Answered by Shaykh Faraz A. Khan
Question: I have been helping my mother to learn how to pray and she now feels comfortable to be led in prayer by myself (i.e. just her and myself together) but at this stage she is still learning and cannot pray alone without being led. I have recently begun to attend the mosque for fajr prayer but now I also must lead my mother in the fajr prayer at home upon my return.
(1) Is this valid, to pray fajr twice?
(2) Is there less reward to pray at home with my mother versus attending fajr at the mosque?
(3) Also, if I arrive at the mosque before fajr, can I intend both tahajjud and greeting the mosque?
Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,
I pray this finds you in the best of health and states.
(1) You should not pray fajr twice. Either pray at home with your mother, or in the mosque.
Your mother can start off doing just the minimum prayer, so that she can pray on her own, while slowly yet steadily learning more of the prayer and applying what she learns. For the minimum valid prayer, please see the following answer:
I would also recommend she take an actual course on the basics of Islam and the five pillars, such as:
(2) In general, praying in the mosque entails more reward. But one attains the reward of congregation by praying in any congregation, whether at home, work, school, etc.
(3) You can intend both tahajjud and greeting the mosque, as long as this is done before fajr adhan. Combining intentions is generally valid, details of which can be found in this answer:
[Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]
And Allah knows best.
Faraz A. Khan
Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani