The word Tajweed linguistically means “proficiency” or doing something well. When applied to Quraan, it means giving every letter of the Quraan its rights and dues of characteristics when we recite Quraan and observing the rules that apply to those letters in different situations. Majority of scholars agree that applying the rules of Tajweed while reciting Quraan is an obligation (Fardh)
When teaching young children to recite Quraan, its not necessary to teach them the rules themselves (provided they are reciting the proper way even though they do not know the rules themselves), but it is always good to do so. As far as the children are able to recite the Quraan properly, we can leave teaching the rules, but as soon as you feel that the child is ready you must teach them the proper rules. In this way we ensure that later in life he/she would always be able to recite correctly and check/balance him/herself.
When I started teaching my 7 year old the rules of Tajweed, I felt that he did not look forward to learning Tajweed as much as other subjects. Also that it was a bit hard for him to remember the rules and apply them. To make his learning engaging and more interactive, I designed an interactive activity for him. The result was instant success. So I am sticking to this method of teaching Tajweed. For the benefit of those who have computer loving kids, I will be sharing these activities, Insha Allaah. May Allaah accept and make our children true assets of this Ummaah. AAmeen.
Please note that these activities are just an aid in the process of learning and can not take place of a teacher. Along with a teacher and these activities there are a few more tips on learning Tajweed for children:
1. Learn one rule at a time and until the child is not proficient in applying it in his/her daily Quraan recitations do not proceed to next.
2. Listen to Quraan recitation audios by Quraa who recite slowly and clearly. Its always a good idea to listen to the portion of Quraan from an expert Qaari before reading it yourself. Try to copy them, and pay special attention to how they pronounce each word. Draw the attention of the child towards the particular rule he/she is learning.
3. Apply the rules they learn to the suraas they have already memorized. Even if it takes a long time, first correct the memorized suraas before proceeding to memorize next one.
4. Practice and repetition is the key insha Allaah.