Keffiyeh Paper Topper {Tutorial} plus Farah Rocks Fifth Grade {Review}

We made these keffiyeh paper toppers after we recently received the book Farah Rocks Fifth Grade by Susan Muaddi Darraj from the publisher Capstone to review for Multicultural Children’s Book Day.

This book is the start of a series that will be about a Palestinian girl named Farah Hajjar, who will be starting a different school the following year as she enters sixth grade. She hopes to enter a new academy with her best friend, but she starts to think twice about leaving her special needs younger brother behind on his own, in their old school. A bully situation has come up and without giving too much away, Farah, who had only one goal: to get into the academy, starts to have bad grades. On purpose!

What I loved most about this book is that Farah and her family are Christian, and she discusses her family commissioning a stained glass window in their church in Chapter 1. It is such a big misconception that all Arabs are Muslim, when more Arab Americans celebrate Christmas than celebrate Eid. I am happy to finally see that the publishing industry is shining some lights on books from the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region that are not Muslim focused.

My daughter wanted to share the book with some friends, who always had questions about her faith. She wanted to show them that there were different types of Arabs, just like there were different types of Americans. I suggested we share the link with their mothers so that they could buy it also and we could host a book club at our home. She loved the idea and made sure to invite friends from all three major faiths, Christians, Jewish, and Islam, to join us.

To celebrate the unity of religions in Palestine, we decided to make straw toppers for our book club drinks. We hoped they would be a great start to our conversation.

To make them, we went back to a map of Palestine from 1917, before it was divided up by the British. Diversity was celebrated and there were a number of factories that made keffiyeahs, the traditional head scarf worn in the MENA region. Now, outside of China, there is only one factory making this headscarf in Palestine.

Traditionally thought of as only black & white, keffiyeahs actually come in many colors.

To get started on our paper toppers, we printed ours at about 3 inches.

We colored in the Palestine country outline first. This way, we do not have to worry about staying in the lines, as we’ll be cutting it out anyway.

After cutting out the country outlines, the final step is to tape the back of the colored map to the straw.

We made a few of them in different colors, just like the ones above.

This also will help keep everyone’s drinks apart.

Now our paper toppers are ready for our Farah Rocks Fifth Grade book club.

If you enjoyed this craft tutorial, please visit these others that educate about Palestine

Palestine Landscape Notebook {Tutorial}

Palestine

2019 Ramadan Crafts 30 Day Challenge Roundup {Resource}

Shukran (Arabic for thank you) to everyone that followed our Ramadan crafts 30 day daily challenge of creating an activity that teaches about Arab culture or the Muslim world.

My family would like to wish our blog reading community an Eid Mubarak.

Eid Al Fitr is today, the holiday that comes at the end of Ramadan and Eid Mubarak is a greeting that means Blessed Eid.

We started our 30 day Ramadan crafts challenge back in July 2011. Our tradition has continued annually through 2012, 2013, 2014. 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018.

Here are the 2019 Ramadan crafts daily challenge posts

Ramadan Day 1 Ramadan Perler Mosque {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 2 Ramadan Ice Cream Calendar {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 3 Lantern Love Decor {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 4 Arabesque Paint Chip Coasters {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 5 Teabag Folding Khatam Card {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 6 Protective Nazar Rocks {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 7 Ramadan Circle Wall Decor {Tutorial} Guest Post

Ramadan Day 8 Ramadan Indian Food Word Search {Printable} plus Let’s Celebrate Ramadan & Eid {Book Review}

Ramadan Day 9 Ramadan Moon and Star Bird Feeder {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 10 Nakba Shrinky Dink Key Chain {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 11 Moon and Star Bookmarks Card {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 12 Gallery Glass Zakat Minaret {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 13 Libya Collage Pin {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 14 Color Shift Glitterific Mosque Decor {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 15 Khatam Atom Caution Sign {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 16 Ramadan Popsicle Suncatcher {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 17 Moroccan Harira Soup {Recipe}

Ramadan Day 18 Eid Aperture Card {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 19 Bismillah Round Placemat {Tutorial} Guest Post

Ramadan Day 20 Ramadan Word Scramble {Printable}

Ramadan Day 21 Eid Sequence Paper Plate {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 22 Allah Gallery Glass Suncatcher {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 23 Arabesque Felt Tea Coaster {Tutorial} Guest Post

Ramadan Day 24 6 Kid Approved Stuffed Dates {Recipe}

Ramadan Day 25 Eid Gallery Glass Cheese Tray {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 26 Recycled Oui Tea Lights {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 27 Chocolate Moon and Star Krispie Treats {Recipe}

Ramadan Day 28 Arab Women Cartoon Book {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 29 Recycled Minaret Money Favor {Tutorial}

Ramadan Day 30 Recycled Cardboard Oud {Tutorial}

Stop by A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more tutorials that teach about Muslim culture and the Arab world.

Recycled Cardboard Oud {Tutorial}

My husband made play ouds as part of our Ramadan crafts, out of recycled cardboard because I was only able to bring one oud for our 3 girls from Morocco.

The oud (Arabic: عود‎) is a short-neck pear-shaped stringed instrument with 11 or 13 strings grouped in 5 or 6 courses. It is used predominantly in Western Asia/North Africa and very similar to modern lutes.

I walked by an oud stand at the Rabat souk, every day on my way to teach art and English at a local school. Honestly, I wanted to buy a large oud, but had no way to bring it on the airplane.

I settled on a smaller decorative oud, but when I got home, I could only give it to one of my daughters to hang in her room.

My husband went online and found instructions one how to make a cardboard play guitar and adjusted them for the oud. He made two of them, with different colored “strings” or rubber bands. He then presented them to our other daughters as Eid gifts today. My youngest daughter, who had received the decorative oud, helped him with the hot glue gun since he had never used one before.

Below are the steps he took to make these cardboard play ouds, in case you’d like to try your own.

Supplies

  • Large rubber bands
  • Pencil
  • Drill & bit that is the same size as the rubber bands
  • Two small dowels
  • Two paper clips
  • Hot glue gun
  • Recycled cardboard
  • Glass (or other small round object for center hole)
  • Decorative oud to trace

To make his cardboard oud, my husband started by tracing out the miniature oud on the cardboard and cutting out three shapes. Also make sure to cut out the circles in the center. My husband used a drinking glass from the kitchen to trace out small circle hole.

To make the back of the oud round, he also cut out four more shapes, without the neck, in descending sizes.

My daughter used the hot glue gun to attach two of the larger pieces together and then she set them aside to cool.

So that the bridge is not too high on the cardboard, my husband used the Xacto to cut out a notch the length of the red dowel. Directly below that cut, he made markings for the “stings” to go through.

He made sure to do the same thing to hold the bridge at the neck of the cardboard oud.

Next my daughter used the hot glue gun to attach the two red dowels. She pushed them each gently into the cut out notches, but not too far. Her father then used the drill to make four small holes that are big enough to fit the rubber bands.

Since the rubber bands will be pulling on the oud neck, my husband used the xacto to create four notches for them to fit into. This will help the “strings” stay in place.

Next we used the tip of the pencil to push the end of the rubber bands into the holes.

Once the rubber bands were through, we used a paper clip to secure them to the back side.

We used the hot glue on to hold down the paper clip, trying to be careful not to get any on the rubber bands since they could melt. We also added the other larger cardobard layers of the oud to hide the paper clips.

Make sure to hold down the cardboard while gluing to help give the oud more durablity while being handled by children.

Once the glue had dried, my husband turned the oud over to hot glue the smaller pieces to give the back a domed look.

Our play oud was done and ready to be enjoyed. Maybe we’ll make a few more and paint them this time.

Be sure to check out these other fun toys we have made in the past.

Recycled Cardboard Mosque {Tutorial}

Eid Rattle Drum {Tutorial}

Stop by A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more tutorials