The student news site of Glenbard South High School in Glen Ellyn, Illinois

The Independent

The student news site of Glenbard South High School in Glen Ellyn, Illinois

The Independent

The student news site of Glenbard South High School in Glen Ellyn, Illinois

The Independent

“The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store”: American Progress
“The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store”: American Progress
Abby Edwards, Scoop Writer • May 3, 2024

In “The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store” by James McBride, It is no secret that Chicken Hill is a place of struggle, and in 1930, Jews and African Americans had to depend...


The Ideal Ramadan Routine For Students: My Experience

This year, Ramadan began on March 11 
This year, Ramadan began on March 11 Source:


During the holy month of Ramadan, nearly two billion Muslims around the world embark on a 30-day-long (sometimes 29) fast from Fajr (the first prayer of the day, a little before sunrise) to Maghreb (twilight, a little bit before sundown). Not only is Ramadan a month of increased spirituality, community and relaxation, it is also a month of mental, physical and spiritual transformation. The main goal of Ramadan is to spark inspiration, and to establish a new routine that involves all aspects and essential pillars of a Muslim’s life. Not only does  it involve abstinence from food or drink, it honors one of the main five pillars of Islam. It is a time to abstain from negative thoughts about oneself and others, to abstain from gossiping, skipping prayer due to other activities, and instead prioritizing one’s faith and values. 

Many Muslims, including myself, want to make habitual and lifestyle changes during Ramadan that will last even after it has ended. After watching videos created by young, ambitious Muslim YouTubers such as Bahja Abdi, Shiggs, Mohammed and Moaaz, I have gained many perspectives. I feel that I have figured out what the most ideal Ramadan routine is, specifically for a student, such as myself. My goal is to help other students establish a good routine, one that could mesh well with their already busy schedules. Although not perfect, I hope this could provide an outline for anyone: Muslim and perhaps non-Muslims as well. 

The time at which one wakes up determines how the rest of the day will go – a common theme appearing not just in these videos I watched, but also throughout Islamic teachings. The first prayer of the day occurs between 5 and 6 a.m. (this Ramadan), encouraging Muslims to wake up earlier. Suhoor, the meal one eats before fajr in preparation to fast for the rest of the day, also helps determine when one should wake up. Personally, as someone who is taking Online P.E., I wake up around 3:30 a.m. to workout, eat suhoor and then pray. For some, this may sound too early, but it feels much easier once one starts doing it more often. 

During Ramadan, I am sure that many Muslims’ sleep schedules get messed up due to wanting to eat, pray and finish homework. From what I have gathered, the best time to do any homework is in the morning before going to school and after praying fajr. This way, one will be awake and not sleepy from hunger in the evening. 

Another major strategy I have implemented is trying to do the most homework I can during school hours so that I do not have as much homework later on. If there are any major tests or projects coming up, I prioritize those classes first in order to be prepared for them. I think it is best if you try to not turn work in late, as it will pile up and only cause more stress, potentially causing interference with your salah. 

After getting home, perhaps try to do any leftover homework. However, if one is getting home late due to a job or another club, like I do, try taking a little nap before iftaar. Afterwards, it would be best to go to sleep after Isha, although that usually isn’t the case for me or a lot of other teens. This is where there is some room for flexibility, where you could workout at night instead of the early morning. 

If taking a physical education class during school hours, it would be a good idea to ask your gym teacher for breaks during Ramadan, as vigorous cardio is not recommended whilst fasting. 

It is also important to maintain a healthy and balanced diet during Ramadan so as to avoid future health problems due to unhealthy foods. Especially in Desi culture, spicy, deep-fried foods often seem like a must for every iftaar party. However, having these types of foods after a prolonged period of fasting may cause digestive issues, heartburn, excessive fatigue and more. As someone who used to eat all of the fried foods my mom cooked during Ramadan, I can say with 100% certainty that this Ramadan has been much more productive for me, as the food I have been enjoying during iftaar has been fresh rather than fried. It is humorous, seeing the contrast in productivity between my mother and me after iftaar. While she eats fried foods and then wants to lie down right away, I want to be active after eating fresher foods, like vegetables, fruit, dates and legumes.

Aside from religious reasons, there are reasons why many non-Muslims fast during Ramadan with their Muslim friends, such as wanting to support them or experience the community and discipline. Besides that, both non-Muslims and Muslims experience similar side effects. Thankfully for me, when I get enough sleep, my focus is heightened and I am able to get through assignments with efficiency. I am able to do all of the things I love but with more passion. Overall, Ramadan is not only a month for reflection, mindfulness, community and discipline, but also a month of transformation in every aspect of life. 


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About the Contributor
Alishbaa Karim
Alishbaa Karim, Creative Corner Artist
Hi, my name is Alishbaa and I am the main editor of the Poetry section in Creative Corner this year! As we aim to try and expand the Creative Corner section, our goal is to express the diversity of creativity at Glenbard South and provide a place where artists can express themselves! Don’t hesitate to reach out! (My email: [email protected])

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