Friday Thoughts
Nurturing Mind, Body, Soul - Developing Islam, Iman, ihsan
3-5 Sidmouth Street, Reading, Berkshire, RG1 4QX 0118 9574737
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Welcome Home!

Ahlan-wa-Sahlan

As-salamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullah.

Praise and Glory be to Allah Most High and peace and blessings upon the Chosen One, Muhammad al-Mustafa, sallalahu alaihi wa sallam, whom God sent as a Mercy to the Worlds.

The first week of the first term of the new academic year is always challenging for parents, children and teachers. With familiar faces returning and new ones joining us we would like to extend a warm welcome (or welcome back) to you all with the ancient Arabic greeting ahlan wa sahlan. Translated roughly this age-old greeting means something like: ‘May you arrive as part of the family, and tread an easy path.’ In other words: “Welcome home. You are with family now.”

 It’s easy to forget that at Deenway and Unicity College we do not see ourselves as a school in the conventional modern sense: a place where parents give up their children to strangers whose job is to teach every child the same mandated syllabus at the same time and in the same way to produce the same product at the end in poor imitation of a factory. For us, schooling is about helping our children develop the best skills and receive the best nurturing and preparation to make them capable of being in the world, and being successful in the world, but not being of the world. We wish to help all our children grow and develop in body, mind and spirit to become healthy young men and women that are a blessing to all they meet and interact with. To help understand this approach we have placed a short video by Trevor Eissler on the Deenway school website which I would strongly recommend all parents to take a look at if you have not done so already. Mr. Eissler was a parent who discovered Montessori schooling accidentally and has been a strong advocate for such schools ever since.

 As always we are constantly working to improve our children’s learning experiences. The changes we are introducing this term are also very much in that spirit: school timings have changed, parking is no longer possible in the playground, the school day has been extended slightly in order to allow us to cover more ground with pupils and we are enforcing punctuality and other rules more strictly. Being a part of the Deenway and Unicity College family is being part of a learning process that is directed at all of us—not only our children.  In other words by coming to Deenway and Unicity College, we hope you yourselves will also be open to being challenged with new experiences and insights, and that your hearts and minds will be open to learning new things yourselves. As headmaster I hope I am also open to this process and that our teachers are too. In the end this is what being part of a family is all about: helping each other share and learn and grow through difficult times and joyful times. In this journey that we make together I ask you all to remember us in your prayers (dua’s) as you remember your children and loved ones.

Wa ma tawfeeqi illa billah

Wa salaam

Munawar Karim

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