By Rashad Mulla
Muslim Link Staff Writer
At first glance, Numair Ahmed looks like your typical nine-year-old. He is a very active child who loves his video games and sports, especially basketball. He possesses the carefree attitude that is common among most kids his age. There is little indication that Numair has completed a monumental task. That is because it takes more than a simple glance to find out a most extraordinary thing about him. At the young age of eight, Numair completed the memorization of the Quran.
He started attending the full-time Hifz school at the Islamic Society of Baltimore (ISB) in September of 2003, and completed in March of 2005, a time span of less than two years. He had attended the part-time Hifz program before attending full-time, and he had been memorizing well even then. According to his father, Safi Ahmed, he had completed over 30 Surahs by that time. His teacher at the time, who is also his current teacher, suggested to Numair’s parents that he (Numair) attend the full-time Hifz program. That decision proved to be an excellent one.
Now at the age of nine, Numair revises his Quran daily in the full-time Hifz program, the same program in which he completed his memorization. At the same time, he is currently home-schooled in the 4th grade. When asked about Numair’s achievements, Ahmed said he was very humbled by the experience.
"The (ISB) Hifz program was ideal for Numair," said Ahmed. "His Quran teacher was wonderful."
In Hifz school, Numair would attend class from the morning to about four o’clock in the afternoon. Currently, he recites his revision assignments to the teacher and fellow classmates. The total amount revised daily is a staggering 10 Juz per day according to his teacher, which is over 200 pages in a standard Arabic Quran. Before he completed his memorization of the Quran, he memorized his new assignments in class, under the guidance of his teacher.
"My teacher helped me very much," said Numair. "He helped me memorize in class."
Numair works on his home-schooling when he gets home from Hifz school, this under the guidance of his mother. When asked how much he enjoyed his home-schooling, Numair replied, "Not that much."
"He handled his home-schooling extremely well," Ahmed said. "My wife put in 99.5% of the effort to work with his studies. He also has a wonderful teacher for his school work."
As long as both his Quran and his school assignments are completed, Numair then has his daily free time, which he likes to use to emphasize his nine-year-old traits. Basketball is his favorite pastime.
Numair’s teacher wanted one particular thing for Numair in the future, and that was to "teach the Quran to others."
Ahmed has high hopes for Numair in the future, hoping that he will eventually understand the meaning of the Quran, learn Arabic, and gain Islamic knowledge. At the same time, Ahmed hoped that Numair would achieve academic success and become a community leader. For now, however, Ahmed understands that kids will be kids.
"He’s still little, and he loves his sports and video games," Ahmed said.