Hassan and Hussein are twin brothers who are habitually challenged to solve a riddle by their cousin and in this story we accompany them on a fun quest to succeed in solving one. Insha’Allah the book is the first in a series and I am already looking forward to the next instalment.
Although this book is targeted at young readers aged six to nine (as the characters are about eight years old and there is a crossword at the back) the story is accessible to younger listeners too and my four and six year old non-readers have thoroughly enjoyed having the story read to them.
The story is from the viewpoint of one of the twins which makes it immediately engaging. It also means that the Islamic lessons communicated to readers through other characters are interesting, short within dialogue or observation, and non-preachy masha’Allah. My favourite character is Uncle Ali who only makes a brief appearance – but I do hope to see him in successive stories insha’Allah.
Below is a craft activity inspired by Uncle Ali.
Awesome T Shirts
An Activity for Children Ages 4+
Be inspired by Uncle Ali in Hassan and Hussein: The Riddle on 22 Lane and decorate your own awesome T-shirt.
You Will Need:
Pale coloured T-shirt or other pale cotton garment
Iron and ironing surface
Here’s What To Do:
- Draft your design on paper first (younger children will probably want to skip this step). Select crayons/pastels that are similar in colour to your fabric pastels and draft your design on paper. Are you going to write something like Uncle Ali’s ‘Smile Today It’s a Sunnah!’ or make a pattern, or both?
- Spread your garment on a flat surface and use fabric pastels to apply your design.
- Ask an adult to supervise and help you with this step. Set the iron to its hottest setting. Spread your garment on an ironing board/surface and cover your design with paper. Iron over your design several times – this will make your design permanent. Iron the rest of the garment without paper on the iron’s cotton setting.
- Wear your garment!
Spread your garment onto a pin board and pin it into place so that it does not crease as you draw on it.
When applying your pastels you can reduce smudges if you turn your work so that you draw on the nearest part of the cloth.
Choose colours that match clothes you want to wear with your awesome T-shirt.
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