Arts and crafts · Uncategorized

Experiments and Explosions

Last week, at Little Man’s school, all students had to do a participate in a talent show, where they had to do a presentation about their culture and tradition. In a country like South Africa, where there are so many different tribes and traditions, so rich in cultural dance and song, the competition was going to be stiff.

Little Man initially decided to recite Surah Fatiha (the opening chapter of the Quraan) in Arabic, and then to recite the translation. A few days later, he changed his mind, thinking that most of the students wouldn’t understand him, and so, we looked for other ideas.

He suddenly remembered the article I’d written last month, about Islamic heritage, and the role muslim scholars had played in laying the foundations for modern science and medicine. He decided to do a simple vinegar and baking soda reaction, which causes the 2 chemicals to let off gas, and usually results in the liquid overflowing, and spilling all over. He then repeated the experiment but this time trapped the gas inside a balloon. Then he mixed in with lots of humour, dressed in a traditional thobe, with large laboratory goggles, and cotton wool beard stuck onto his little face. He explained the experiment and then elaborated on why he chose to do an experiment, as opposed to song and dance.

And surprisingly, he came out third in the Junior section! They were judged on creativity, relevance to heritage, uniqueness of content, and entertainment factor. I was very very proud! Even moreso, because they had to perform in front of parents, teachers and students.

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