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Jenna McWilliams
Jenna McWilliams
(Bloomington - United States)

I studied creative writing and published some poems. Then I decided to  get all up in education's grill. I'm currently a doctoral student in the Learning Sciences program at Indiana  University.
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Islam

26 - Islam

This lesson covers the basics of Islam. It includes handouts for do now, classwork, and homework.

Objectives:

1) SWBAT describe the origins of Islam, its prophet, and its holy text.

2) SWBAT compare and contrast the beliefs of Muslims with those of Jews and Christians.

This resource is part of Unit 1: Belief Systems and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Lesson 1.26 Islam

Islam in a Globalized World

The World Affairs Council was pleased to host Mohammad Fani and Lesley Hazelton as part of its Global Classroom event focusing on Islam. Mr. Fani and Ms. Hazelton used their dialogue to share actual teachings of Islam and its commonalities with Judaism and Christianity. The objective of the resource packet included here is to teach students about Islam and some of the issues that Islamic scholars are debating today such as democracy and human rights. Teachers may use the sections in the packet as building blocks to teach about Islam, Muslims around the world, democracy, and human rights. Once informed on each of those topics, students can better explore and debate important issues facing the world today such as the compatibility of democracy with Islam.

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Lesson 2.1 Muslim Empire (Layered Curriculum Day 1)

Lesson 2.2 Muslim Empire (Layered Curriculum Day 2)

Lesson 2.4 Muslim Empire (Layered Curriculum Day 4)

Lesson 2.5 Muslim Empire (Layered Curriculum Day 5)

Empire - Muslim Empire Quiz

This is a quiz to be given on Friday, after completing the layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire Layered Curriculum Rubric

This is a rubric to grade students' layered curriculum projects in the Muslim Empire unit.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Exploring Islam Through Art: Lesson Plan 2

Islam Art Students can define “religion” and “symbol.” They will be able to discuss style, colors, methods and messages in Islamic religious art. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the basic elements of Islamic art and show an understanding of basic Islamic religious concepts expressed within art.

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Empire A1 - Muslim Politics

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers Muslim politics.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire A2 - Be A Muslim Architect

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers Muslim architecture.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire B1 - Spies in the Muslim Empire

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers spies in the Muslim empire.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire B2 - Muslim Math Memory Game

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers a Muslim Math Memory Game.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire B3 - Calligraphy Art Project

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers calligraphy art.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire B4 - Creating A Muslim Calendar

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers creating a Muslim calendar.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire C1 - Origins of Sunni and Shia Muslims

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers the origins of Sunni and Shia Muslims.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Empire C2 - Map of the Muslim Empire

This is one project from a layered curriculum unit on the Muslim Empire. This project covers a map of the Muslim empire.

This resource is part of Unit 2: Empire and the Social Studies 7 course.

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Ramadan WebQuest

 

This three-part webquest relates to Ramadan's history and traditions. The third part places special attention on the fasting that is completed during Ramadan.

Ramadan WebQuest

 

This three-part webquest relates to Ramadan's history and traditions. The third part places special attention on the fasting that is completed during Ramadan.

Let's Celebrate Ramadan!

 

Educator Gayle Berthiaume's lesson plan for Ramadan includes a fund raising activity.

Navigate to This External Web Link:

AN INTRODUCTION TO THE QURAN

1.SUBJECT:  Religion > Islam > Quran

 

2. TITLE OF COURSE: An Introduction to the Quran

 

3. COURSE DESCRIPTION:

 

This is an introductory course on the scripture that guides the lives of millions of Muslims around the world. The course covers the life of Muhammad, his received revelations, the origins of Islam and the development of the Quran.   The class will read translated excerpts from the Quran, arranged by theme. We will discuss the writings from the perspective of the period in which they were written, as well as later interpretations.

 

4. COURSE MEETING TIMES: 

                        Weeks:           Twelve

                        Sessions:        One session / week

                        Hours:            1.5 hours / session

 

 

5. REQUIRED TEXT:        Readings in the Quran (Paperback) by Kenneth Cragg (Translator)

                                             Publisher: Sussex Academic Press; New Ed edition (October 1999)                                                                                             $24.95

                                             ISBN-10: 190221031X           ISBN-13: 978-1902210315

 

7. STUDY GROUP LEADER: Carol Johnson

 

Ms.  Johnson was Director of Outreach at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard for 12 years, working with educators developing curricula on the Middle East.   She has an MLS from Simmons College, and an MA in religion from the Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

 

OPTIONAL / ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

1. SYLLABUS: (including reading assignments)

 

Session 1.       VIDEO: The Messenger (the story of Muhammad)

                        Introduction to the course. Assign presentation topics.

 

Session 2.       Introductory Essay (pages 14-60)

                        Selection and translation.

 

Session 3.       Introductory Essay  (pages 61-85)

                        Contemporary concerns and the Quran.

                        VIDEO: Islam: A Pictorial Essay I; Publisher: Fons Vitae        

 

Session 4.       The Readings A & B  (pages 86-112)

                        God, man and nature.

 

Session 5.       The Readings  C  (pages 113-176)

                        Prophets and messengers through the ages.

 

Session 6.       The Readings  D  (pages 177-225)

                        The early years of Muhammad’s revelations in Mecca.

 

Session 7.       The Readings E  (pages 226-275)

                        Muhammad and the development of the Muslim community.

 

Session 8.       The Readings F  (pages 276-295)

                        Faith and religion: creed, code, cult, community, culture; admonitory description and commendation from divine will.

 

Session 9.       Readings: Michael Cook “Introduction to the Koran” (handout)

                       

Session 10.     The Readings G  (pages 296-328)

                        Society and law: personal and status law, commercial and economic activity; leaves other areas to tradition and consensus but always with criterion of non-repugnancy to Quran.

                                   

Session 11.  The Readings H  (pages 329-350)

                        The disbelievers and the Day of Judgment.

                                   

Session 12      Hadith: The words and deeds of the Prophet (handout)

                        or  Questions and Answers with a scholar of Islam.

                                               

2. READINGS: see 1. syllabus

3. ASSIGNMENTS: see 1. syllabus

4. RELATED RESOURCES:

 

            http://www.islam101.com/quran/maududi/iindex.

            Chapter introductions of the Quran by Syed Abul-Ala' Maududi

 

            htmhttp://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/

            Excellent site for information on Islam and text of the Quran, administered by University of Southern California.

 

            http://www.geocities.com/masad02/

            Translation of Holy Quran, Translated and Explained by M Asad.

 

Sharia Law

Overview
In the past few years several key cases, including the 2003 case of a Nigerian woman convicted of adultery and sentenced to death by stoning, sparked interest in and criticism of Sharia, or Islamic law. In this lesson, your high school students will examine Sharia in the context of cultural and religious beliefs in Muslim societies and worldwide.

Procedure
1. Background
Provide your students with some background information on Nigeria and Sharia, as well as the 2003 case of Amina Lawal. You may also wish to have your students read Oil and Politics in Nigeria: Sharia Law. http://www.pbs.org/newshour/indepth_coverage/africa/nigeria/sharia.html

Nigeria is Africa's most populous nation - one-fifth of all Africans are Nigerian - and a leading African nation. Nigeria is also the world's sixth largest oil producer, although the majority of Nigerians remain poor. This disparity has been the cause of recent deadly clashes.

For most of the 40 years since Nigeria gained independence from Britain, the country has been ruled by its military. In the summer of 1998 military leaders agreed to an election. In 1999, General Olusegun Obasanjo won the presidential election. In 2003, he was reelected in the first civilian-run election in Nigeria in over 20 years. In 2007, Obasanjo reached his constitutional term limit and will pass the presidency on to the next elected leader.

Muslims account for one-fifth of the world's population. Half of all Nigerians are Muslims and thus Nigeria has the largest concentration of Muslims in Africa. Sharia, the Muslim code for living, was practiced in Nigeria for centuries until the arrival of the British in the early 1900s. In 2000, Muslim-Christian violence was sparked by the reintroduction of Sharia in several Northern states. Although Nigerian Christians (40 percent of the total population) are not subject to Sharia, clashes between Christians and Muslims in recent years have left thousands dead.

Sharia varies widely in how it is implemented in Muslim societies. As criminal law, it is in practice in only a few predominantly Muslim countries such as Iran, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia. In Nigeria, its use in criminal cases is considered by some to be a violation of the constitution.

Amina Lawal, a 31 year old divorced Nigerian woman, was sentenced in March 2002 by a Sharia court to death by stoning for committing adultery. The case became a high profile one and a test of the reintroduction of Sharia in 12 predominantly Muslim states in northern Nigeria. She appealed and on September 25 the court ruled to overturn her conviction.

Other significant examples of Sharia law's implementation are the Abdul Rahman case in Afghanistan and the Mirza Tahir Hussain case in Pakistan.

Afghan Abdul Rahman was arrested in February 2006 for converting to Christianity. Formerly a Muslim, Rahman was charged with rejecting Islam but his case was dismissed in March of 2006, after human rights groups and international organizations protested, supposedly because of problems with the prosecutors' evidence. He could have faced the death penalty if convicted.

Mirza Tahir Hussain, a citizen of Great Britain, was convicted in 1989 of murdering a taxi driver in Pakistan, but was cleared in 1996 by a secular court. He was then retried and found guilty in an Islamic one, the Federal Sharia Court, and was sentenced to death. He spent a total of 18 years on death row and was released on November 17, 2006 after international outcry and a plea for clemency by Prince Charles.

2. Article Analysis
Have your students read and discuss the following NewsHour Extra story on Lawal's case [Nigerian Court Frees Woman Sentenced Under Sharia Law]. Use the following questions to spark discussion.

  • What surprised you about this case and its outcome?
  • What do you think about the charges against Amina Lawal and the outcome of her case?
  • Why might people in the predominantly Muslim northern states of Nigeria wish to be governed by Sharia?
3. Key Terms
Provide your students with the following EXCERPTS from Frontline interviews with Akbar Muhammad and Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf and the HANDOUT (a TEACHER KEY is also provided) of key terms. Ask them to identify the terms by reading the interviews. Students may also use their NewsHour Extra articles and the case of Amina Lawal and "Sharia in Nigeria" backgrounder as well as any other sources on Islam you have available. When students have finished, discuss the terms and their importance. Next, ask students to consider the harsh punishments that can be given out according to Sharia (such as cutting off the hand of a thief) and ask them to respond analytically to the following quotes from the interviews.

  • "You cannot judge a whole body of law by one instance of criminal law."
4. Compare/contrast
Have your students select one of the following issues to consider and write about for homework. Students then meet in small groups of students who selected the same topics to discuss and share their responses. Students may then add final reflections on their papers and turn them in to you.

Extension Activities
You may extend this assignment by asking your students to do additional research prior to writing their responses or after meeting in small groups for discussion. What other examples from legal systems worldwide can they find to bolster their arguments? For example, you may wish to have your students look more closely at variations in the interpretation and implementation of U.S. law and Sharia as well as other systems of law that value communal order over individual freedoms (e.g. Hong Kong).

  1. Legal Interpretation
Legal systems or codes, such as the U.S. Constitution and Sharia law, often vary widely in how they are interpreted and implemented. This makes it difficult to draw conclusions about legal systems from just the written codes themselves or from how they are implemented in one place. One must know more about how the systems are used and interpreted. Consider:

What can you conclude about Sharia and how it compares to the system of law you may be most familiar with, the American system, in terms of flexibility, interpretation, and implementation? How should moral and legal codes be interpreted?

b. Severe Penalties
Many legal systems allow for severe penalties such as death, bodily injury, or life in prison. Sharia contains the penalties of amputation for theft, flogging for crimes such as alcohol consumption and sex before marriage, and death by stoning for adultery. Officials in Northern Nigeria support the use of harsh Sharia punishments, even while President Obasanjo has called the punishments discriminatory and therefore unconstitutional. Compare and contrast what you know about the most severe penalties allowable under Sharia and the most severe penalty allowed under U.S. Law, the death penalty. Consider:

    • In the United States, 38 states allow the death penalty for crimes such as murder and treason.
    • Approximately two-thirds of Americans support use of the death penalty.

What can you conclude? What do you think should be allowable forms of punishment for the most severe crimes? Why? Are harsh punishments, such as amputations and death ever justified? Explain. Who should determine what the most serious crimes are and how frequently the most severe punishments should be used?

c. Security vs. Freedom
Experts on Nigeria and Islamic law claim that Nigerian Muslims have supported the reintroduction of Sharia out of a desire for order, safety, and security. Compare this to what many Americans felt after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and the swift passage of the USA Patriot Act to combat terrorism. Consider:

What can you conclude about the circumstances under which people favor security and safety over freedom? When should individual freedoms (including freedom from harsh punishments as well as intrusions into one's privacy) be protected, regardless of the costs to society?
 

NCSS Thematic Strands:

  • Culture
  • Individuals, Groups, and Institutions
  • Power, Authority, and Governance
  • Global Connections
  • Civic Ideals and Practices