we’re studying the development of language,
and as an extension made paper like the Chinese first did.
(the Egyptians were the first to make paper,
but they used a layering technique with papyrus
while the Chinese used pulp from cloth.)
we used two Ikea frames:
one became our mold,
the other — doctored up with screening and duct tape —
was our deckle.
next we tore up colored paper scraps from our recycling bin.
we put our scraps in the blender with warm water and then…
we flipped the mold over onto felt and newspaper (to soak up surplus water) and…
the pink flecks in the blue paper above are flower petals that were added in the pulp
between blending and pouring.
every month we focus on a value or character trait
that we want to nourish within ourselves and as a family.
this month it is trustworthiness or amanah in Arabic.
in addition to reading stories on this theme from the library,
i also work with character building day by day, by anne d. mather & louise b. weldon,
as well as islamic values for children by lila assiff-tarabin
and a to z of akhlaaaq: moral values for children by nafees khan.
The Farm is an excellent example of urban agriculture
— it sticks out like (pardon the pun) a green thumb
on the corner of New Jersey and K Streets in NW DC —
— it serves the kids, families and neighbors of Walker Jones Education Campus —
and volunteerism at its best.
we plan to join Green Muslims when they volunteer
on the last Sunday of every month, inshaAllah.
join them then or contact Sarah Bernardi
(sarah at wjfarm dot org or 202.320.4996)
to find out when you can help individually or as a group.
promote sustainable urban agriculture by volunteering
or buying fresh-picked food at uncommonly low prices from The Farm’s stand;
get back in touch with the Earth that,
by the will of Our Creator,
provides us with sustenance;
help our children remember where our food comes from before the grocery stores.
even though i read Roots, the book, and saw Roots, the TV series,
i needed to be reminded that Annapolis, Maryland
is the actual location that Kunta Kinte
— one of 98 enslaved people brought to Annapolis,
aboard the ship Lord Ligonier in 1767 —
arrived to America.
the sight of the colonial buildings at the fish-scented dock
created a moving backdrop to the African rhythms that reverberated around the harbor.
besides the numerous booths, food vendors and musical entertainment
the festival had a children’s booth that kept hands and minds active:
dress up in various African-print cloths,
making medallions with your name in Arabic,
printing with adinkra stamps,
and making west African instruments with recycled materials.
“Kunte Kinte’s experience symbolizes the struggle of all ethnic groups
to preserve their cultural identity”,
and the Kunte Kinte Heritage Festival
— a yearly event —
highlights the contributions of African Americans
and the strength of African traditions in the US.