Muslim Early Years Book List

Below is a list of books for young Muslim children that I have used with my own family and with children at a toddler group I have volunteered for, aged 0-4.

I have categorised the list into age guidelines for when to introduce the books. However every child is different and these guidelines are based upon a medium between my family’s experiences, those of my friends, and those of participants at a toddler group.

I hope the list is useful for choosing Ramadan/’Eid gifts for the young Muslims you know insha’Allah.

Baby’s First Year 0-1

Allah Makes Early Reading Set (10 Board Books, Game Puzzle, Tokens, 6 Sided Die)

This series introduces and reaffirms Allah as the Maker of everything. These board books are ideal for little hands to (attempt to) clutch and turn the pages. They have bright illustrations and short text. (You can save the game and reuse the books after a few years when your child is an early reader so this set could be a very wise investment.)

Islamic Nursery Rhymes

Singing rhymes to children from birth (and even from seven months old in the womb) is soothing for babies. Facilitating children to access nursery rhymes gives children a great start in developing the pre-literacy skills like recognising the sounds of rhymes, predicting words, and remembering text. There are a few Muslim nursery rhymes collections to choose from but I am, of course, biased towards my own! You can also find my rhymes on YouTube to learn the tunes if needed.

My Arabic Alphabet Book

(Careful with the sharp corners!)

From around six months old babies often begin their journeys towards speaking by making sounds. Using this book you can ensure the sounds of the Qur’an are directly related to your child and regularly included in their soundscape.

AGE 0-1 GAPS

I think we need Muslim:

-Black and white newborn baby books

-Baby board books that celebrate love within the family that include plenty of repetition, rhyme and alliteration

-(More) fabric baby books/fabric crinkle newspapers

What gaps can you identify? Perhaps you could fill the gap?

Baby Turns Toddler 1-2

I Can Set (5 Books)

The curved shapes of these board books make them very endearing; their shape also encourages little Muslims to turn pages at the top and to experience ease in doing so (rather than turning by the page bottom which rips easily on non-board-books so top-turning is a good habit masha’Allah). The books rhyme and are strong on repetition, inviting you to read them over and over at every sitting. They nurture a positive Muslim identity and provide great talking points about practising Islam – parents can easily use the illustrations in the books to refer to people, places and practises that are personal to the child’s world (dialogic reading).

Thank You Allah Counting Book

This is a rhythmic, rhyming board book which focusses upon a child spying things to thank Allah for. As well as supporting a daily rhythm of counting blessings, the book is great to facilitate turn-taking when pointing to the objects and counting them, and to open discussions about things we thank Allah for.

Muslim Nursery Rhymes

The version I’ve used of this book does not include a CD so I am very curious to hear it insha’Allah. Masha’Allah I have used some of these rhymes within interactive stories and as part of rhyme sessions.

AGE 1-2 GAPS

I think we need Muslim:

-Board books about characters exploring, enjoying and making sense of Allah’s world

-Nursery rhymes board books

What gaps can you identify? Perhaps you could fill the gap?

Toddler 2-3

One

This is a very attractive board board that uses the repetition of one beautifully, and concludes with the Oneness of Allah and the need to do good in His sight.

The Jolly Jamat

This is a fun rhyming book that celebrates – and counts – people from different houses on their way to make salah together in a park.

Time for Isha’a

This is an engaging counting book that follows a father’s journey to the masjid to make Isha’a salah.

My Arabic Number Book

(Careful with the sharp corners!)

Many toddlers enjoy using their fingers to point out the objects they can name and to count things. With this book you can familiarise children with the sound of counting in Arabic.

Made By Allah Alphabet Book

This book can be used at this age to introduce and consolidate vocabulary and have fun tracing over letter shapes within a framework of celebrating/recognising Allah as our Creator.

Prayer Times Book of Colours

Copying salah and commenting on colours are often favourite pastimes of two year olds and this book makes for a lovely post-salah activity that includes them both.

Allah Gave Me Two Eyes To See

Toddlers who have just learned to name the parts of their bodies that are related to their ‘five senses’ will likely enjoy this book and it has a lovely ending for parents to introduce the notion of love in our hearts – for Allah.

Polar Shape Bear

This book is especially good fun for families who like to include memorable songs within fantastical stories. It plays with the shapes: square, triangle and circle.

Under the Ramadan Moon

This book gives a joyful picture of Ramadan and the activities depicted are inspiring and delightful. The repetition of ‘we’ in this book transmits a warm feeling of community.

AGE 2-3 GAPS

I think we need Muslim:

-Very short story picture books for newly skilled page turners to be able to take the lead

-Beautifully illustrated books of a single nursery rhyme for accomplished page turners to enjoy

-Lift-the-flap books

What gaps can you identify? Perhaps you could fill the gap?

Young Muslim Aged 3-4

No More Monsters

This book introduces Ayat ul Kursi within the framework of a mother calming her son at bedtime. The rhythm and rhyme are calming making this ideal bedtime reading.

Amira’s Totally Chocolate World

This is a fun and thought-provoking story about appreciating Allah’s world which is especially poignant to read in the weeks preceding ‘Eid.

The Perfect Gift

This is a charming story about finding an ‘Eid gift within nature.

My Mummy’s Tummy

This book is especially useful when a child is preparing to become an older sibling or is new to the role but it is a good story for exploring family, acceptance and patience for any child.

The Beauty of My Hijab

This book is a beautiful and feminine exploration of wearing hijab, using similes and repetition.

The Way To Jannah

This lift-the-flap book shares numerous du’as framed within a question and answer session between a mother and son. This session is portrayed as happening while striving to climb a mountain which provides an engaging story-feel for youngsters and is an appealing analogy about striving in life for the parents who are likely to read this book (many) several times over.

Stories of the Prophets Multipack (5 Books)

These rhyming books introduce stories in ways that invite a lot of questions from children that parents need to answer. This can be a strength as it encourages a relationship between you and your child in which your child turns to you for more knowledge than her/his books provide. The illustrations are very endearing … you may find yourself wanting the puzzle to match.

A Trust of Treasures

This book has a poetic and rich style for celebrating the treasures of the earth and the importance of caring for them.

Ramadan Moon

This book focusses on the thoughts of a child about Ramadan and ‘Eid and it therefore appeals very much to children. Its poetic style is pleasant and its illustrations are intricate alhamdulillah.

AGE 3-4 GAPS

I think we need Muslim:

-Stories which invite audience participation, for example making animal sounds or saying a repeated chorus

-Stories about adventures outdoors

-Beautiful books of single du’as/short surahs for young Muslims to take respectful ownership of and actively participate in at bedtime

What gaps can you identify? Perhaps you could fill the gap?

Looking Ahead to Books For Muslim Children Aged 4-6+

Insha’Allah I am planning to consider using books from these Muslim publishers:

Creative Education and Publishing

Goodword Books

Noorart

Noor Kids

Saba Islamic Media

Taha Publishing

As well as to continue using books from these publishers insha’Allah:

Greenbird Books

Kube Publishing

Learning Roots

Mindworks Publishing

Smart Ark

Stonefaruq

The Islamic Foundation

And to continue using audios from this publisher insha’Allah:

Miraj Audio

If I have missed any Muslim publishers please forgive me and do please let me know.

Alhamdulillah, there are lots of books from several publishers to choose from.

Bismillah. Which book(s) will you choose?

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