Hussein, the narrator of My Name Was Hussein, lives in Bulgaria. His Muslim family takes great pride in their religion and traditions. But soldiers soon arrive in their village and force all of the Muslims to adopt Christian names, thereby inhibiting their freedom and identities.
Each year at this time, teachers are faced with a dilemma: How to balance the holidays to create the most inclusive environment? As Hanukkah comes to a close and Christmas approaches, many teachers will decorate with candy canes, glittered Christmas trees and construction-papered dreidels. But there are more holidays being celebrated this month.
In recent weeks, our country has been treated to an ugly reflection of itself. The controversy over the Islamic community center in New York City has been followed by a spate of anti-Muslim acts. They include the stabbing of a Muslim cabbie, attempted arson at a mosque in Tennessee and teens harassing Muslims at worship in upstate New York.
The month of Ramadan comes upon my classroom slowly. The non-Muslim students don’t notice the changes at first, but soon the little things start creeping in. They see that the classes are smaller, because more students are staying home. Or they might notice that the Muslim students are a little more tired than usual, or that when offered food, they politely put up their hand and say, “No food for me, I am fasting.” This is when the questions start.
Longest river The Nile River of Africa is 4,160 miles, or 6656 km, long -- the longest river in the world. Its waters drain 1/10 of the area of Africa, including parts of present day Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda and Rw