Monday, September 14, 2009


In searching for schools back home for my children, I realized a few things.

Firstly, how much I took formal islamic education back home for granted. The adage "You dont know what you've got till it's gone" could never be more true. I only realized how much I had learnt from the religious classes I had to attend since Year 1, when I compared what I knew at that age to what my children know now.
The absence of formal religious lessons in their international school had robbed them of the knowledge they could have gained if their were to be schooling back home.
I worry how they will cope when they go to school in Malaysia. Will they be ridiculed, will they be seen as 'unislamic'?
However, I realized that going to an international school has also made them more analytical, outspoken and not shy to ask questions and seek understanding, traits that I see lacking in some malay muslims. I hope that they will continue with this trait, so that they will fuly understand Islam, Allah and His infinite wisdom and become a well-rounded muslim, rather than one that just follows without understanding why. I hope that with these traits, they will be able to recognize the wrong path when they see one.

I also realized that as parents, we have also tried our best to instill islamic values in our children. We have taught them the basics, how to pray, fast and right from wrong. Is that enough though? I feel limited in my own knowledge that I am afraid I have not provided them with enough, or worse, if I had provided them with wrong information. Na'uzubillah!
However, I realized that in teaching them, I am improving myself. With every question that they pose to me, I am learning new things as well. It also made me look at the world in a different way. I now see everything around us as an opportunity to teach, to show how a real muslim should think and act and to point out the beauties of Allah.
I also now see that every single thing that I do, from brushing my child's teeth, to making them breakfast, to putting them to bed, is an ibadah, for I am raising muslims, someone who will in turn, dedicate their own lives to pleasing the Almighty. (Insya-Allah).

Masya-Allah, what a blessing children are.


  1. Dear Kak Elisa,

    Maybe they'll be a little disadvantage at first, but children are fast learners. They'll catch up in a few months, insyaallah. Give them support by hiring a personal tutoring with ustaz/ustazah at home. wallahualam...Good luck!

  2. Elisa, what a coincidence! I am feeling the same even though I am in Malaysia and I send both Dania and Nurin to KAFA.. They both are in chinese school and have tuition after school hours which cause them to ponteng KAFA. Nurin attended KAFA like once a week when she was in Year 6. Yes, they have Agama class at Puay Chai... tapi sikit sangat... I am seriously planning for a tutor after Raya..

  3. lollies likes this.

    My exact fear really. I am trying my very best to do something for them but like you said, with very limited knowledge. But Subhanallah, we parents are learners when it comes to teaching them.

  4. Anonymous3:43 PM

    Believe me, there are always pros & cons. We do our best to balance it out. Anyways, your children are still young so there are still time.

    Sesekali dtg soalan cepu emas yg mencabar tu, kena jugak mencari bahan rujukan.


  5. salam. i read this and i am brought back to my very exact fears just 3 mths ago. when i text my quite religious sister about us sending our kids to british international sch, the first thing she asked me was "ada belajar agama tak?" i never replied! i felt guilty but i have prepared myself with all the agama books i brought from home, all prepared to teach the kids myself, at home. I pray to God that my children will appreaciate what I "teach." Insyallah. but i never stop asking myself "will it be enough?" takut pun ada, but tawakkal je lah.

  6. Indeed. Syukur Alhamdulillah most of us a blessed with a child(ren). Through them we Insya-Allah have also improved or "forced" to improved in truly searching/applying "Islam is the way of life".

    I tau memang agak memeningkan for you to decide nak hantar anak-anak ke sekolah mana, sebab secanggih mana sistem sekolah tersebut, it will depends on the teachers. And then to choose the best teachers?? Memang it is almost beyond our means lah kan? Lepas tu di tambah pulak some school will check the background of the previous school. Kalau tak memenuhi criteria atau banyak sangat lacking, school tak accept. Yang paling senang (pada pendapat I lah), International School dan Sekolah Agama Gomen punya. Then, problems yang you mentioned pun timbul. MAcam going round and round without ending.

    So far, what I heard from parents that come to us searching for the right schools..kalau International School, mereka ada syllabus sendiri bukan ikut kementerian, so katalah half-way dah masuk dan nak quit you tak boleh masuk sekolah kementerian sebab syllabus tak parallel so nak fit in macam mana. Maknanya, dah decide kena stay put lah. (I might be wrong but this is what I gather so far I've been in this line)

    Kalau masuk KAFA or SRA (sekolah rendah agama), may be at first seems ketinggalan but children are fast learner like what Ina mentioned. So parents kena fill-in yang mana tertinggal dengan ambik private tutor. Ramai ustaz/ustazah from SRA tu sendiri yang willing jadi home-tutor. Sama ada ngajar ngaji atau tulis jawi atau subjek agama yang lain. I selalu nampak flyers macam ni kat SRA masa awal-awal tahun or you can contact cikgu kelas tu sendiri so she/he can suggest sesiapa yang minat nak buat.

    Worst come to worst, ajar sendiri; bukan tak boleh kalau terpaksa dan tak ada langsung pilihan nak buat macam mana but since I involved with this line, as mother yang pernah kerja di luar bidang ni, lepas masuk ngajar ke sekolah macam ni, we mothers tak akan ter-buat kalau pun kita ada semua ilmu tu..tapi kalau assisting yang ustaz/ustazah dan ajar tu boleh lah. Semua yang major-major kita nak buat, I personally think that it is not the best choice. We are talking about:

    Jawi dan Khat
    Bahasa Arab
    Bacaan Al-Quran

    Bila dah go through all these syllabus baru I tahu it won't be easy.

    I doa semoga Allah mempermudahkan urusan kita semua dalam hal-hal pendidikan anak-anak terutama pendidikan ilmu akhirat ni sebab ini akan menjadikan ibaratnya sepohon pokok sebagai akar tunjang yang kuat bila pokok tu dah besar nanti, insyaAllah.