we can help them have a love for prayer.
The experience of this family shows how they inspired their child. In many masjids you will find young children leading the Taraweeh. Just because the memorize the Quran. We adults pray behind them.
A child can lead the prayer as imam provided that he learned (qualified) all that requirements of imam.
My child is now turned 20 and though they both pray, it
takes ages & they leave it to the last minute.
As younger children they used to rush to pray
I don’t know what to do
It is very difficult as they grow older, I agree. There is no one way and reason why they neglect. Our only choice is to be as kind as we can. 🙁
Have you read this post: http://jeddahmom.com/2016/05/10-ways-send-boy-mosque-for-prayer/
I created a printable chart a few months ago that has been working for my family. I’ll share it with you. see if it works. <3
Salaam, I love your article on salah. We have been working extremely hard to inspire children and have created the first Interactive Educational Prayer Mat for Children. Please visit http://www.mysalahmat.com
We would love to work with you?
Can you email me at jeddahmomblog(at)gmail(dot)com please?
I have 4 YO boy, He will most at the time refuse to pray. I need to change technic. Bring his to the most to perform solah. As at home he doesnt have dad figure to show example.
If you can give me some tips on how to guide my son. We are being abstain from perform salah. I will bring my son to mosque in secret.
Can you create a small area in your home dedicated to prayer? Ask your son to lead you. Teach him the words of the Adhan and Iqama (call for prayer). Show him videos of Imam leading a prayer. You can ask him to lead you or his toys behind him.
When they are 4years old, prayer is just an act of play for him. We cannot expect them to be perfect at it as they are just bigger babies themselves.Let him pray whathe can. Lead by example. I have a four year old daughter. Some days she will outright say no to even standing beside me to pray. She is just too tired to pray so I let her sit in my lap while I pray sitting. What I am saying is, don’t force it. Be gentle. e. In time they will learn that prayer is a way of life for us muslims.
We have a good news for you that now You and your children can learn Quran-e-Majeed online. We are here to teach Quran-e-Majeed which will give us the real power to understand the worldly affairs and the purpose of the creation of the universe.
Great, seems a useful trick,
I’ve been concerned about how to make our children fall in love with prayers nowadays when kids are already engaged with the smart gadgets around them!