The Arabic Quilt: An Immigrant Story

The Arabic Quilt: An Immigrant Story
Age Range
Release Date
February 18, 2020
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Kanzi's family has moved from Egypt to America, and on her first day in a new school, what she wants more than anything is to fit in. Maybe that's why she forgets to take the kofta sandwich her mother has made for her lunch, but that backfires when Mama shows up at school with the sandwich. Mama wears a hijab and calls her daughter Habibti (dear one). When she leaves, the teasing starts.
That night, Kanzi wraps herself in the beautiful Arabic quilt her teita (grandma) in Cairo gave her and writes a poem in Arabic about the quilt. Next day her teacher sees the poem and gets the entire class excited about creating a "quilt" (a paper collage) of student names in Arabic. In the end, Kanzi's most treasured reminder of her old home provides a pathway for acceptance in her new one.
This authentic story with beautiful illustrations includes a glossary of Arabic words and a presentation of Arabic letters with their phonetic English equivalents.

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Hard Being Different
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Kanzi has trouble fitting in at school because of her Arabic heritage. The other children make fun of for her differences, but the quilt her grandmother made gives her strength. Another thing that helps her cope is poems and when she's down, she writes one about the quilt. The teacher discovers her notebook of poems and decides to create an activity that will teach everyone a bit about Arabic culture and help Kanzi fit in a little better. Soon, Kanzi finds things grow a bit easier for her.

THE ARABIC QUILT is a story about the struggles of immigration and shows how one person can have a huge impact on someone's life. Her teacher made Kanzi feel like she belonged and taught about her heritage in a fun way for children to absorb. This is a story we need in today's time and I'm happy to be able to share it with my daughter. THE ARABIC QUILT shows the importance of accepting people and how hard it can be for those who are immigrated from different countries.

Final Verdict: In today's society, I would recommend this book to just about any child. It's important that we learn about acceptance and that not everyone is the same at a young age.
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