The goal of New Horizon’s Religious Studies Program is to develop in each student a love for and understanding of God and Islam and to nurture an identity as a confident and faithful American Muslim. We hope to accomplish these goals through consistent instruction in three basic areas (Islamic Studies, Qur’an, and Arabic Language) and through the creation of an environment conducive to the promotion of Islamic values and beliefs. Students receive instruction in these areas from specialist teachers for an average of about two 50-minute periods per day.
The Bureau of Islamic and Arabic Education (BIAE) establishes and distributes the curriculum for New Horizon’s Religious Studies Program which is geared toward the formation of a balanced Muslim identity at three levels: Identity Formation, Knowledge, and Application (practical skills).
The mission of Islamic Studies at New Horizon, Irvine is to equip students with critical Islamic literacy sources in an understanding of Islam’s core values as derived from the Qur’an and the authenticated narrations of the Prophet Muhammad’s teachings and example. The purpose is to engage in a learning process that encourages exploration into the world of big ideas and tough questions within a progressive framework developed by American Muslims for generations. As students co-create their own personal relationship to Islam’s core values and practices, teachers begin to develop a framework for applying the core values and principles of Islam through civic engagement and public service. Islamic literacy at New Horizon is literacy of both the word as well as the world.
The mission of the Arabic Language Program is to empower the New Horizon students with adequate Arabic language skills to enable them to read and comprehend the Qur’an. Students will be able to understand Islam from its authentic sources and interact actively with Arabic as a living language. Using an original series of text materials in Arabic, the teacher follows a sequential program in which students develop reading, writing, and speaking ability. As students enter 4th through 6th grade, their Arabic instruction is differentiated to meet the needs of every learner at their language acquisition level. Students in 4th through 6th grade are required to take Arabic Language while students in 6th – 8th grade may opt to continue with Arabic or select another language in preparation for high school.
Quran instruction is designed to maximize memorization of the 30th juz’ by 6th grade with many students exceeding this goal. Through mastering An-Noranaya method, students are able to recite the Quran properly and beautifully. With the use of technology, instruction is differentiated for each student with individualized goals and opportunities to meet one-on-one with their instructor to move their instruction forward. All 4th – 8th grade students gather daily for Duhr Prayer where they have an opportunity to call the athan, iqama, and lead prayers throughout the school year. A guest Khateeb is invited to provide a khutba (lecture) every Friday for Juma’a Prayer. Older students also have an opportunity to practice preparing and delivering a khutba before graduation.
With access to local, national, and international thought leaders, New Horizon Irvine students will be exposed to best practice knowledge, people, and resources to further develop their learning. All of this will be done through our commitment to the use of technology, critical thinking, creativity and a spirit of open learning in an environment conducive to a diversity that reflects the beauty of our community.