Many of the district's Arabic-speaking families practice Islam. April 12th marks the beginning of Ramadan, a month-long holiday celebrated by Muslims (those who practice Islam). Your Muslim students and their families may be fasting from pre-dawn to sunset for the next 30 days to focus on personal growth and reflection.
What does this mean for you as a teacher? Your Muslim students may be going to bed after 11:00 pm and getting up by 5:00 am. Some may go back to sleep while others will stay awake. Students may be tired, hungry, and thirsty during the day, and this may be reflected their effort, concentration, and performance. Keep in mind that not all Muslims may partake in these practices. Typically, those not participating include children under twelve years old, the ill, and the elderly.
What can you do as a teacher? Consider extending deadlines to 11:59 pm and continue to allow extended time and/or flexibility to submit assignments. Be mindful of assignments where students log or write about what they eat or drink throughout the day. If a student is fasting, allow him or her to go to a different room during lunchtime and to save treats or snacks distributed during the day.
Additionally, this would be a great time to build rapport with families by reaching out to parents to ask about how you can support their children during Ramadan. Some students may want to share information with their classmates while others may not want any added attention. Please check-in with students or their parents because they will have varying needs during this time.
Resources for Educators