Book Review: The Boy at the Back of the Class
In The Boy at the Back of the Class, by Onjali Q. Rauf, five students learn they can make a difference and the value of friendship. Ahmet is a new student in school, he is a 9 year old Syrian refugee. This is the story of how he becomes friends with Alexa, Michael, Josie, and Tom. Ahmet continually shows his bravery as he learns to adapt to a new place and to trust his new friends. Alexa, Michael, Josie and Tom learn that they can speak out and stand up and that friendship is a joy no matter the differences. In this book, there were both children and adults that were unkind, something that we come across on a daily basis. However, the five main characters found ways to stand up to those that were unkind. They learned that by talking to helpful and kind adults around them, they could make plans and make a difference. This book would make a great read-aloud for 8 to 12 year olds and would provide for lots of discussion about how to be a friend and specifically how to support refugee friends. The book ends with several helpful pages of questions to consider and offers ideas of how individuals can help with the current refugee crisis. For other options to find ways to help visit: https://tsosrefugees.org/blog/2021/08/16/how-you-can-help-our-afghan-allies
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Stepping into Each Others' Stories
When describing the work I do here at TSOS, I often say, we try to help people “step into each other’s stories.” Lately, I’ve been doing more of that myself.