Sunday, September 26, 2010

Four Feet, Two Sandals by Karen Lynn Williams

You may have read my review of The Colour of Home. Here is another really special picture book which needs to be on every senior primary reading list. Four Feet, Two Sandals tells the moving story of Lina’s life in a refugee camp in Pakistan. She has been living there for two years following the long and dangerous journey from Afghanistan and over time her bare feet have hardened but when an aid truck arrives with clothing Lina is so excited to see a sandal left behind. It fits her perfectly but where is its partner? Another girl has found it. Feroza is new to the camp and her feet are very damaged.

It is Lina who suggests the best compromise. The girls should share the sandals – taking one day each. Through this simple act of generosity a lovely friendship blossoms. Things go well, with the girls watching the boys in their makeshift school room, spending time together enjoying secrets and future plans until one day Lina gets the joyous news that she and her mother along with two young brothers are now allowed to enter America.

The scene where the two girls say goodbye will leave you in tears. Take a look at this video for more details of the illustrations and background to this important and moving story.

There are excellent teacher notes too. I use this book with Year 6 students as part of their topic "Identity and Values" along with the web site "The Long Journey".

No comments: