Saturday | October 21, 2017

On April 28, 2017, Crestwood World History and Religion students took a day to take in the multireligious and multicultural character of Toronto.  Students visited a Sikh gurdwara, a Hindu temple, and in the afternoon we visited the Noor Cultural Centre and Mosque, to take part in Friday prayers.  It was a day for students to put their learning into practice and to connect to the larger community.

At Noor we were able to meet Tahir Mohammed, who had agreed to do an oral history interview with Crestwood students.
Tahir was born in Trinidad, descended from indentured workers who had come there from India in the 19th century.  Tahir explained what this meant in the context of the abolition of slavery, and students were able to learn about the multireligious nature of present day Trinidad.  Tahir was not particularly religious in his youth, and upon arrival in Canada religion still did not play a central role in his life; his greater interest was in establishing his place in his new country.  He also remembered a fondness for rock’n’roll.  9/11 changed some of Tahir’s perceptions, and it served to reinvigorate his interest in his roots, including attendance at his local mosque.
 Tahir gave students a good overview of his life before emigrating to Canada, and he covered the realities and misconceptions surrounding Islam; he also encouraged students to develop an interfaith dialogue, and we are hopeful that this interview will aid students in that journey.

May 29th, 2017

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On April 28, 2017, Crestwood World History and Religion students took a day to take in the multireligious and multicultural character of Toronto.  Students visited a Sikh gurdwara, a Hindu temple, and in the afternoon we visited the Noor Cultural Centre and Mosque, to take part in Friday prayers.  It was a day for students to put their learning into practice and to connect to the larger community.

At Noor we were able to meet Talat Muinuddin, who had agreed to do an oral history interview with Crestwood students.
Talat was born in India, and grew up in the Hyderabad area.  When partition came in 1947, her family witnessed the chaos, and they were eventually uprooted themselves, making their way to Pakistan.  From there Talat spent time in England before emigrating to Canada in the 1960s.  She told students about her personal experiences along the way, and about the realities and misconceptions surrounding Islam; she also encouraged students to develop an interfaith dialogue, and we are hopeful that this interview will aid students in that journey.

May 23rd, 2017

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Crestwood was proud to welcome Imam Habeeb Ali to our community today.  Imam Ali spoke to several classes, including American History and World Religions, and many interested students attended on their own too.  He addressed many important topics, including Islamophobia, the Quebec City mosque tragedy, and the immigration situation in the United States.  It was a great opportunity for Crestwood students to hear different perspectives and to have their questions answered, and a great demonstration of Canadian pluralism.  We are grateful to Imam Ali, and we thank him for one visiting our school and educating our students.

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February 16th, 2017

Posted In: Crestwood News, Upper School

Mr. Habeeb Ali has been a friend of Crestwood since 2013, when he welcomed Crestwood students to the Toronto Islamic Foundation as part of our Houses of Worship Field trip. In addition to his scholarship on Islam, and his experience as an educator, Mr. Ali works with the International Development and Relief Foundation.

In December 2013, Mr. Ali visited Mr. Hawkins’ World Religions class as part of the “Beliefs” unit. Having studied the beliefs of Islam in class, students were primed with questions regarding the application of Muslim beliefs to multicultural, democratic Canadian society. Mr. Ali’s answers to students’ questions provided great insight to a faith that is often misconstrued and misrepresented in the Western media.

February 18th, 2014

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Crestwood has been very fortunate to build a partnership with the Noor Cultural Centre in the last few years. Kassim Ebrahim and Samira Khanji have welcomed us and have taught Crestwood students some very important lessons about Islam and tolerance and diversity. We visit each year, and members of the Noor community generously have shared their personal stories and views and have agreed to be part of this project. One of the people we met this year was Charazad Fahmy, who was interviewed by members of Mr. Hawkins’ World Religions class in April 2012. Mrs. Fahmy shared with the students her impressions of the Arab Spring, and of her own life in Egypt, and she brought to life so many of the issues presently facing Canadian Muslims.

July 9th, 2012

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Omar Elliott came to us courtesy of the Noor Culture Centre, a mosque and Islamic Centre in the Crestwood neighbourhood. Omar is from Guyana and has travelled extensively, living in South America, Europe, Asia , and North America. He spoke to a group of Crestwood students about his experiences and life’s lessons along his personal journey.

July 9th, 2012

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On Friday, April 13, Mr. Hawkins’ World Religions 11 class and many members of Mr. Masters’ YARRD club visited the Noor Cultural Centre, an Islamic mosque and community centre on Noor Drive, just a few minutes from Crestwood. This is the third year that we have visited them, and we were once again embraced by the community. Students were welcomed by two members of the Noor congregation, Mr. Kassim Ebrahim and Mrs. Charazad Fahmy, who explained the Friday afternoon observations; students then were able to hear Friday prayers and to share refreshments with members of the community as a whole. Finally, Mrs. Fahmy and Dr. Mahdi Tourage shared their personal stories and observations with the students in two oral history interviews.

June 28th, 2012

Posted In: Crestwood News, Field Trips