Ruqaiya Asad hopes to spread the word that Islam is a religion of peace and she’s started with the children.

Asad and her staff at the Aleem Academy, an Islamic private school in Sykesville, recently finished teaching a peace-themed week.

Among other activities, the children created peace T-shirts, planted an indoor peace garden – and learned about peace in Islam.

“Islam does not permit people to attack without any reason,” teacher Shahina Bashir told her third-, fourth- and fifth-grade students during religious studies.

God is assalam, she said, or the source of peace.

In the preschool class, taking place in another section of the one-roomed school, children planted flowers and learned about behaving peacefully in their own lives.

“No fighting,” said 4-year-old Hashir Ahmad. “There’s no kicking.”

Outside of religion class, the older children studied the United Nations.

“How can we learn to live together peacefully?” asked teacher Irum Zia.


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