Anyway, I thought I might use this blog as a place to record our journey as most of the Quran hifdh stories I've come across mention their schedules once it’s been fine tuned and they are already in the full swing of things. But I've always been curious to know what process they go through to get to the "memorise a page in twenty minutes" stage. From all who I've spoken to and what I've read the three essentials is dua, persistence and consistency...and then it just get easier with time.
The method we are using to memorise is an ayah by ayah method (or line by line if the ayah is longer than a line). So we recite an ayah twenty times by looking, then ten more times alternating with looking and not looking. Then I test U on the ayah five times. If he can do it on the fifth time he continues to the next ayah and so on. At the end of the three lines, he reads all three lines twenty times, then ten times alternating looking and not looking then I test him on the whole three lines five times.
That's what we did in the morning split into two hour-long lessons. He had a break in the middle which ran on longer than expected (an hour and a half) and when he sat down again it took him a long time to focus and he got quite emotional as he was finding that he couldn't remember even after the twenty times. We both agreed that we would keep the break shorter and indoors to see if it helped keep his concentration better. I tested him again later in the afternoon on the way to A and U’s swimming lessons. He said he had forgotten it all. Now normally I might have flown off the handle a little bit with that remark…not because he forgot it but I always tell the kids that I never want to hear them say ‘I can’t’ but ‘I’ll try’, but having memorised three lines myself in the morning, I tried reciting my ayahs and actually at first I felt ‘Oh my gosh I can’t even remember the first word!’. It took a while to recall them and even then I got stuck halfway through. So instead of making a huge deal about his attitude, I just recited him his ayahs a few times and he recited with me. After the swimming lesson on the way back he still couldn't recite it independently. So in the evening I got him to sit down and read his three lines a few times, to test himself then I listened to him. However I fear it will all be gone tomorrow and he will be demotivated and that's something which I have felt myself. But I have to remind myself and him that with dua, persistency and consistency it will get easier inshallah. It’s not the amount that we can recall which is important for us right now but that we get in the habit of doing this daily and that week by week we improve.
This week as we are new to memorising three whole lines at a time and its taking a lot more time than I imagined and its actually quite tiring, I have decided not to get U to revise his other surahs. I will also probably not ask him to do any ‘school work’ but in honest truth he will probably get a lot of things done anyway as he loves reading and is very very curious.
I’m still trying to work out how to fit in revision of old surahs into our routine. Also tomorrow we are meeting some other kids in the park so I’m wondering how to work our hifdh around the times we have to go out for most of the mornings or the day. U wakes up really early so the simple solution would be for me to wake up with him and we would start earlier than our usual . But I’m so tired in the mornings as baby N is still nursing and keeps me up at night. But I think it’s the only way not to miss a day of hifdh as I really feel that daily lessons is key to keeping up the momentum.
Last thing to mention about today is that we started watching the series “Traveller with the Qur'an”. We watched it as a family and it was so timely that we started watching it today because mashallah it was a brilliant motivating way to end the day. I really recommend everyone to watch it!