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Tuesday 11 October 2016

Muslim Princess Books - An Alternative For Muslim Readers

There's something about princesses that appeals to most little girls. Is it the pretty dresses that they get to wear or the ability to command people and get what they want? Whatever it is, year after year, a new crop of prekinders would sing the Frozen song 'Let it Go' or come to classes dressed in a princess costume. 

Two Ana on the same day

Snow White
 There were even Cinderella, Sofia, Sleeping Beauty, and just girls in their own pretty 'princess' dresses.
A little one in her own princess dress
If you listen in on their conversations you'll hear them talking about their favourite princess character and even fighting over her. One such conversation went like this:

Princess Wannabe 1: (singing) Let it go, let it go!
Princess Wannabe 2: No you can't sing that! Elsa is mine.She's my favourite.
PW1: But I can sing it if I want. She's my favourite!
PW2: Well you can't because she's my favourite first.
PW1: But she's my favourite first too.
PW2: No she's not. She's mine.
PW1: (Pauses and thinks) She can be both our favourite!
PW2: Yeah!
Me: (Cry laughing silently) :'D

If on a particular day there was a pile of princesses books on the shelf then they were the ones gone first (and they would be the ones that are dog-eared and creased the most).
Little girl on the left reading Snow White
Reading Cinderella
With so much obsession with princesses going on, wouldn't it be better to have a Muslim princess for our children to love and imitate? 

Well there are a set of Muslim princesses books available. When these books first came out, I bought them all. My prekinders LOVE them.

What I like about them is that each book, and therefore each princess, has a good Islamic character trait for children to emulate. Each princess is based on a name of Allah such as Princess Haleema from Al-Haleem, the Forebearing. The story would be about the princess overcoming some trial by using her character trait.

The downside is that these books are aimed at children a bit older such as Kindy and up. It's the wording in the books that is sometimes difficult for young children to understand. I would have to paraphrase when that happened.

Nevertheless, children still love looking at the pictures while I retell. They also love to look at the pictures as they retell the story themselves.

This little girl was 'reading' the book by looking at the pictures and telling a story based on them.
In general, children love reading these books (yes boys as well). It's a shame then that there aren't any of these Muslim princesses costumes available for children to dress up in. For if they were, I'm sure I would be seeing Muslim princesses in my classes.

Is it time you switch over from the Disney Pricesses to the Muslim Princesses and teach your children to value a fine personality rather than physical looks? If so then try to find these books at your local Islamic bookstore. If they don't stock them then try Amazon (my affiliate link):

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